I used to take a lot of grief from my husband’s mother about the fact that they would come over and my house would be messy, there would be dishes in the sink, etc. I don’t take grief about it anymore because they don’t come over much and if they do have anything to say about it I just say that it’s none of their business and won’t listen to it. But I don’t understand why their house was never messy when the kids were growing up. My house is messy because I like to spend time doing things with my kids. For example, this summer we would eat supper outside a lot and then they would want me to push them on the swings or play on the trampoline with them. According to my mother-on-law’s thinking I should clean up the patio, go inside and do the dishes, clean the stove, etc. first. By the time I would finish with all of that there would be no time left to play with the kids. So how can I say no to my kids? When the kids want me to lay in their beds with them and read another book or three to them when I should be downstairs cleaning the house – how can I say no? I truthfully believe that when the kids are older they won’t remember if the dishes were done or if the floor was swept, but they will remember that their mom took the time to play with them, to read to them, or to just spend time with them. They will remember that they were important to me, and I believe that is the most important thing of all.