It Doesn’t Have to Be Perfect

It Doesn't Have to Be Perfect

April 2014

I know a house doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

In fact, I think we embrace imperfection pretty well around our house.

Actually, sometimes my life at home is just plain ol’ ridiculous.

But as my daughter pointed out the other day when we decided to bring the new puppy  home, we apparently thrive on a little chaos.

And I’m ok with that. Mostly.

You’ve probably noticed that about me.

It Doesn't Have to Be Perfect

October 2007

That kind of crazy at my house hasn’t changed much since the early days of blogging.

(except now ALL THE ANIMALS have come to life.)

In certain seasons and in times of life change, chaos moves in.

Sometimes imperfection is invited and sometimes it barges in unexpectedly.

It Doesn't Have to Be Perfect

I think embracing and even welcoming imperfection in our home is a part of living a full and meaningful life.

But when you love a pretty and orderly home, it’s easy to forget that absolute perfection at home isn’t an attainable or desirable goal for most of us.

Sometimes we need a little reassurance or inspiration to remind ourselves what matters most.

That’s what I love about blogging and this community.

We are kindred spirits.

It Doesn't Have to Be Perfect

Today my long time blogging friend and fellow imperfect blogger Nester’s (aka Myquillyn’s) lovely new book will be released! I’m so excited for her — blogging is quite the journey and to see my friends’ blogs come to life in published books just makes me smile really big and proud! If you haven’t checked out The Nesting Place yet, YOU NEED TO.  It’s not your usual decorating book. Nester shares lots of stories and her personal experiences in learning to embrace imperfection in her home. You’ll love reading more of her story and seeing her home in the pages of her book! If you have ever doubted your own home could be beautiful to you, read the book! I’m sure you’ll be inspired to stop making excuses and get to work!

You can find The Nesting Place in my Amazon shop!


Leave a comment below about the imperfections you are trying to embrace at home to enter to win a copy of the book.

Five winners (open to U.S.A. addresses only) will be drawn from the comments at random!


  1. Imperfections?

    Dust bunnies, random piles, furniture that yearns to see a dust cloth.

    And that’s all ok. We’re happy here. And grateful we have a place to lay our heads …

  2. I adore the Nester’s mantra and I often say it over and over in my head when I look at my insanely messy house 95% of the time :) I would love to win a copy of the book!

  3. Having a writer for a husband means the dining room table is often covered in paper and two computers. And living with creative people often means MESS! The Nester is such a breath of fresh hour. I would love a copy of her book! Thanks, Melissa!

  4. I am trying to embrace the creativity of my children–pictures taped on their walls that they drew, one of their paintings flung in among other original art in the dining room and most especially their playset outside which is at various stages of “house” “fort” “mud pie factory” and “embattled ship.”

  5. I try to help my kids be (reasonably) organized, but I accept some degree of disorder because I want them to be creative and have fun–isn’t that what they’re supposed to be doing, how they grow and learn? I remember stepping over toy trains & tracks everywhere…Now I am sad because my son has outgrown them and I miss that phase of his life. Even though our house is a lot neater now. :-) I’m glad we let his imagination roam at the time, though. I would love to win a copy of the book–thanks for offering it.

  6. I can deal with the day to day imperfections. Mail on the counter, unfolded blankets on the couch, throw pillows on the floor, etc.. These things show that our home is comfortable, lived in and (I like to think) inviting. But I do have one thing that grinds my gears. The imperfection in my home that I am just starting to embrace is the state of my baseboards. No matter what I do I feel like I am touching them up with each new season. I’m hoping to be able to let this one go soon. (It’s probably a losing battle.)

    I love the Nester and would enjoy a copy of her book! Thank you for a wonderful blog, Melissa. I look forward to each new post.

  7. Thank you, Melissa, for your insights on living, along with the decorating inspiration you share on your blog. I gladly voted for you in the recent contest, because I not only like your down to earth decorating style, but more importantly share your views on priorities. I have been discouraged with many of life’s circumstances, lately, which include the lack of progress on decorating our house. The latter can affect our whole disposition, only if we let it. It pales in significance to being the person we need to be for all those around us Your words were an encouragement this morning, and I am going to check out The Nesting Place again, now.

  8. Yep, I sit here while the kitchen floor is a little grimy with spring time paw prints. Trying to motivate myself, how far should I go with it when it will be raining all week? ..I’m going to embrace the ‘its good enough’ mentally. Thank you for letting me know I am not the only one!

  9. I totally need to embrace the wisdom of The Nester’s new book! My husband just changed business’s and is moving his office home! Help, there is, of course, no spare room!

    Please enter me for the book, I need all the help I can get!

  10. Help, I need to learn how to let a little chaos in! I stress trying to make it all perfect all the time.

  11. My home is bulging with imperfection, but also heaping full of love – and that is what life is all about. I am blessed indeed!

  12. I have two little ones so my house never stays clean for long. There are lots of “deep cleaning” jobs that don’t get done as often as they should, but I have to remind myself that it’s ok. I want my kids to remember me playing with them, reading to them, and being present with them; not remember me always cleaning while they played on their own.

  13. The farm is for sale so this place is perfectly messy and cluttered with packed boxes are stacked in every room and it’s not finished yet. I realize it’s not optimum to have packed boxes and not much staging but this is a working farm and am prayerful God is in the details. The owner He wants will find me. I am looking forward to nesting in a new place though…downsizing and all.

  14. We are in the middle of renovating our house and sometimes I need to step back and remind myself it can’t be finished all at once and learn to accept the still unfinished areas. So hard for a perfectionist!

  15. It is very hard for someone who craves order to see the mess around her; but I am trying hard to find the “good” in those messes. It is all about perspective.

  16. My big, off-center orange brick fireplace!

  17. Jennifer D. says

    I’m trying to embrace the mess and chaos that comes with my kids. I want to make home where I am and not where I want to be in the future.

  18. Maggie H. says

    I think my biggest challenge at home is getting the hubs on board with being neat and organized. I never realized how much of a neat freak I was until we started living together. Every day it is an internal struggle of not letting the mess make me anxious and crossing that VERY THIN line of being a nag! Do I suck it up and pick up constantly since that’s the way I want the house or ask for help???

  19. I like orderly, minimal. My family? Not so much. But our home is well lived in, and every inch of is it used. There’s nothing better than having family, friends, and animals all stop over and share a laugh. If I don’t win the book, I’ll be sure to get my own copy. Thanks for sharing it!

  20. There are ALWAYS paper piles, dust tumbleweeds, dishes, etc. at any given time – sometimes you just have to sit on the porch with your dog and your coffee and appreciate ALL that life gives you!

  21. I love your message about imperfection. I strive to have a stylish home, but I have two small kids, a dog, my Mom and often nieces and nephews running around. I work a full time job too. … I just can’t keep up sometimes and my home shows it. I trip or step on toys; either the dogs or the kids. Lately I just let it go and say to myself it’s part of life, I actually try to relish it because one day they’ll be grown and I’ll probably miss it.

  22. I love this blog and hers as well – this book would be a welcome addition!!! LOVE the puppies and chaos! I miss it sooooo much – empty nester syndrom is taking me over!!!!

  23. Pet hair! I clean everyday and it just “shows up” it drives me crazy!

  24. Dede Jackson says

    It’s frustrating to make a house beautiful when you can’t afford a designer or all the expensive pieces that show up in so many photos. I love The Nester’s concept of making my home mine now- and filling it with what I love, not what others have already designed!

  25. A gazillion paint swatches on my living room wall. I’m so indecisive. Can’t seem to settle on one. My son came home from school the other day and asked if the wall was staying that way. He thought it was intentional lol.

  26. No matter your stage in life…imperfection abounds! And…we could always use advice on how to cope with it all. I would love to win a copy…thanks for the opportunity! ;)

  27. jo wyrosdick says

    We moved into my mother’s home a year ago. After living in our last home for 20 years it was hard to move. I am still living with boxes, too much furniture and renovating projects. Some days are very overwhelming. I keep reminding myself that it takes time and will get better.

  28. kathy benton says

    Love both of your blogs. I am embracing a hardwood floor which has been “loved to death” by high energy boys and dogs over the past 14 years! What a lucky woman I am!!

  29. Trying to get my mind around that adult children can leave as much mess around as toddlers! But they’re not as cute to pick up after and their shoes are much bigger. I try to keep reminding myself that this stage too, shall pass, and to enjoy what I have.

  30. I’m currently a vendor at three different antique malls in three different cities none of which are in the city I actually live. My dining room table is covered with new inventory items waiting to be tagged, cleaned and hauled to each booth. My desk is loaded with paper work and my entryway looks like a shipping center. It’s a beautiful and imperfect life but I am walking each day in grace. Thank you for the chance to win!

  31. My heart aches just a tad when I spy white slipcovers . . . it’s never going to happen at my house, because we have 2 black dogs + 1 black cat! What were we thinking? J/K!

  32. The scribbles on the walls from my little artists make me mumble the Nester’s mantra to myself. :)

  33. I pick up all day and then they bring more into the house and scatter it at the end of the day…then I start over!

  34. Her book arrived yesterday and I finished it before bed. It is an amazing read – a condensed, but better version of her blog message. I loved the back stories she shared (I’ve read her for YEARS but some of the details were new.) I’m not entering the drawing but the space I am focusing on is our “formal” living room & dining room. We are NOT formal people so I’m working on making those rooms function for us on a day to day basis. No rooms will be off limits or for company only or there as display pieces. That just will not work for us.

  35. I haven’t cleaned my house deeply in over two years. There. I said it. Multiple surgeries and a bout of pneumonia have left me staring at the unpainted walls (and dirty carpet) while I recoup after each surgery. I’m in the middle of redecorating and updating every room in my home and while small things are getting done in between the resting I’m learning to live with everything else that has not been done. I am learning patience after all these years. And I am fully aware that I’m lucky to be alive, to have a home, and to be able to still pursue my dreams. I read Myquillyn’s post yesterday and was deeply touched. I’m wanting to read her new book asap!

  36. I am in the middle of 4 painting projects, all put on hold due to hubby’s flu, bad weather and lack of time in general. So a can or two sits in 4 different rooms…along with the supplies….oooo…do not like that! And the little piles seem to attract other things that mysteriously appear next to them…, ok, the pile has started, lets add to it! Not like us at all, but it is happening, none the less! :) The book looks so lovely! Thanks for the give away!

  37. It’s funny, but it seems like the more God makes me at peace with myself and where I am in His love the more I find I can enjoy all of my life, including my home. Dust allergies and a dislike of visual clutter make relaxing in the midst of less than perfect surroundings challenging but I’ve come a long way! I’m ok with the artwork yet to be hung and the walls that need painting, however, Melissa…your gorgeous floors do make my intense dislike of my “builder beige” carpet more difficult!

  38. Throughout a massive renovation on our home, my wants rarely matched available funds. It was excruciating to pick and choose how to best spend what we had. I still find myself disappointed and wishing we could have all my “dream choices”. What a big fat waste of negative energy, time and peace that’s been over the years. To an outsider it’s beyond beautiful with all it’s imperfections. Why do we choose to focus on the negative? I’ve enjoyed learning and accepting limitations from the Nester with her #IDHTBPTBB. I’ll think of it and remind myself to appreciate the beauty and good all around me.

  39. Sometimes when I get frustrated with my floorplan I make an effort to mentally list the things that I like about living in the country! Thanks for the chance to win the book….love your blog!

  40. Our den is our imperfect area right now. We have a round table in there that has become the ultimate “catchall” for every piece of paper in our house. It’s crazy and we really need to make some type of command center to help keep track of the clutter.

  41. my husband and i live in an upstairs apartment of a house. it is our first home that we are celebrating our 3 year anniversary in TOMORROW! it is small, but FULL of character! i love color and life at every turn in my home. sometimes i have to force myself to remove some of the tiny little momentos that i have displayed on EVERY surface in EVERY room! every time we hang a picture, we can hear the old cinderblock crumbling behind the wall, and our large kitchen/foryer only has one 4-plug plate. BUT…..we loooooove the imperfections of our home. we are so blessed with natural light in every room and old hardwood floors. unlucky us that we basically live in an attic is countered by lucky us that every room has “storage” closets…because we live in an attic! we love our home with all its imperfections and cluttered ways. we are truly living life there.

  42. I live in a parsonage and am so blessed by how God provides for us. Currently our church is taking steps to do some updating so there is a lot in process right now. It is a constant reminder to be thankful.

  43. The thing I’m trying to embrace the most most is that everything has a season. This too shall pass! A messy house may be due to a busy season with so many fun things happening in life all at once, but it’s still our home base at the end of the day and we do our best to offset the dust with a lot of love!

  44. j.mae scott says

    My sweet husband and I are newly married (one month today!) and in the swirl of meshing our lives together. I moved into his house and he has graciously given me liberty to make whatever changes are needed to transform the house into our home. At the same time that we are unpacking boxes and finding places to put things, I am beginning to develop my philosophy of hospitality and home-making. I’m making peace with the imperfections (and they are many!) by remembering that neither the Lord nor my husband expect perfection at overnight (or ever!), and that order and function in a home are not formed in a single day. :)

  45. julie gonsalves says

    I home school 4 kids. There are a LOT of imperfections and messes that go along with that….and virtually no kid-free time to clean them up!

  46. I get caught up on trying to make our house a pleasant place to live. I find myself getting frustrated when it’s not that ideal I have in my mind. I would love to read this book and remind myself that it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

  47. Great article. I struggle every day to not clean up every single pile of cat hair or chewed up dog toy that I find when I get home from work, and instead to come home and RELAX rather than immediately picking up the vacuum. This also makes me feel a lot better about the scratch marks my cats left on my new leather chairs and the chewed up couch, courtesy of my pup. :) Growing up, our family pets were never allowed on carpeted areas or on furniture, so sometimes when I’m cleaning up hairballs on the furniture I wish I didn’t allow the pets to have free reign of the house…but then they snuggle up on the couch with me later and remind me that the furniture is just “stuff” and that the joy they bring to our house is totally worth it all!

  48. Imperfections to me are just signs of life being lived. The scratch on a rocker from a childs shoe buckle while being rocked, the scratches on the floor from our beloved Newfie’s nails, the chips on my grandmother’s china…. Imperfections show a history of life, love, and belonging. I’m a 74 year old woman and I’m learning to accept the imperfections in me, too! Looking forward to reading Myquillyn’s book.

  49. I’m trying to remember that it’s a okay that half a dozen large projects are almost done (and have been for months) around the house. What little family time I can find always seems to trump it!

  50. Where do I start? I can’t stand my walls, they have hand prints and god-knows-what prints. My floors? Constantly sticky from 20 little fingers and toes. The living room? Toys all over. But I wouldn’t change it. Each day I look around and this is the season of my life…2 little children and not enough hours in the day.

  51. Imperfections in my home. . . oh boy. We are a family of 3 (one of whom is a 5 year old) in a 900sq ft apartment. We have imperfect areas in each room! The dust bunnies and lost crayons under the couches. The 3 bikes that keep pulling the bike rack out of the wall. The mail, artwork from school and shoes that pile up by the entry. The tiny kitchen with no counter space and 4 trashcans (recycling and compost included). The plants that need trimming.

    Our home is a happy, warm and welcoming one, but it is not perfect by any measure. We’re doing a ‘refresh’ project this month, to edit and purge, but it will never be ‘perfect’ and that’s ok.

  52. Well today, as I look out my outside on this sunny Portland day, it’s the very dirty, need of a good cleaning windows!

  53. I am at the point in my life where I care most that our home works for us, giving us peace & comfort. Not there yet, however, since we have some major remodeling to do but we are rethinking the spaces.

  54. The piles! I feel like I have to have everything out in eyesight or it might get forgotten. Therefore, those imperfections are all around my house. I would love to read this book! Thank you for the opportunity!

  55. I love Nester and I am so thrilled about her new book. I would like to think I am a recovering perfectionist. For too many years I have been really stuck in trying to make everything in my home perfect. I’m TRYING to relax a little bit more and not only enjoy, but embrace the moments that life presents.

  56. Melissa your blog has inspired me always and I embrace the imperfection in my home. After being homeless this year I am so grateful for the roof over my head in 300 square feet, my pet laying on our couch , a sweet jumble of books and family photos, and the great blessings that I have in the gift of creating a home that reflects the beauty of everyday life.

  57. I am trying to embrace kid toys and messes all over the house. Too soon they’ll be in school full-time, and I’ll maybe, sort of miss it?

  58. I am embracing the imperfection of my 70s bathroom. And my messy storeroom. And I would welcome this book.

  59. I am trying to love the black carpet in our living room (we rent so can’t change it) by layering a persian rug over it!

  60. I have a whole upstairs full of imperfections that I choose to ignore right now :) From the out of place furniture to the paint touch ups that don’t match, I’m just choosing to be happy with my bigger house knowing that it will take a while to get it just how I want it.

  61. I’m learning to embrace the imperfections in DIY and home renovations. Not only the imperfections and messes along the way, but many times the small imperfections in the final product…I’m starting to appreciate the added character and lived in/loved look.

  62. I’m embracing the fact that with children who are 8, 3, 1 and another on the way…our weekend projects are never going to be quite as productive as we’d like! Just the daily training, disciplining, playing and picking up from their mess leaves little time to actually paint a bathroom or finish yard work! haha

  63. Hmmm, for me, probably the front of our house, I don’t really have a good routine to keep plants alive so every time I try to pretty up the front walk with flowers… they die because I forget to water/prune them. >_<

  64. a pile of Dick Francis mystery books next to my lipgloss-stained coffee mug.
    a cozy blanket strewn over my favorite daydreaming chair.
    cat toys that were dragged around the house in the wee small hours of the night.
    a hiking bag stuffed with empty Clif bar wrappers, a reminder of Saturday’s hike up Cape Falcon.
    a dusting of flour on the kitchen counter from Sunday’s cookie baking extravaganza.

    sometimes a mess. always remnants of a week well-lived.

  65. a fresh coat of paint makes a lot of imperfections fade……

  66. Jennifer C. says

    I’m living in a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom (no kitchen) space above my grandparent’s garage right now. Need I say more?

  67. I love my kiddos and pup but run into the same thing as you – but sometimes the chaos of it all just gets to me. I figure once they all move out (quite a while for us with little ones) it will be quiet and clean.

  68. It’s funny… Two years ago, I was a girl who loved classic, formal, federalist, and frilled. I thought we would buy a great big colonial and fill it with leather and old books. And, inexplicably, we found a mess of a little cottage instead, complete with lots of wallpaper to remove, a horrifically tiny old kitchen, and more problems than I could shake a stick at. I have no idea what made me fall in love with this piece of junk I call home, but love is crazy like that… Two years later, many of the rough edges have been sanded away. We have a beautiful brand new kitchen, a new roof, new shake siding, NO more wallpaper (Lord in heaven be praised), and gallons upon gallons of fresh paint. And there is still lots more to do. But you know what? Working through, living with and sometimes accepting the imperfections changed me. My style is different now… Relaxed. Laid back. I hope I am more welcoming, more loving. I know I am more patient with myself, my flaws, my process. I am grateful for the sometimes agonizing process of making this place home. Not because I ended up with my dreamhouse, but because it made me more like the person I dream of becoming. :)

  69. My dining room table is completely imperfect. I can’t seem to figure out how to keep clutter off of it! I would love to read this book!

  70. We can choose to see the mess as a mess or as a beautiful part of life. I’m embracing the pile of blankets and bags from our camping weekend still in my entry way. I would love to win a copy of her book!

  71. I have a yellow sofa that we bought off of craigslist- it isn’t my ideal sofa, and I probably would have chosen something different if we had bought it new, but it gives us seating when people come over, and I am choosing to be content with something less than perfect so that we can enjoy our home and room today:)

  72. Paper, flyers, coupons, school papers…..I’m buried!
    I edit everyday….open mail, toss envelopes, junk etc.
    I am mindful of orderly folders…papers are organized, filed etc…and there seems to be a never ending flow.
    I sure you know what I mean….
    Have a great day all!

  73. We Always have several projects in progess, not to mention what’s in our garage. I knew we were on the right track when my daughter went out for a run and came back on a bike she found left out for the trash!
    Anyway… Thanks for keeping things authentic.

  74. We Always have several projects in progess, not to mention what’s in our garage. I knew we were on the right track when my daughter went out for a run and came back on a bike she found left out for the trash!
    Anyway… Thanks for keeping things authentic.

  75. Dog hair tumble weed.

  76. My husband and I just bought our first (tiny) house and I – being a classic type-A OCD personality – am trying to embrace things not being just how I want them to be right away – not totally blog-worthy, if you know what I mean. Hopefully I’ll be able to get these OCD tendencies under control before kids come – because I know they will make any perfect order completely the opposite! (But hopefully full of joy, regardless of the mess!)

  77. TRYING to love my hand-me-down furniture!!

  78. Jan Buckles says

    We’re getting ready to move into a different house very soon, and my prayer is that as we make it our home, it’s always open to friends and family, whether as something planned or on a moment’s notice! Join our imperfect home with more love, laughter, and fellowship! I can’t wait to read this new book.

  79. Lathe and Plaster! Tearing it out, patching it, trying to hang pictures on it #1841farmhouse :)

  80. A few years ago, I hated being in my kitchen. It could never stay clean for more than 5 minutes and the orangish-brown cabinets were such a downer. So I painted the cabinets a beautiful light blue, and now my sink can be full of dirty dishes but my cheerful cabinets still bring a smile to my face. My home is far from perfect, but I’ve learned through this blog and Nesting Place to add beauty where you can and stop stressing about what you can’t control. :)

  81. Susan Lewis says

    To look around me, when I’m in my reading chair recovering from surgery, and look through the dust, dirt, clutter, dog hair, accumulating mail, and wilting plants to realize the gift is simply in being alive and HOME…that is my goal! Thank you for the timely reminder, Susan

  82. Delaying decorating for fear of it not looking just right.
    monk5 at charter dot net

  83. Ah, things are never perfect, are they? My husband and I just had a contractor gut our bathroom and start over from scratch. Even in new construction like this, things happen and you just have to get over it. Tiles get scratched by the hammer drill as you go to install the toilet paper holder. The installer puts up the accent tile with the rust on the back of it instead of choosing another piece.They use the wrong color of grout on the floor. It’s brand new and not-quite-right, but I have to keep reminding myself that it’s light years better than the leaky 60-year-old tiles we had before, and for that I am grateful.

  84. My goal is to have a home that is inviting and open. I used to think that I needed to be more like Martha Stewart and have perfection in my home to have people over. I am learning that people are happy to come where they feel loved and welcome, and most won’t even judge my dirty floors.

  85. I honestly have to keep telling myself that things are never perfect. Right now I am striving for uncluttered! I would LOVE a copy of the book.

  86. My funky windows in the back of my house. They are different ones than the front of the house. Weird but try to embrace it

  87. Our 4th child is only 9 months. The first year of each of our children’s life has brought lots of chaos and makes it near I possible to keep our home clean the way I like it. Over the years I’ve learned to accept this messy baby stage knowing it is temporary and will pass.

  88. Love this post. Love the Nester and would love to win a copy! Thank you!

  89. Probably our inability right now to buy furniture. We’ve got a lot of hand-me-down furniture, which we’re grateful for, so the challenge is in getting it all to look good together. :)

  90. this post came at the perfect time for me. i’ve been battling my 14 month old son on his quest to empty the contents of every drawer in our house…over and over and over again! giving up on the idea of perfection is key!

  91. Hmmm where to begin? Dog hair from two large dogs, carpet that desperately needs replacing (with anything but carpet, please Lord), 1970s paneling, and too much clutter. That will do for starters, though there’s much more.

  92. Let’s see,,, a dog that sheds all the time, another dog who prances and flits under my feet. Teens who drop everything and seem to think there is a pick up fairy that lives here. Broken leaking through the dining room ceiling washer this morning. Of course my husband left yesterday for 10 days. A wonderful handy man son in law who comes through at times tlike this. A daughter who has 3 kids and they help wihtthe messes too. Clutter….. Feeling well overwhelmed right now with stuff and messes.

  93. Right now I’m trying to embrace this season of life that includes never ending mountains of laundry and kids who don’t really care how our house looks.

  94. dog fur… everywhere… even seconds after i put away the vacuum cleaner… the dog hair is like tumbleweeds… just can’t get rid of it.. LOL

  95. Jessica Mansfield says

    I am learning to embrace the wood paneling in my current rented home! : )

  96. Jennifer Jackson says

    I sometimes feel I am drowning in a sea of paperwork. Things I should file and things I should shred. Add a layer of cat hair over the top. Welcome to my home.

  97. Kid mess! I clean and they pull more out. Never ending cycle!!

  98. Elizabeth says

    I’m just trying to embrace the daily chaos that comes with having three small boys at home. They wreck it all faster than I can tidy it up again. Pre-kids we were waiting for our house to be “done” before inviting over neighbors at our old house. Since having the three boys and moving, I’m learning more and more to invite people into our messes. Somehow we all feel better and more at home when we see the messes of others. It makes us all more real. I’m still learning. :)

  99. The imperfect for me to embrace right now is…curling, discolored linoleum floors and spotted carpet….while we wait and save and dream! :) Thank you for the giveaway!

  100. Hi Melissa, The main imperfection I’m trying to embrace in my home is its size: 602 square feet–but it’s paid for! There are just 2 of us here most of the time now–though we did raise our 4 kids here, too. But when I see pictures from third world countries, I realize just how blessed we are, and the imperfections aren’t so imperfect any more. Thanks for the giveaway!

  101. Anne Marie says

    Clutter, clutter, clutter – that is my problem – to much junk. Two kids equals two much junk!!

  102. I am learning to let go of some things and learning to embrace more imperfections. I would LOVE a copy of this book . Thanks from South Carolina

  103. Love seeing the “real” life behind the blog!:)

  104. Most recently, I’m embracing the imperfections I find in myself which has caused me to be less concerned about the imperfections in my home. Grieving the loss of a six week old grandson has put life into perspective real fast. We live in an imperfect world, but one day the perfect world we long for will be a reality. Until then, I hope to not put such emphasis on the small imperfect things that used to drive me crazy . . . the imperfections in my home, in others, and in myself. Loving others is just way more important.

  105. I’m trying to embrace the fact that, with three little boys, ages 10 to 7 months, there are always going to be cleats, baseball gloves, helmets, toy weapons, and various kinds of balls all over my house. And that there will probably never be a time when I don’t have to remind someone to put something away. And that a well decorated kids’ room is still, in fact, a KIDS’ room, and it is never going to look like a magazine (or well styled blog) photo.

  106. I struggle with putting all the laundry away and especially with all the dog hair and drool marks everywhere!

  107. Love your message to embrace the imperfect.

  108. I have 2 pugs so I really need this book.

  109. Embracing the cream floor tile with matching grout that will never come clean! At least it keeps our feet cool in summer. Our home is imperfect, wrecked plumbing (tree roots), low popcorn ceilings, dark rooms (the same trees), a hodgepodge of finishes, cracked tile counters…yet, I love it. It’s our first home and where our son was born, and where we have experienced God’s grace again and again. Oh yeah, embracing the chaos that comes when home is church and work and school – so there’s usually piles of papers, mail to sort, laundry, crafts and creative projects waiting to be finished and so on :)

  110. Ha! I wish I had order at all in my home! I definitely embrace the imperfection! I have a messy hubby, a messy 8 year old son and a 14 month old daughter. I don’t think I have to say she’s messy too :P

    I definitely need to dust, need to do dishes and need to organize a lot of clutter! But my kids are sheltered, fed, and clothed and loved. And happy! Imperfect is ok for now. :)

  111. I think I have embraced imperfection well living with 3 lovely children. My 2 year old thinks the floors are much prettier when her abc magnets are spread all over them. I’ve learned to accept it, life is more fun that way. Thanks for the giveaway.

  112. Would love to win this book.

  113. I’m trying to embrace the fact that in this stage of life, renting apartments with builder-grade everything is our reality! I try to focus on my gratitude for having a home that keeps us safe and cared for.

  114. We are finishing the planning stages of building our new home on a few acres out in the sticks. It will be months before we are in our home that we designed especially for our largish family. Trying to keep my patience with the inconvenient rental we are currently in is a daily challenge!! I am constantly reminding myself to live in the now and embrace it!

  115. When I was younger I kept my house almost perfect. Drove myself and my family crazy in the pursuit of perfection. Crazy times. Now after the kids have flown the coop and it is just me and my sweet hubby, my house is much more relaxed. Much better, wish I had spent more time with my kids building forts out of cushions and blankets rather than getting upset when they did just that. Although I did allow them to play in the mud outside. I guess I didn’t mind the outside mess! Older and wiser now, but I would still love to win that book, it would make a great companion to my Miss Mustard Seed book.

  116. Recovering from my 3rd surgery in 5 months leaves me staring imperfection all around me…and honestly, I’m okay with that. I’m alive. And I’m thankful. Very thankful. Winning a book would be lovely because one of the things I can do is read :-)

  117. Jeanine Dahl says

    As a working single mom with two big teenage sons and one big black labrador, a recent move to a smaller home, a bathroom remodel in progress and only so many hours in a day … imperfection is the rule rather than the exception. Living with chaos is a daily mental battle for this OCD neat freak! It is *very* helpful to be reminded that, despite my urge to constantly complain about the mess and spend all my time running a vacuum cleaner, there are other, far more important priorities in life. :-)

  118. Kaye Kruetzman says

    In the middle of my TV room is a Disney Princess folding table and chairs loaded down with the Wedding Palace of My Little Ponies on it (at least two dozen ponies included) and Barbie dolls and clothes mixed in with the ponies. When it is gone, I will be sad…because it will mean my sweet little 5-year-old grand-daughter Lily is growing up. While I’m not crazy about pony décor, I love her with all my heart. So, I’ve learned to live with her treasures all around me — because that’s what grandmas do. (It’s a little harder for moms, but you may be a grandma someday — and then you’ll probably feel the same.)

  119. Mostly I am having trouble embracing when peoples (husband and kids) take a nice new towel from a matching set to use with paint/gunk/sticky stuff or something that leaves big black marks….and they usually want to use the big towel or the hand towel size…never the little washcloths that can easily be replaced. How do I embrace that? I don’t have $300 to replace sets of towels every time this happens. Restoration Hardware and Ralph lauren used to be my favorite… Not any more. 6 or more sets of towels ruined. Oh, wait. they all say, Not ME”.

  120. I am trying to embrace being a mom working full time and going to school when I want to be home with my son. Then juggling the mess and school work when I am home. And did I mention he pet fur everywhere lol.

  121. My husband is a minister who does most of his sermon prep at home. That means books and notes everywhere!
    I would love to receive a copy of this book – thanks for offering it.

  122. Laurie Takens says

    The imperfections of my desk…where I throw mail, papers, receipts, and don’t go through it often enough to keep up on it. I need to read your latest post on Desk Organization I guess!

  123. I’m trying to embrace those empty spaces…I can’t seem to hang anything, because I want it to be just perfect first.

  124. As a first time homeowner (and with recently becoming a mom to twins!) I am trying to embrace imperfections in the form of baby things all over the house and empty walls and rooms that I am DYING to fill. But I am absolutely learning to be content with where I am right now and that over time my house will become much more of a home. I have been eyeing this book for some time and would LOVE a copy of my own!

    Also, a random question – What kind of couch covers are these? I am looking into getting some, but so many of them look really drapey. I really like yours!

  125. Embracing popcorn ceilings…for now!

  126. Dog hair & greasy mechanic boots!

  127. Yes, yes, yes, there can be beauty even where imperfections are! There are plenty of those here – our home is a work in progress.

  128. Brenda Swinton says

    I need to embrace the trail of chaos my sweet daughter, Charlotte, leaves all over the house. Little piles of this and that that tell the story of what she has been doing or where she is going. One year from now she will graduate from high school and then go off to college that next fall. Why am I in such a hurry to clean it all up when I am going to miss it so much when Charlotte goes off to school? So enjoy what you can’t control and leave it in God’s hands to put all in the right place.

  129. I feel overwhelmed by imperfections at this time. We have (temporarily) downsized, and I have stuff everywhere! Our extra furniture and other large items are in storage, but it’s all the little things that are driving me crazy. Maybe Nester’s book is just what I need….

  130. Elisabeth says

    Oh, I’m embracing that beauty is found in the mundane everyday life, not just in exotic adventures..

  131. We are getting our house ready to put on the market. It is so hard for me to not want to redo everything and try to make it perfect. I am driving my husband insane with the projects I keep thinking up to make it better, more perfect, more appealing… I love the Nester’s blog. I think I need a serious dose of her wisdom on imperfection these days.

  132. As a former “perfectionist” I now realize that living life with your family and friends is more important than a showroom home.

  133. Penny Oliver says

    We have a large upstairs bonus room that I would love to finish for my two teenagers to have a hang out space for them and their friends. I really want our home to be the gathering place to make sure they are safe and happy!

  134. Amber Martin says

    I’m trying to embrace the daily messes and clutter that come from living life with a husband and 3 little ones. Instead of stressing over the mess I’m trying to focus on the positives such as having a nice home to live in…we just recently moved from an apartment to a house so I have much to be grateful for! I would love to win a copy of this book :)

  135. Seems to me you choose to show us the “perfect” most of the time, Melissa. ;-). I checked out The Nesting Place; a little too chaotic and messy of a style for me. I know she’ s preaching we should embrace that, but to me there’s a difference between imperfect and messy or poor quality. Your place never looks messy in what you show us and the quality of your projects, professionally done or otherwise, always looks finished and neatly done.

  136. A large dog, a cat and 2 young children–need I say more? But they bring so much joy to my life and I know I need to relish my time with my girls while they are young instead of focusing on the trails they leave behind. Present, not Perfect! It is because of blogs like yours and the Nester that I have come to learn that real life doesn’t look like the pictures in a magazine, and that is just fine.

  137. I’m sitting here surrounded by Legos, 2 golden retrievers, a pile
    Of mail, soccer bags and diaper bags. I am so thankful for everything I
    Have but simply don’t have the ability to “style” like some of the
    People I enjoy reading about. I have seen lots of post about “The Nesting
    Place” book and would really really love to have a copy.

  138. Bike that are currently being stored in the living room and a few other items that just don’t have a good place are what I am trying to embrace. But I’m also trying to make little bits of beautiful in the midst of the tiny apartment living.

  139. I’m living with the imperfections of a 1927 farmhouse! Dirt tracked in from the garden, missing trim, unused pellet stover turned into plant stand, slanty, stained hardwood floors. It gives me shelter and reminds me that I’m not perfect either, and I don’t have to be.

  140. I have a very small kitchen. It is cute and has that vintage meets modern vibe, but it is just so small! And all the homework stuff, pencils, crayons, paper, books, etc., makes me a bit crazy!!

  141. Jennie W says

    I have two little boys and an acre and a half yard that is currently dirt while we re-level and them seed it all. So. The house is far from perfect right now.

  142. Barbara W says

    Walls!!! I know they need adorned but it scares me.

  143. I try to just deal. It is hard as I like everything done and clean, but I would spend a lot of time cleaning then. With two boys, 2 dogs and a husband life can get hectic. I just wish my husband could learn to go with the flow.

  144. jennifer says

    Every morning I come downstairs and try to remember that these messes are a blessing and so are the people and pets in my life that create them. 2 dogs, 3 kids, and 1 husband (he’s the messiest)!!

  145. Karen on bainbridge island says

    A little mess makes everything around it look at little better. We lost our beloved Bulldog Riley in March. Now our house is a little too clean, a little too neat without the bed and the toys. If things are too perfect, the house looks good, but your home lacks soul.

  146. Karen on Bainbridge Island says

    A perfect house is a soulless home. We lost our beloved Bulldog Riley in March, and I miss the dog bed and the toys strewn around…I even miss the dust bunnies.

  147. Karen on Bainbridge Island says

    Sorry…didn’t mean to post multiple times. I looked like my first comment disappeared but there it is!

  148. I try to embrace the imperfections of cats and dogs and a messy husband. (Not always successfully!)

  149. Jennifer Stone says

    I love the Nester and her mantra. I am in the middle of a move so my whole life is a bit chaotic; not to mention imperfect.

  150. Courtney says

    Some of my favorite memories as a kid come from the imperfect and chaos in our house growing up.
    Trying to be okay with chaos in my own house! Imperfect I can embrace, that makes for the best decorating!

  151. We have a small house which often means useful (but not necessarily pretty) things must be left out on display. I tend to like things tucked away but am trying to embrace the fact that we actually need to live here and not just exist : )

  152. I’m in the middle of attempting to re-roganize our small home and make it work better for us. It feels like there are certain rooms that are on hold, only I have no idea what we are waiting for or to do in them? I wish we had more storage space or niches and am searching pinterest for more ideas!

    Thanks for hosting such a great giveaway!! I would love to win on fo Nester’s books!

  153. Pulling laundry out of the dryer to dress the kids daily is just the beginning of the imperfection that runs through our home. What we lack in organization we try to make up for in bear hugs and sloppy kisses. Thank you for sharing your blog and for this wonderful giveaway.

  154. There are lots of imperfections right now to embrace in our home, especially since we’re not living there due to construction ;-) I try to take the imperfections and work with them.

  155. Love reading all of the posts….I have to add my story…I am a grandmother of Triplets!! Yes talk about Clutter? Yep but that was okay as I look back to the times when they were 2 and 3 yrs. old!! It was constant messes but; that was okay…My daughter never let it bother her…she was friends with other mother of multiples and guess where their play dates were held at?? Yes! At my daughters home because she let them play and didn’t worry about how the house looked until after everybody left and it was time to pick up and put everything to be ed….It taught my now 16yr. old grandchildren that you don’t go to bed without picking up everything and put it in its home place….very rewarding experience for all. For the good times again!!! I would love to receive your book so I could give it to y daughter for a special gift……..Love you site!

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