Some messes I can’t clean up


I am a Mom–Manager of messes. I am the one that runs toward the vomiting child at the top of the bouncy slide in a crowded Madison shopping mall or  towards the child that sneezed with a mouthful of spaghetti even when I am wearing white pants or even towards the child that exclaims loudly in a restaurant, “Mom, I just had a fart I never shoulda trusted” just as they are serving my delicious hot food…I do all of those things because that is my job–I clean up messes!

cleaning-vintage-slideshow mess

I even had a job in an Emergency Room for a time–and I cleaned up messes…a lot of messes…big sticky, stinky, bloody messes!  There was this one night when this guy came in….oops, never mind, I am not allowed to talk about it…my point is there were some bad  messes and I had a lot of help and we always got ‘er done!

So, last January we had this freakishly warm 60 degree day in the middle of snow, ice, blizzards and deep freezes. I sat down about 8 pm to watch Chopped after I got all the rugrats in bed and head a huge, house rattling crash…I looked out at because of the extreme melting and whatnot  the center of the retaining wall had crashed into the patio.

Some of you know that I live in the most amazing place on earth! We have been unable to sell the house in Iowa for over 3 years now and we had a not-so-fun time in the cabin (trailer). My wonderful Husband (sensing the end of my sanity after it became clear we would not be given another mortgage until the Newton house was off the books) told me one day, “I found a rental in Hollandale on Craig’s list…maybe we should go look…Yeahhhh a rental in Hollandale. I had looked at over 50 houses. One where a murder had been committed, one so infested with fleas that the realtor looked like he had on black knee socks after viewing, one with a mural of Greece in the basement and one with squirrels painted in corners throughout the house. I saw houses I loved and houses I hated and I wanted to live life again…like a human with water and electricity and no possums in the night…..I had a new baby and ached to stop living temporary and start living permanently.


Our landlord and his family are great people! He is an owner/contractor of his own construction business, a perfectionist and unbelievable steward of the land. Translation–he enjoys taking care of every inch of this place….and it shows! So, after the dishwasher broke 3 days before thanksgiving, the furnace broke in the middle of a deep freeze then…I had to call them about this…yikes I was scared!

I looked out the window often and I would not even have a clue where to begin. The crew descended upon us early one Thursday morning: 2 guys, a foreman, a skidloader, bobcat and a backhoe. I took the boys to school and did my errands and came home to find this:SAM_1901

We had heavy rain the days before. I watched this backhoe teeter and made my plan to call for a MedFlight helicopter and give first aid after it tumbled down the hill. This guy named Jeremiah used such courage and finesse moving and digging the earth with precision.


Did I mention these bricks are heavy?! They build them one by one. We have a heat wave. I want to tell the guys to put on sunscreen and stop smoking so much, but instead I bring them ice water and lemonade. They really appreciate it and tell me I remind them of their Mom…ummm thanks.


I started thinking about this time about effort. About how many times we “hire” a job and expect it done…perfectly. Just like my family…I spent the whole day scrubbing, folding, sweeping and picking up and they get home and…nuttin–they just expect it. 16 hours the first day…16 hours the second…they worked and worked.


This is today, at 6:15 am…I love to see the sunrise over the berm. The new steps beckons me up the hill to my garden and the 25 acres of woods. Now, it is my turn…I just plunked my herbs in to keep them alive, but the next few weeks I am going to fill it in with life and color and green!

So here we are at the beginning of summer–busy, busy summer and this mess is all cleaned up! Thank someone who cleans up your messes and have a happy summer!

Now, I have to get busy–I have messes I can clean up!

Sincerely, Sara

5 thoughts on “Some messes I can’t clean up

  1. Oh Sara, I miss the nights in the ER, with multiple messes to clean up. It was work, but we had fun. Love your blog!

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