11 things A

The sun was creeping through the mini-blinds, waking me up long before I wanted it to. Stop it, I thought. It’s only 5 a.m. and I need sleep!  But then my brain decided to start replaying the entire Hamilton soundtrack–every upbeat, hip-hop harmony. Ugh. I really did need the rest. Maybe I can change the mental channel to something softer. And then it started: the list of alllll the things I really should get done before graduation Sunday. This Sunday.

You know what? Most of them just ain’t gonna happen. Especially since most of them were CRAZY.

I am not going to get my bedroom cleaned to perfection.

I am not going to get that wall in the living room painted (a thought that actually occurred to me this weekend that I should try).

I am not going to get to the travel store to get the rest of the stuff my son needs for his trip to Europe in three weeks.

I am not going to get the basement storage shelves and my son’s movie studio organized.

I am not going to get the cookbook shelf de-cluttered and all the kids’ old school papers from this year gone through.

I am not going to get the laundry room cleaned.

I am not going to get the flowerbed weeded.

I am not going to purge and organize the garage.

I am not going to get the next three months of my blog planned out.

I am not going to get my son’s “stuff he’ll need for his dorm in August” pile gone over.

I am not going to reupholster the ottoman with the frayed edges in the living room. (See? Crazy!)

Not. Gonna. Happen.

My goals this week need to be realistic and minimal. I am fighting all the emotions of my firstborn son about to graduate high school. (Seriously, I cried this morning when my youngest asked me how many days until he graduates.) I do not need the pressure of getting my entire house looking like a Martha Stewart cover page. I’ve got a lot of family coming to visit from far away and I sincerely hope they are coming to visit us and not rate my housekeeping prowess. I hope they are wanting a warm welcome and not a perfect place.

My kids need me sane this week and not flying around the house on a broomstick screaming for them to scrub the baseboards.

My son needs a party that makes him feel celebrated, not a photo shoot perfect for Pinterest that includes all the great ideas I saw at other graduation parties this past weekend.

My relatives need some meals planned that allow us to enjoy each other’s company not a gourmet feast each day.

My guests need a picked-up place to sit and chat and enjoy one another, whether or not I’ve dusted behind the DVD player this week.

So this week, I’m choosing present over perfect. I’m choosing to prioritize people over process. I’m letting go of unrealistic and praying for relationship to win out.

If you are a parent trying to prep for graduation, go with God. Seriously. Breathe and remember to pray. I’ve been giving that advice all month–to myself and my readers. Let go of the insane things you think will make your home look perfect and focus instead on hugs and conversations that are rich and warm. Set aside the unfinished projects that just won’t fit and make room for the people that will.

What’s one thing you need to let go so you can be present in this busy time of year? I’d love to hear that I’m not the only crazy one out there. Let me know in the comments.





  1. Jeannie May 23, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    Yes, This!

  2. Heidi May 24, 2017 at 6:07 am

    I will need this reminder next year! Or this year if family decides to come for a visit. Thanks for real remi ders of what is important!!

    • Jenn Buell May 24, 2017 at 6:41 am

      Thank you, Heidi. Yes, if next year is your “launch” year, brace yourself and let go of perfect.