31 Days :: Enjoy the Seasons

Every chapter of life tells a story in a home.  When it was babies, instead of a lunch basket in the refrigerator, we had a diapers and wipes basket under the coffee table.  Now, we have a container of sharpened pencils.

My youngest is nine years old.  He’s halfway though ’till you know what.  And my other two have already passed the half way mark.  I want them to learn to put their shoes away but, I also know that one day I will miss their messiness.

This home is here to serve us.  To teach us.  I don’t want to lose out on embracing each season of their childhood.  I hope I can recognize it and revel in it.

It is a sweet time.

Very sweet indeed.

“We’ve had bad luck with our kids – they’ve all grown up”  ~Christopher Morley

Be sure to visit the other 31 dayers::Life With My 3 Boybarians, Reluctant Entertainer, The Inspired Room, Remodeling This Life, Chatting at the Sky, Balancing Beauty and Bedlam, My First Kitchen,  over the next 31 days. Want to read all the Less Messy Nests posts? Click here.

This post was included at my sister’s 31 Days of Grace Linky party today. And I used too many words but that’s grace, right?


  1. Love the action shot. Love the message. Okay I guess I won’t holler for her to put her backpack away just yet;)

  2. LOVE the quote @ the end!! I had the same bad luck with mine. Better luck with yours.
    p.ss. – love your blog

  3. i love this post in every way!

    my basket HAS the diapers & wipes on the side of our chair in our family room. we have the plastic bright toys everywhere.

    so yes, it is sweet, smelly, wonderful, and MESSY. thanks for showing these pictures. your words were wonderful to read as well.

  4. I’m off of here to enjoy the season my children are in right now!

  5. Words are wonderful. Yours were perfect. Love you, sister.

  6. I love the boat in the family room! That is so my house. Perfectly worded and wonderfully illustrated with your very real photos. I love how you share your life with us Nester! It makes me feel not so alone in the craziness of this season I am having with my three boys. Life if full and that is GOOD!

  7. What a great post! Our home is the same. Just a few months ago we finally got to stop buying diapers after almost 13yrs in a row (with no breaks) of buying diapers!!!!! We still have the wipes in various places though:)

  8. Ah. My house is blissfully neat most of the time these days…one of the nice things about an “empty nest”….but when my kids return, with their backpacks, computers, shoes, laundry, assorted bowls and cups, etc. scattered around the house – that’s joy! You’re wise to savor each season! They pass so quickly…

  9. I loved this. I have lately been mourning the passing of a season in my life as my youngest has headed off to kindergarten this year. I wish for the days of wipes and diapers in my living room but God has been speaking softly to me lately, reminding me that they are still here and still need me just as much as they did then – I need to enjoy this season! Motherhood this season is different but no less important for sure. So after reading this I looked around my living room for clues to the season I’m in – perler beads on the floor and a basket of crayons and markers on the table, a tween’s chapter book on the couch and a kindergardner’s backpack on the floor. Thanks for the reminder of what’s important about our homes!

  10. I love that you have a blow up boat in your living room. Makes mine seem less messy with the line up of trucks and cars. Right now we have a parking lot in part of our living room. But as you say, they grow up too fast!

  11. Sweet Nester, my sentiments exactly! I know they have to grow up, and they should! But I would love for them to stay little just a little while longer!

  12. Love it!

    My husband has always said our house is ‘lived in’. From lego’s in the kitchen to barbies in my bathtub, one day it will be missed dearly. Through all of this we are creating memories.

    Thanks for the reminder!


  13. I used too many words too! xoxo

    love that your home is both beautiful and lived in. thanks for sharing the real life.

  14. Oh I love this post. What a wonderful reminder. Yes, one day I will miss the Legos spread all over the coffee table and the Barbies and cars and all sorts of stuff. And the fingerprints on the fridge and on and on. Enjoying this season I am in…
    Oh and love the song at the end too : )

  15. Sweet post, beautiful home… lucky family!

  16. Lovely!

    Thanks for sharing :-)

  17. My youngest (of three boys) is also 9! I have been struck with the awareness that we are getting closer to being empty nesters… Although I hope my nest is never THAT empty!!

    Enjoy the reveling… As well as the lived in house with shoes scattered about (as I typed these last words, I heard my 11 year old ask, “Has anyone seen my shoes?” :0)

  18. Thanks for the real-life photos. It’s helpful to see a beautiful home in action so I don’t think mine always has to be spotless to be nice. :)

  19. Nester, I have a confession to make. I have a 6 year old granddaughter who wants to constantly be beside me while she plays teacher. She always brings her books, table and chair set, high heels, and whatever she can carry and places it next to me in my bedroom. I usually tell her she can’t make a mess in my bedroom and she has to take everything away the same way she brought it in. It’s not till I read your post that I realized what a privilege it is to have this little 6 year old want to be in my presence all the time along with all her stuff. Out of all the family members she has she chooses me to be near and I should revel in that and not worry about the mess she makes! Thank you Nester for your piercing but eye opening words. From now on I will make sure I appreciate the value of having her in my presence and the time she spends with me.
    I know, I know. Toooo many words! :)

  20. We had the basket of diapers and wipes, as well. Miss that!!! Now we have the jar of sharpened pencils. I love watching my children grow into amazing people. Such a blessing, for sure!!! I totally agree that our home should serve us and not the other way around. Bless you!!!!!!

  21. Love this post! Thank You!

  22. Nester, I too love this post! I’ve been aware of the changing seasons too. I refuse to get rid of my minivan for an SUV because holding on to my van means holding on to my kids. They are no longer “little kids spilling drinks and food and crushing it into the floor and creating terrible stains” they are now young teens. I know they are a few years away from possibly flying the coup and I’m sad and scared. So, I try to revel in their teen messiness: messy bathroom, shoes and glasses all over the place, stinky bedrooms and all!

  23. Great post and soo soo true!!!

  24. Yes, yes. I miss my boys already and I still have as many years as you do + a couple more.

  25. Such a great post friend! I miss that black lab, dog hair and all but thrilled that he looks so at home with your family!

  26. Thank you for this post.

    Remembering to embrace the season we are in is key to my sanity.

    Thank you for reminding me of it.

  27. Where did you find that Christopher Morley quote? I absolutely love it!

  28. Love the pic with the raft on the floor! :) Thank you thank you for the reminder. I stress sooooo much over my kids and the stuff and being a good mom. I need to just enjoy things as they are.

  29. Thank you for this post! I love it!! I have a baby and I’m in an earlier season … but I so love it. It goes for every single stage of life … Enjoy it because it is so fleeting.

  30. I love seeing your boys and imagining their chaos in your oasis of pretty. It is the bee’s knees. Much like yourself.


  31. Beautiful pictures! I love the way you captured the sheer joy and chaos of raising boys!

  32. I, too, am trying to represent the seasons of our lives in my home as well. It has been hard for me to stop worrying about what things “look” like and more what is practical for my family. I think when a home is well suited to a family it WILL look good. Thanks for the reminder!

  33. Oh, I am so stealing that quote! Our children are 27 and 30, so yes, we messed up big time! :)

    Now I’m embracing the season of grandchildren! My old coffee table is stored and now I have one that will withstand crayons and such. The guest room is now the dorm, with a crib, a double, and two twin beds. And guess what? The two posts on my blog about those things are categorized under nesting! Thanks.

  34. Yes, try very hard to cherish each and every season, and take heart…When my 29 year old son comes to visit with his wife and our baby granddaughter, he still comes to me around 11:00 p.m. and says, “Mom, what’s for snacks around here?”; he kisses me goodnight and when I wake in the morning, I still trip over his shoes in the middle of the family room floor.

  35. What is it with kids? I’ve have bad luck with mine, too. I had adorable little red-headed boys and now I have these men around. . . sometimes. If I’m lucky.

    Oh, savor. Breathe deeply, and savor some more.

  36. Everything you’ve said in this post is so true…Sometimes when I think too much about them growing up I cry! Especially when listening to their laughter!

  37. Love this post…we keep jars of pencils on our living room game table, too. And in our part of West Texas…tis the season for an allergy medicine basket. Ours has medicine, droppers, q-tips, vaseline for red noses, and a thermometer. It’s on my kitchen counter August through March.

  38. oh gracious girl-zie, count the days … count the days. http://www.susiedavis.org/2010/10/number-her-days/ *tear*

  39. embrace each season of their childhood…..


  40. Love love love this post! Sometimes I get so caught up in picking up after them, that I forget to sit down and enjoy making a mess WITH them! Thanks for the reminder to enjoy this sweet time…for it will soon be gone!

  41. You are so wise. It isn’t always easy , but yes, the home should serve us, not the other way around.
    Gorgeous photos of real life.

  42. My oldest child just turned 16 and I am finding myself wanting to turn back time. When my children were very little I was tired all the time from running around after them, I never understood when people said to treasure this time but now I do and find myself slowing down to enjoy THIS time and not rushing it. Soon they will be gone and we will wish their messes and little voices were around.

  43. I just love love everything about this post. This message has been weighing very heavily on me lately & I always love to see real life photos :)
    The boat cracks me up!

  44. Jennifer Cooper says

    I love the raft in the middle of the family room and the quote, “We’ve had bad luck with our kids – they’ve all grown up” ~Christopher Morley

  45. Thank you for your post. I have a 20 month old and needless to say my house looks way messier than yours. I often want you to go back and explain how it was when your kids were smaller and less self sufficient:) I love your house and your blog and still strive to keep in pretty even when an entire toddler kitchen is spread out on my living room floor!

  46. I’m so needing this today!!! Love that song too. Haven’t heard it in a while, but it’s a great reminder. Keep pouring your heart out, it’s touching mine.

  47. I can smell the sharpened pencils from here! Hard to believe those pencil sharpeners are an “antique” item haha. I used to love going up to sharpen my pencil.

  48. One of these days you should do a post about your cute dog. I am sure he does his part in messing up the house. I have a black lab and the hair he sheds is hard to keep up with.

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