Sunday, May 17, 2020


This summer we will have lived in our house for sixteen years. It's been a great house, and I've recently come to realize that I love it more and more the longer we are here, and by "we" I mean my husband and me. We are officially empty nesters. Most of the time we are fine with our new titles, but it has taken us a looong time to get used to a such a quiet house. We miss our kids a bunch!

I will say, however, I don't miss the loads and loads and mounds and mounds of laundry that were always in the floor or stuffed in three or four baskets under the laundry room window. Sometimes now it's hard to round up enough to even get a load going.

Remember back in March when we were all told to go home and stay home? Did you immediately make a giant list of all the things you'd been putting off doing that you were now going to do? Me, too. I don't know about you, but my list is not a whole lot shorter. I'm not checking things off the list as fast as I had hoped to.

The one major clean out, clean up project I tackled the first week we were told to head home was my laundry room. I went through everything: the cabinets, the storage shelves--even the basket of mismatched socks. I still had my kids' nap mats from kindergarten collecting dust in there. I had every intention of throwing them away, but I couldn't do it (The kids are 26, 24, and 19, BTW.). I washed those faded, dusty things and stuck them right back up on a shelf. I just don't want to say goodbye to the camouflage, Barbie, and NFL nap mats just yet. I mean, I promise I tried. It just didn't happen.

Also in the room is a black wire shelving unit with six cubes. It's nothing fancy, but it was an inexpensive and quick way to get some extra storage. It was full of the strangest things--cleaning supplies, old planners I used to keep myself straight when my kids were all going in a million different directions, some middle school yearbooks, some of the kids' school work, old refrigerator magnets--the list goes on. It changed locations, and I added a lamp to the top of it. (I personally think a lamp or 20 improves every room. But that's just me!)

The room looked 100% better, maybe 200. It felt fresh and looked loved. But now, let's go back to the window I mentioned earlier.

When you walk in the laundry room, there is a window on the right wall. It looks into our garage, and you can also see into the driveway and the yard. To say it was filthy is an understatement. I scrubbed all things associated with that window, and I must have used half a bottle of Windex. And then I went into the garage and did the exact same thing to the outside of it. All of the organizing, and throwing away, and clearing out, and the rearranging of that wire shelf didn't make nearly the difference that cleaning that horrific window made. I was speechless. I couldn't believe how crisp everything in my view from the window now looked. The difference was so striking it made me wonder if I'd ever cleaned it since we moved in here. That sounds terrible, but I'm kind of serious. (Don't judge me...) I just wanted to stand in the laundry room and stare out of those grime-free window panes. The grass looked remarkably green, and I could make out every individual swaying tree.

I could see clearly through that window for the first time in a really long time.

And one day while standing in the laundry room, staring out that clean window--as I have come accustomed to doing these days--I realized that the "virus" had done the exact same thing for me.

It had stopped me in my always-busy, stressed tracks, and it allowed me the time to see things in my life much more clearly. It reminded me what really matters in this world, and more importantly, who really matters. That virus looked me square in the face and told me I needed to clean some things up, change some of my ways, and reevaluate how I spend my time. It ordered me to stop taking family, friends, relationships, my job, this house, my husband, my children, my health, and the love of Jesus for granted. And I'm trying my best each and every day to do just that.

That clean window will always serve as a reminder to me to stop along the way, throughout the days, months, and years to come, and see what might need to be cleaned up, so I never miss what I need to clearly see.

"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." 
Psalm 51:10

Our makeshift outdoor area during the coronavirus


  1. I love you Kathryn! You make me very proud to be your Momma!


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