18 June 2009

The Last Full Day~


Today is the last full day of the school year here on the farm.  They do go tomorrow for two hours, but seriously, two hours?  What is the point?  So today is my day to wrap up any loose ends that I don't want to have to do when the boys are home.  

I don't know if I have mentioned this before, but I am definitely a type-A personality.  Now, that isn't necessarily a bad thing.  But when I started this blog, I started to see myself from different angles.  I started to get an outside perspective on what it might be like looking in. Today for example...

So summer break begins tomorrow, and we also have a guest coming on Saturday who has never been here.  A really special guest - someone I have never met but have a close connection to.  So, between those two things, I really want to have everything just so.  Now, I know that I have mentioned that we have this great property.  We have done a lot of work on it, but it still has a LOT of things that need to be done.  And honestly, if I am not physically working on something (totally overhauling the pond yesterday for example), I am thinking about doing something (today's to-do list goes on endlessly...).  My handsome husband and I feel that we are so incredibly blessed to have what we do, and some evenings, as the sun is setting after a gorgeous summer day, and we are sitting outside just looking around at it all, we remark that it is like we live at a resort, or in a park.  We love it that much.  And I do - really!  But I have this vision of what I want it to look like when guests come, or I have something planned.  And it doesn't involve a lot, to whip it into shape - a good mowing, debris removal, furniture set up just so, toys gathered and into the sandbox, gardens weeded and cleaned up.  Basic tidying, really.  But the type-A part is this - if all of that is done, it puts me in a REALLY GOOD MOOD. Not that I can't be in a good mood if it isn't done.  But I just feel so much better if it all looks "just so"...  And honestly, the older I get, the more I realize that when guests arrive, they probably don't notice that I have cut all the dead heads off of the rose bushes, or weeded the gardens, or swept the entry.  And maybe, as I get older, it won't bother me either.  

I envy those of you who can entertain effortlessly.  Who look forward to large groups of guests, who can just put out good food and know that the food and the company area all that matter. Those of you who are flexible, who just relax and enjoy the time spent entertaining.  Those who actually enjoy friends "dropping over" even if things are a disaster!  

So please, feel free to leave any sage advice on how to become less concerned about having everything "just right" and instead enjoying it all for the joy it brings.  It would be greatly appreciated.  I will be out in the gardens until I hear from you...

xo

33 comments:

Juju said...

I like to remind my self that true beauty is in the imperfections.

texasdaisey said...

What a beautiful table setting. I love the colors the flowers and the dishes. Well done. Beautiful blog also.
Debbie

Kasey said...

I'm telling you right now....you don't have to go out of your way for me....seriously.
I'm just coming in for a little visit....so...really...
xo

Kimberly said...

I so completely understand what you're saying! I often joke that I live in a fantasy world in my head where everything I would love to do to and around my house is done. I just see it that way until I have guest, and Hear myself telling them all I want to doand change. You know what, most everyone loves it as it is, and can't understand why I want to change a thing. When we are creative and type A, we are way to hard on ourselves! Have a wonderful time with your guest, and relax. I'm sure you are a wonderful hostess, and with such a wonderful property you don't need much else! :) KIM

Jackie said...

Umm...I can't give you any advice because I'm just like you that way...but I'll be reading the comments just in case there is someone out there that can help!!

mammydiaries said...

Would it help to know that you're not alone? That on the other side of the atlantic is someone who cannot relax at night if the dishes aren't done and the house is less then tidy? Someone who gets a big smile on her face when she thinks about starting the day with a clean house? Someone who looks forward to spring cleaning and for whom the phrase "You have a lovely home" is like music to my ears...

blondiensc said...

I used to be that way too, and I still am to a point, I can remember when I was 5 months pregnant and all the swelling started to come, I put on a Christmas dinner for 20 or so at the same time, and I was on my feet all day long preparing, cleaning, coooking and the whole time I felt this silly little tickle in my belly, and all I really wanted to be doing was sitting on my booty watching tv, reading a magazine and talking to my little punk as he grew in my belly...but the house was perfect, right...yup and I was exhausted. So over the years I have learned that having a tidy house is one thing, but breaking your back to make things just so takes away from the enjoyment of having loved ones over, and makes me want to do it less cause I stress on the little things, but those little things are always there and my guests don't see those things and my kid doesn't love me anymore cause I spent all day neglecting him to have a lovely home and my hubby, well he could care less what the house looked like...so just enjoy the moment, that is what it is all about, the moment!! Can you tell I have thought about this a lot? sorry for the novella~

Melaine Thompson said...

Kim, I think we all feel this way about our own homes, but let me tell you, and I am not lying! Your home is gorgeous and what makes it gorgeous is that it is not PERFECT so to speak. It has so much character and your gardens are fabulous and the chickens roaming around make me jealous I can't have them! Don't stress. You are always talking about overhauling your barn. To me, it's picturesque (did I spell that right?) Everything is beautiful, trust me darling! Love you! Melaine

Soné said...

love the beautiful table setting! I wish that the we could all live in a fantasy world! The brain is such an awesome thing!

Chez Zizi said...

While I totally get what you are saying, Type A and all I have no magic solution. You see I take on dozens of things and get them done. I don't know how but I do. Somehow I breeze through in the last hours - I am a HUGE PROCRASTINATOR. But anyway, I just want to be happy so I don;t make myself crazy. I guess I keep thinking that it will get done and if it doesn't, the world is not going to open up and suck me in or lighting won't strike.
I think you just have to tell yourself making those things just so doesn't change anything at the end of the day. Just be happy and you seem to be very happy my friend. Like you and hubby think, you are very blessed with your family and at the end of the day, if a friend stops by and sees toys on the floor does it change who you are? Nope. You are still a great person, a wonderful mom and a happy wife.
Much Love.

littlebyrd said...

I think you are going to do just fine. From just our brief meeting a few weeks ago you struck me as someone who can pull this off seemlessly ~ and trut me ~ no one will notice those little things. Just have fun ( I am type a too so I am luaghing at myself right now for writing this ;)

dolldust said...

ha ha... dead heading flowers before guests come! That's the kind of neurotic thing I would worry about too. Wouldn't it be nice if we could relax about those things when it's appropriate to. It's good to worry when we have time to work on the things we want to improve on, but sometimes it's wonderful to enjoy the look of things as they are.

I actually dislike the look of things that are over worked and managed.

Joyce said...

I think the more you entertain the easier it might get. I use to drive myself and my love crazy trying to do thing just so.

After some of life's curve balls my way of thinkig has changed, especially my last curve ball almost 2 yrs ago. I still love entertaining and making my guest feel special,but my outlook is different.

I have even been known to try all new recipes having 25+ peeps coming- I figure the worse that would happen, is we would either have pizza or chinese take-out, the main thing is my table is surrounded with family and friends that I love.

Breathe deep, enjoy the beauty that surrounds you and have fun! xoxo

Valerie said...

I wish I had some words of advice, but I don't! I've been known to clean for hours literally jumping into the shower 20 minutes before guests are due to arrive b/c I can be so neurotic over having things "just so".

By the way, I'm curious as to where you live that the children are still in school. My little ones have been out since before Memorial Day, BUT we do start school August 13th-ish. Do your children attend year-round school and are only on a small summer break or do they attend school where the year starts after Labor Day?

Best wishes for a enjoyable and RELAXING summer!

Lori said...

I wish I had some words of wisdom here for you ~ but I am the same way. Whenever I host something I am usually so tired from cleaning and food prep that I am in need of a nap before the guests show up at the door. I think because I feel that if anything is out of place or looks messy or heaven forbid dusty ~ it reflects badly on me. "She must be lazy" or "Not a good housekeeper". Why do we do that to ourselves ~ Really?? I hope I will chill out with age ~ but how old do I have to get :o)

BTW ~ I tagged you over at "my place". ((Hugs))

Laurie said...

I feel like I can relate on so many levels. I think you said it best. The older we get the less of a concern the little things are! Just keep going in that direction, enjoy your company. I'm sure it will all look great!!!

Have a great time,
Laurie

Alicia said...

Aaah another Type A loon to share my padded room with. Togther we can pace its small squishy space worrying about everything...
Yes I understand & know. Being a night owl too makes it only worse: up til 3 last weekend going through my summer stuff to resell & donate just to get it finished & so I can relax.
All I can say is embrace it, laugh at yourself & accept that everything will not always be just so. And a glass of chenin blanc helps too....
Enjoy your weekend. I have my anal list ready for the upcomer...

Alicia said...

ooh & are you possibly a Leo too????

la fille vanille said...

with your positive outlook on things I am sure that you will have a lovely time, even if you do not get everything just perfect-ready... :-) But I so know what you mean... Have a lovely weekend :-)

Jill said...

Sorry I can't help you because you just did a great description of exactly how I feel..

Jeanneoli said...

I am type A too! Our poor husbands. I have freaked out over the stupidest little things over the years. I have gotten a million times better and my husband is so glad. He tells me he used to dread people coming over because how obnoxious I would get about every little thing....kids have made me relax a ton! I still have a long ways to go to just say "come on over" even when things are messy...but I am getting better.

overthetopstudios said...

I know what you mean. Many days Tim and I look into our yard and and house and we never want to go anywhere but here, but the beauty comes with a price, lot's of hard work. A few years ago I found myself resenting my home and all the time it comsumes. My goals have changed as I have become older. I prayed about it alot, and instead of asking the the Lord to not make the weeds grow I prayed not to notice them. I have learned life is so short and if my perfectionism is taking time away some of my joy then it probably isn't worth it.
Amada

Les Cotrions said...

Thanks so much for your visit and for your very nice words! The table setting is simply gorgeous...it tastes of Summer ..and your blog is very insipiring!!!
Nice to meet you!
Wish you a faboulous week end!
Vale

ticklishfromadistance said...

Gorgeous post!!!! Hooray for Summer!

sherrieg said...

Thanks for the thoughtful post! I have a good dose of Type A in me. I'm a teacher, and there is NO satisfaction like having things "just so", especially at home. I completely agree with you on that one! My husband tempers my personality, though - he is always focused on people and interacting meaningfully with them. Reminding myself of that helps a bit, but I still want things to be perfect!

The Stylish House said...

Mimi,
This is my first visit to your site and I relate to this post. Over the years I have learned to pick what is the most important and put my effort into that and let the rest go. Cathy

Kristin said...

From one type-A person to another. Do you realize what you can get done in those 2 hours while they are at school still tomorrow, smile!

On the second items. I can spin myself into a tizzy in wanting things perfect when guests come. What Anthony has made me realize is that he will stop and just sit in people's company. That is what matters. So get some daisy's that last forever and sit and enjoy. From what I have heard your company in person is so very calming. People need that from you which is an amazing gift and wish to give you a smile back. I am just sayin. Hope it goes really well for you.

xo-kristin

Deborah Burton said...

Blogs are satisfying because we can take a relatively ho-hum photo and crop, change the lighting, embellish with wording, and present a slice of perfect heaven for our special e-friends. Life is not that perfect or simple, no matter how hard we try. I've vowed (and revowed) to give up on perfection, because life will always undo me back to disarray. Striking the balance is difficiult but begins, for me, with living in THIS MOMENT--it is all we have, really. The past is gone and the future is around the corner. Enjoy now, and watch the tension melt away. I turn 55 on July 1 . . . and this wisdom has not been easily earned for me. I try to focus on enjoyment of the journey, and things somehow fall into place. Letting go of the superficial can be highly satisfying. (And I must remind myself of this every day.) So much is expected of women in our society, but I think we are hardest on ourselves. Breathe deeply each day and be grateful for life's great blessings. You are so very talented!

Warm wishes,

Debi a.k.a. Ormolulu

vicki archer said...

I am just like you Mimi. I have taught myself to relax more as I have become older and stress less if everything isn't perfect - we can't do everything, as much as you and I would like to. (But it is fun trying...) xv

Jena Williams, Not So Shabby Interiors said...

Very well said...because I am type A too and totally can relate!! I thing we make things harder on ourselves but it is ok to be want everything the way we want it! I know that you will have everything looking just so and you can then sit back, take a deep breath and look around and see the beauty in what you and your family created! Enjoy your company!

Jena

FrenchBlue said...

Nothing quite like summers with the kids out of school~~ ENJOY SUMMER!!
xxo's

koralee said...

Oh dear... sorry i am no help...i stress out about everything...even when my daughters friends come over..everything has to be perfect...

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Mimi. Thank you for visiting my blog and your lovely comments. I'm also Type A and cannot really give any advice, other than as I get older I don't have as much energy to push myself to destruction. So I occasionally just give up and it feels good. Your blog is lovely! Julie