I can’t have nice things. I have two children and a dog. They have taken over my house and their tiny hands have destroyed it little by little. I clean. I organize. It doesn’t matter. I have two huge sets of sliding glass doors that lead to our back patio. It’s a virtual workout to clean the glass. In just 60 seconds or less after cleaning, there is 10 hand prints, two nose prints, lips and remnants of a dog sneeze on various areas of the glass. If only they were walls instead of glass. Except that there are constant mystery marks on my white walls at any given time. The Mr. Clean magic eraser and I are best friends since it is the only thing that can “erase” these marks that torture me. It is now spring and time for spring cleaning. But for me, it’s simply a time to try to keep up with the increase of mess that is brought in from the great outdoors. With all the grass that makes it onto my floor, it’s amazing there’s any lawn left outside. And didn’t I just vacuum that floor an hour ago?
My youngest child is a boy. True to the boy stereotype, he is a destroyer. If you build a tower, he will knock it over. If you draw a picture, he will crumple the paper. Yes, thanks to my three year old, we have shredded books, broken plastic toys, a broken kid chair and an almost six year old daughter who is constantly frustrated with him due to his destruction. We can’t have nice things….at least not around my boy. I ask him: “Did you break this?” He bats his blue eyes at me, waves his hand in the air and says “We don’t break our toys!” OK kid, practice what you preach.
That doesn’t mean that little girls are clean and gentle creatures. Oh no. They are just different in their destruction methods. For example, I give each kid a chocolate chip cookie. My son eats the cookie. My daughter eats around each chocolate chip since she is “saving them for last.” As a result she creates a massive chocolate mess on her hands, face, shirt, table, chair, floor and the wall she touches on the way to wash up. My son looks squeaky clean in comparison. Go figure. My daughter has also managed to create a collage of sorts on my kitchen table. You see, she’s an artist. With every work of art she creates, she leaves a trail of paint, marker, tape, glue and of course glitter, behind. My beloved magic eraser can only do so much. I’ve learned that “washable” is sometimes a lie. (Hey Crayola, you might want to do some quality control on the color BLUE!) So my kitchen table has “character” now. Some day I will get a new table, but for now, I can’t have nice things.
The list goes on. When we got our new car a few years ago, it was “christened” by my children’s dirty shoes. There may have been a crayon incident too. (Lesson learned – check for crayons before entering the car!) Shirts and pants have been tossed due to paint and dirt and chocolate stains that even my stain stick simply laughed at. This is why I buy the $8 children’s clothing at Kohl’s.
We have a ten year old English Bulldog (aka: messy dog). We recently got her a nice new dog bed. How did she thank us? By peeing and vomiting on it. Not on the nearby tile that would have been easier to clean. On the actual bed. Even the dog can’t have nice things. Well ok, who am I kidding….she slobbers and sheds on everything anyways.
As if all that isn’t enough, even my garage has taken revenge on our nice things. I walked in the other morning to see that a big piece of our artificial Christmas tree had fallen off a high shelf onto my daughter’s princess bike. It broke the pink carriage shaped basket off the bike and into four unrepairable pieces. Really, tree? What did the bike ever do to you? I now had to convince my daughter that a flower basket was just as nice as the previous basket.
So I’ve learned to just let it go. I do what I can. One day I will have nice things that stay nice. I don’t know when, but the day will surely come. For now, I have my magic eraser.