For starters my house is home. It is lived in, its used and abused. We work, play, eat and sleep in our home. How people ever expect it to be perfect I don’t know.

We’ve lived in our two bedroom mid-terrace house, right near the center of town, for just short of 18 months. Its a cobbled, old fashioned street that you can easily lose your footing on in the dead of night. I’ve heard the words ‘bastard’ and ‘f**k’ on this street on a Thursday night, ready for Fridays bin collection, more times than i can count. The shouts are usually followed by some thuds or more swear words as the poor injured person tries to find there way home.

We have a decent sized living room and kitchen down stairs. The living room is taken over by many, many toys and a huge-ass fish tank and the kitchen is occupied by a toddler table (meaning I cant fit in a proper table, logic?) and a massive cage. Both the rooms are tidy, but not my mums version of tidy.

My mums tidy is everything has a place and it should be there. My idea of tidy isn’t the same and i’m just grateful to come down in the morning and not sprain my ankle on Thomas the tank engine or get another piece of Peppa Pig play-set fencing stuck in the bottom of my foot. (Last time that happened I joined in with the Thursday night bin chorus but added my own swear words into the mix.)

Don’t get me wrong there are days i wish that i could walk through my living room door and not battle my way in past the two prams, not have to pick up the hoover for the 14th time that day and not have to scrape the mud out of the rug, but these things mean my home is lived in. My home is used. My home is loved.

My bedroom is a mix of clean and dirty washing piles that one day i’ll finally get round to sorting. I trip over the shoes that are left in the way and often walk into the wardrobe door that hasn’t been properly closed, but I also lay in my bed at night in that room next to the two people i love the most in this world.

If I come down downstairs and there are still pots in the sink from the night before its not because i’m lazy, its because I took my son to bed and he struggled to sleep so i stayed with him. If i come down and there’s another new stain on the living room carpet, its probably caused by paint or juice or mud. Least it was caused by my little boy having fun.

My worst nightmare is that one day I know that i’ll come down in the morning and my house will be clean and everything will be in its place. My carpet wont be stained and there wont be toys taking over my house. I wont accidentally stumble over a train track and I won’t have to clean the pots from the night before because my baby wont be there. He’ll be grown up and have left home. He’ll doing his own thing and probably creating his own mess somewhere else.

One things for sure, I might curse this mess and disorganisation now, but in 20 years time when Jacks flown the nest i’ll miss it. I’ll miss my beautifully untidy home. I’ll miss the laughter, and even the tears that are brought with it.

We don’t live in houses. We live in a homes.

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