Learn to Love the Mess

2017-01-04_0001Why are so many people afraid of the mess?  I want to tell them this is where the magic is but I know what would cross their minds – this chick is cuckoooo.  How can you tell someone or let alone yourself, in the middle of chaos, that this is where the good stuff is?

What’s so good about a mess?

It’s where the learning begins and never ends.  It’s where we shrink and then miraculously expand and grow.  It’s where sparks are kindled.  It’s where we reach beyond our own comforts to a place we never thought possible.

When All We See Is Pretty, How Could We Not Have Unrealistic Expectations.

Have you ever met those people who absolutely hate to get dirty.  God forbid, they have to step in the mud or get a little dust on their pants.  Growing up on a farm, I quickly learned that there is very little tolerance for pristine order, especially when it comes to legitimate mud rooms.  No Pinterest unrealistic rooms that crowd our feeds of today existed back then, these mudrooms were the real deal – caked mud hanging to every sole, weathered gloves, blackened hats… dirt in every  nook and cranny that would send a germophobe to the nuthouse.  In my mind, a mud filled “mudroom” is a representation of a life lived well.


Try googling, “real mudrooms” and this is what you will get.  It makes me laugh.  There is not a single ounce of truth in any of these images.  I have to ask, why not?


Finding beauty in the mess

Mess is where I think there is real beauty.  The world is tiring of manufactured images that don’t tell the whole story.  They got away with it for so many years “sans internet” that we all believed the hype.  We now all know better and want truth.

As much as I love photography, as of late, I have been fascinated by the question – would people love pictures of the mess?  I have lots!  Would that be comforting?  Would they be afraid to see the mess?  Would it compel them?  Would they feel a sense of relief to share in the mess?  Would it be inspiring to know the truth?  Are we ready to really see the mess?


mess (20 of 10).jpg




mess-4-of-10In all reality, it is what I love most about hosting Share Classes on cooking.  It starts out looking all pretty and by the end, it’s a completely different story.  It shows the truth behind putting a recipe into action.  It represents the place that we lived and experienced.  It represents the good, the bad and the ugly.  It shows the unfolding of a story.  It’s not until after the mess that you can look back at it and say, we did that!

I look back on the thousands and thousands of photos (and I do mean thousands!) I took this past year that no one will ever see.  It’s an utter mess visually but it’s where I feel the most pride.  The pride comes from the journey in getting there.  Metaphorically and physically, traipsing through a desolate field, just to lie down in the muck, to get a fresh perspective.  Awe – that is where joy breathes!  It’s never about the pretty picture, it’s about the mess you stood in, waded in, bathed in, drowned in.


So what I’m trying to say is enjoy the mess friends.  Enjoy every speck of dirt, every splattered counter, every dirty floor, every battle, every mistake.  It is where life has happened.  Stop cursing it away.  Cherish it ‘cause it might not be there one day and you would miss all the magic in you that it brought forth.

Start anew in 2017 my friends and make this the messiest year yet.  Come to love the messes.  No more striving for a Pinterest style life, it’s a make believe, fabricated moment.  Don’t manufacture your life, live it, experience it, fall down in it, roll in it and then get back up laughing knowing that you are living (aka getting to be “a life”) in this precious world.  If you do that, I do believe this next year will be one of your happiest.

Much Love and Here’s To The Messiest Year Yet,





3 thoughts on “Learn to Love the Mess

  1. I’ve thought the same thing about the mudroom E. I’ve yearned for those picturesque rooms and wished so badly I could make that happen in my own home. You are right though, it’s not realistic. Look forward to seeing some messy pics. this year ;)! Beautiful post as usual. Your blog feeds my soul.

  2. love love loved this one!! well done!

    leith mchugh // connector. inviter. truthteller brave is the new b e a u t y brave beauty love wins in marriage mchugh story robcast interview


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