I’m not a control freak.

This post was written last week. It was a really bad day. I refuse to go through and edit it. It was interrupted (as usual) so the ending may seem … off. There will be more written later. My frustration is growing. A page was accidentally torn from my binder yesterday and I had to leave the room. Hubby fixed it with hole reinforcing stickers; but I was livid. It’s like I’m emotionally sunburned and they all just keep rubbing my skin.


I am a cubbie-hole kind of girl. I like cubbies and boxes and bins. I like having  a place for everything. I like to keep it separated. I don’t want to mix work with home. I don’t want to mix friends with family. I want kitchen stuff in the kitchen, bedroom stuff in the bedroom, and bathroom stuff in the bathroom. I want a school room, a craft room, and an office. I don’t want to find toys outside of the bed rooms. I don’t want a stack of bills on the kitchen table. I hate having to look in the hall closet for extra toilet paper. I like things compartmentalized.

I like my time blocked off as well. Coffee Time- check. Chore Time- check. School Time- check. Cooking Time- check…..check…check…check…. Block it off. Don’t let them get mixed up. I don’t want to hear playing under my feet while I load the dishwasher, cook dinner, and plan out my next blog post in my head. Just typing that sentence made me anxious.

Being a big family, even a smallish big family like ours, means none of the above will ever happen for me. There will always be something put somewhere else. There will always be something going on under my feet. I am learning to adjust to that truth. Most days, I cling to the knowledge that this is a season that will pass. Some days, I am jealous of the moms who leave home and go to work somewhere away from the kitchen table. I have moments where I am envious of the mom down the street who has time to hone her baking skills in an empty house while her kids are away at school.

I love homeschooling our children. Even if I didn’t feel called by God to educate them at home I would still choose to homeschool them. My passion for it goes beyond just issues of faith. It is my job, as their parent, to provide them with the best education I can. Right now, I am doing that. Right now, I can educate them at home. Right now, this education is better than the education our school system can provide. Next year, the tables could turn, and I could be in a position to have to work. Then the best I could do would be to put them in school. But right now, this is the best I can do. I do it willingly and joyfully despite the mental challenges it causes me.

Having them here all day long, almost every day, is mentally exhausting. There is stuff everywhere. There is never a time where there isn’t someone taking something out, making noise, asking questions, spilling something, or crying. My mind wants to shut them out.

“Don’t talk to me now it’s cooking time.”

“That is not the school area, you can do that but it must stay in the designated school area.”

“Why are you coloring in the hallway while I clean the bathroom? This is chore time, go do something somewhere else.”

I don’t say these things out loud. I do say them in my head. Right this very minute I am almost in tears because the disorder around me (and really it isn’t  that bad) is so distracting I can barely focus on what needs to be done next.  I just offered to pay our oldest daughter a dollar if she would play with her siblings outside (in water, I know it’s hot) for one hour. ONE HOUR. That’s it. She’s been to the back door at least 4 times in the last 30 minutes, asking me how much longer.

My brain isn’t functioning well trying to jump from math to the dishwasher to wiping a butt to have you read your book to is the washing machine done yet. I keep thinking that if everyone just took five minutes to put things up where I want them then the family would flow better. That won’t fix it thought. They are flowing just fine. Everyone else is functioning just fine.

I’m the one flipping out on the inside.

I’m the one that feels overwhelmed when there is nothing going on.

They are good kids. They play. They want to be near me.

I want them to be near me.

On the outside, they see me let them play under my feet. On the outside, they see me let Lil Man climb on my back while I lay on the floor doing puzzles with them.

On the inside, I’m crying. I just want them to go play quietly, in another room, so I can move on the next thing. I want the world to stop needing me so I can do my “jobs”. Sometimes I think that if they went to school it would be different. Homeschooling just seems to add another block of time and another cubbie of things that get all mixed up with the normal mom things.



  • alfecia Reply

    Oh sweet friend, I wish I could come through the computer and hug you.  You are doing a very hard job.  Being home with your children 24/7 isn’t always easy.  It requires an amazing level of self denial and self sacrifice.  But from what I know of you, you are doing an amazing job.   Just remember this time is short.  It won’t always be this way.  Your children will get older.  And they won’t need you as much.  I pray that you are able to make the most of this moment.  May God’s grace and peace be with you as you deal with the chaos.  And may His love remind you of your worth in the midst of it.

    • MommaTaderDoodles Reply

      *hugs* It’s odd… it’s not so much that it bothers me, it’s that others look down upon me because of it, like I should be able to do it all, only they aren’t doing it all either.

  • Sherrinhill Reply

    Lisa, I don’t ever tell you enough, but I think that what you’re doing is AMAZING. It can’t possibly be easy. I’m not a mom but I’ve been around kids enough to know that you’re doing something that requires so much energy & patience & emotional stamina. I really admire you for teaching your kids – all the school stuff, yes. But most importantly about God, about how His love, and about how to love each other. I want you to know that I sincerely pray for you every day. I’m far away, but THAT I can do. I love you & your kind heart and hilarious sense of humor and immense talent. You’re a gift. (((hug)))

    • MommaTaderDoodles Reply

      Sherrin, your friendship is such a blessing to me! Thank you so much for your prayers!!  P.S. I REALLY must get to Florida

  • Jimmie Lanley Reply

    I love this post because it articulates so clearly the mental battle a mom faces. The desire for order and quiet is in constant conflict with that reality of the home. I can so relate to this, Lisa. 

    • MommaTaderDoodles Reply

      Thanks Jimmie. The response from this post has been humbling. 

  • Mary Reply

    Wow — are you living inside my head or what?    I REALLY go nuts some days because of the chaos that ensues with having my children home all of the time.  Like you, however, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    I think WE are the only people that the chaos, clutter, and disorganization bothers, too.  Our kids and spouses probably could care less (I know mine don’t mind it).

    Thank you for an HONEST post.

    • MommaTaderDoodles Reply

      YES! Mine don’t care, until that moment that they do, and then they go nuts. Usually, it’s 2 minutes before Awana’s when they can’t find their t shirt.

  • Christine- Fruit in Season Reply

    If I were in that mess of a house with you, I’d give you a big ol’ hug and a smooch!  Love this post, SO much.  It makes me feel like I can breathe with the companionship of it.  And tomorrow will be good, chaos and all.

  • Marissa Reply

    love this! As a mom who greatly feeds off alone time,its so very hard to feel over whelmed by the non-stop noise in my home. One thing i think drives me crazy is all the jobs that have no end.(dishes, messes,clothes) There is never that satisfaction of a job well done.Even with the kids you wont see the fruit of your labor for years. For me this is sooo hard. You are not a lone! thanks for your post.

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