Tuesday, October 2, 2012

An Attitude Adjustment

I woke up yesterday with a list of must-do's swirling around my sleepy head before my toes even hit the floor.  I got up in a Monday morning haze and toasted bagels for the kids before sitting down to read my Bible. Still in my P.J.'s, I yanked the dog off of my comfy rocking chair, and  attempted to avert my eyes from the tornado-like mess left behind after a weekend of fun and family visitors.

After reading the same Bible verse three times, I realized that comprehension was nearly impossible with a mountain of laundry distracting me across the room. Despite the foreboding task taunting me,  I managed to muddle through my morning quiet time and started sorting clothes into piles. Just as I sat down to teach the first of many schooling lessons to my kids, the phone rang.

It was the dreaded Realtor.

He wanted to show my house in two hours.  Thankfully he couldn't see the expression on my face through the phone. As I surveyed the disaster around me, I just laughed and said I'd have it ready to show.

 I laughed because I was still in my pajamas.
 I laughed because I had no less than 9 piles of laundry sorted on the floor in front of me.
 I laughed because God has a very funny sense of humor sometimes.
 I laughed because if I didn't laugh, I'd have started to cry at that very moment.

As soon as I hung up the phone, I lit all engines and throttled to turbo-speed. I have never scrubbed toilets, made beds, and mopped floors that fast in my life! I had to do some creative thinking that involved putting dirty, sorted laundry back into hampers, and shoving three loads of clean but not folded laundry back into the dryer for a later time.  I threw on some jeans and put my hair in a ponytail.  Just as I was putting the vacuum away, a car pulled into my driveway... a full 30 minutes early.  The kids scrambled to put their homeschooling books away, and I shuffled them into the truck as the realtor apologized for being so early.

We drove off in a rush and proceeded to find a spot to pull over and wait until the showing was over.  As I sat there with kids whining in the backseat, I felt my ears get hot.  My irritation level was rising with every moment that passed. Thirty five minutes later, I drove home with a brewing case of grouchiness.

I got the children back on track with their schooling, I re-booted my laundry, and sat down to write a blog during our lunch break.  No sooner did I start clicking the computer keys then the phone rang.  My stomach dropped. It was the Realtor. Again.

Another agent wanted to show the house at three o'clock.

The air hissed out of my lungs.

I tried to hide my disappointment and told him that we would keep it clean and be out of the house at three. I knew that I should have a positive attitude, but keeping an immaculate house twenty four hours a day, and being ready to leave at a moment's notice is mentally draining... especially when you homeschool three kids. Thirty eight showings in just four months is enough to make a grown woman cry. Yes, 38.  Four years after we moved here, someone bought the piece of land next to ours, built a GIGANTIC two story house on it overlooking our backyard, and it completely blocked our view of the lake. Now that we are trying to sell it, every. single. person. loves our house but hates the "huge two-story" blocking the views. It's tragic, really.

As I left the house for the second time that day, I mulled over all of the things on my list that didn't get done. I  stewed and brewed about all of the circumstances that were completely out of my control. I contemplated all of the things that weren't going my way. I had so many pent up emotions that I just wanted to go to the nearest canyon and holler until I lost my voice. I wanted to sprint until I fell over in exhaustion. I wanted to cry but I couldn't.

Instead, I clung to one last glimmer of hope.  Every October 1st, I go to Dairy Queen and eat a beloved Pumpkin Pie Blizzard on the first day that they're offered.  It's a tradition that I look forward to all year.  That night, my family loaded up in the truck and made the twenty minute drive down to the Dairy Queen. I pulled up to find out that Dairy Queen was closed for re-modeling.

 I just started cracking up! It was a perfectly crummy way to end a crummy day.  I laughed nearly all the way back home, and decided that I should just throw the covers over my head, and wait for a do-over the next morning because my attitude was less than joyful, less than thankful, and less than honoring to God. Yes, I'm ashamed to say that even mothers have tantrums every now and then.

Today was a new day. I woke up with a fresh outlook on the world, and a thankful heart. I repented of my previous attitude problem, and was careful to count my blessings at every turn. Things weren't perfect, but I didn't let circumstances dictate my level of joy.  Instead, I did my best to release my burdens to the Lord, and not worry about them. Our family went for a nice long walk around the lake this evening to get some fresh, fall air. Then we went to visit an elderly neighbor and bring her some fall decorations to cheer her up.  It was a much better day!

It's amazing what a little attitude adjustment will do for the soul...

God's still working on me,



  1. We tried to sell our house a couple of years ago and I was trying to keep the house clean every day while homeschooling our 3 kids. Only one couple looked at it in an entire year! We finally gave up because I was so tired of trying so hard to no avail and it was really hard not having up personal effects (pictures, etc.) for that long. And I've noticed since I've been married that you never have company when your house is clean, it's always when it's at its worst.

  2. :( God is still working on all of us. I have had those days recently too. You are an amazing wife, mom and person :) I will be praying for the right buyer to come along and snatch your house up. There is someone out there just for your house :)
    I am sorry that DQ was closed :( The walk around the lake sounds so great!
    What's your mailing address I want to send you something! :)
    Have a great day today friend! XO

  3. Sometimes we all need times like this! Thankfully we have a God that is always working on us. :)
    That would be frustrating waiting on the house to sell, and especially when the realtor calls and says he'll be over in a bit. I always tell folks who show up to my messy house that they are welcome to come in if they don't mind a mess or two. ;) My boys are very good at making messes, and they are getting good at cleaning them up, thankfully. Of course, when one is trying to sell a house, well, it really needs to be spic and span.

    Hope this day has been good! :)

  4. Oh.My.Goodness.
    What a day...honestly...it's good to know I'm not the only one who has a hissyfit every now and then...Praise the Lord for grace and forgiveness and a clean start!
    Praying for your home to sell~I remember when we had ours for sale...it was the opposite. I worked myself silly keeping it clean, re-arranging, etc to have NO ONE want to look!
    I had the same attitude...;)
    Cast your cares upon the Lord...and I hope your DQ opens soon!

  5. Isnt't is amazing how our attitudes affect everything? And how that rolls onto our kids! We used to have our home as a showroom for our business, which is kitchen cabinetry, and with homeschooling 4 kids, it was enough to almost send me to the loony bin! Thank goodness we now have a showroom in town!

    Good luck on selling your home soon!

  6. ((hugs!)) He's working on us all... I have the need for attitude adjustments all to often!

  7. Can't imagine having to keep it "show ready"! Quite the challenge! Where are you moving? (I'm very behind on my blog reading!)

    1. Oh, we're not really going far. We'll still be on the same mountain. We just need more land so we're moving to a bigger spread when we sell our little house.