Do You Care What your DIL Thinks of Your Housecleaning?

5 years ago
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And then there is the other side of getting ready for your adult kids to come for an extended visit.....

I realize that beginning a blog post with the word "and" as if you were in the middle of an ongoing conversation is very odd. But apparently my post yesterday was actually Part One of a Two Part Series on having your grown-up children come for a stay. Who knew?

So today as I continue to cross things off my "To Do" list for the kid's arrival tomorrow morning, some other thoughts are dancing around in my head. It could be chalked up to the phrase "what goes around, comes around" or it may be called "Karma"...but I am finding myself remembering some things I did on my own visits back to my parent's home over the years. It wasn't that long ago that I did these things and now I am on the opposite side of the experience. And it does not feel so great at all.

What "things" did I do?

Well, I thought it was hilarious to giggle about the expired food we found in mom's refrigerator, and the confusing way she organized her cupboards and closets. Whispering to my siblings about how much stuff was stuffed into the garage. 

These not-so-long-ago memories are coming back to haunt me as I try to hide my rusty cookie sheets with foil and I throw out old food in the back of the fridge. No, I do not have very many spices in my cupboard and I only have one knife that works on tomatoes and I use a hammer for a nut cracker. My dishes need to be wiped down with a clean cloth as I take them out of the 20+ year old dishwasher because the dish detergent leaves its grit on them. My bath towels are folded in a different way than my adorable D-I-L has taught my son to fold theirs. How many things do I do differently than they will?

I am dusting the dining room chairs that have gathered tons of dust from being ignored for months at a time. Then I notice that the window right behind the chairs has a grand gathering of spider webs in the corner! Gross! 

What else have my eyes grown accustomed to, that my grown children will see right away? 
Am I willing to be the subject of family jokes as well as my Mom was? We laughed at her habit of getting physically hurt on most holidays, just because for 2 or 3 years in a row she either burned or cut her hands. She took it well. I suppose. Maybe she did not like it, I don't know. It was never mean at all. At least from our point of view. Now I find myself on the other side of that view.

Yes, I am willing, because I also remember the big love we felt for Mom even while we were giving her a hard time. 

My family will shake their heads and chuckle at this post, because my two sons and my daughter-in-law love me a lot, and they will wonder why I am being so silly about these things. But I know how weird it is to walk into the home you grew up in and begin to see it with a different set of "grown-up glasses." 

This hasn't altered my joy and excitement at their arrival, not one bit. I will relax and love the visit with them, I just know it. I am working on a food shopping list and will try to have some good, easy ideas for meals. I've cleaned the guest room and put fresh sheets on the futon. I've been locking Layla in her crate for short periods of time while I am home so she is used to it if she starts to be bothersome to us. (Little lovable Layla? Never!) 

I had to stop and share these thoughts with you in the middle of my day of adult-kid-visit-preparation, but now I really need to get all the dog hair off the couch cushions. 


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