Friday, April 27, 2012

Reasons I'm considering having only one child

This week, I stumbled upon (and fell in love with) this picture on facebook.

The story that goes with it is this:
A man came home from work and found his 3 children outside, still in their pajamas, playing in the mud, with empty food boxes and wrappers strewn around garden, The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house and no sign of the dog.
Walking in the door, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, the throw rug was against one wall, In the front room the TV was on loudly with the cartoon channel, the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing. In the kitchen, dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled on the counter, the fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door.
He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she might be ill, or that something serious had happened. He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door. As he peered inside he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and walls.
As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel... She looked up at him, smiled and asked how his day went. He looked at her bewildered and asked, 'What happened here today?' She again smiled and answered, 'You know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what in the world do I do all day? ''Yes," was his incredulous reply. She answered, 'Well, today I didn't do it.

So the next day, I tested it out. How messy would my house get if I did abso-blooming-lutely NOTHING one day. I did no cleaning, cooking, organizing. The only thing I did was play with my kid and feed him when necessary. I know, I know, that’s probably breaking the rules of doing nothing if I’m truly testing it out. But he’s only 1 after all. To neglect those things would be abuse and my husband’s the guy that sends people to jail for that…. Sooooo needless to say I saw that as a necessity. But, after feeding I did leave all dropped food on the floor to be severely smashed and smeared.
And do you know what? My house didn't look like the picture at all! False advertising! One child on their own makes hardly any mess and gets up to virtually no mischief (unless you call repeatedly chasing and catching the chicken and cuddling it's like your baby mischief).
Sure, there were a few toys around. Tripping hazard? There were a few close calls with the chicken. Who needs eggs anyway? There was a bit of food under the high chair. Cockroach bait? No dinner on the table. Diet strategy?
That day, I decided that one child is the perfect amount.


  1. For this test to be accurate, N needs to be about 2 or 3. Travis can tear our house apart in an afternoon. He's late bloomer with the climbing but he just started so now he can get on tHe counters and get things off the top of the fridge. Scary! My house doesn't have the knocked over lamps, broken dishes and sand all over the place but toys, food, clothes, a soaking wet bathroom, etc, is what my house looks like when I get engulfed in a book. ; )

    This was a great post!!!

  2. People always ask me how many children I want and I always say 1. It's a little too late for that, so I love my 2. But seriously, one was so much more manageable :)

  3. I love that picture - makes me feel like my house is not nearly so bad! I have 4 kiddos, and my house does resemble that mess at times (although - really I don't think it could ever get that bad unless you left it for days). The great thing is though - I can tell (read command) the older kids to do a lot of the cleaning ;) And, as they get older I anticipate being able to do that even more! Then again - if I had 4 kids under the age of 5 - I think I might look just like that mom.

  4. It is when you and your husband become outnumbered at three that things truly become difficult.

  5. Loved this when I saw it on Facebook and love it on here. It is a bit much but I do think that my 4 kids could manage to make just as big of mess if I did absolutely nothing too. I have seen what happens when I get involved in a book or something and that is bad I can't imagine what it would be like if I just did nothing all day. Its not just about doing nothing bu also delegating nothing. I have maybe one kid that would clean up without being asked but the rest would just live in it.