Stop waiting for perfect and have the tea party outside

August 18, 2014

Written By

Tabitha Dumas

Added on December 22, 2015: While the mantra is the same, we’re hosting a Christmas Eve tea party this year and nothing in the house is off limits! To read more about my decluttering efforts, visit this post. And stay tuned about how to begin your own decluttering project in 2016! 

It’s one of my many life mantras: “If I wait to do (insert various events and projects) until everything is perfect, it will never happen.”

That’s why I locked my parents out of my house on Christmas Eve and helped my youngest son host a Christmas Eve Back Yard Tea Party Picnic.

The house was a disaster but we had a lovely tea party!

Instead of telling my son, “No, we can’t have a tea party, the house is too messy,” I just told Nana and Papa, “Come in through the side gate…and go to the bathroom before you come.” Faced with the task of cleaning up the whole house to host them inside, I would have not had them over—so instead, I just took the party outside.

Stop waiting for perfect!

Stop waiting for perfect. Have the tea party in the back yard! From the blog

It’s why, when you come over for a play date, I might close my office door. Or why, when you come over to meet with me in my studio, I put up a folding screen in the hall so you can’t see into the family room with the cereal cemented to the table, the cups piled up in the sink, the toys and shoes scattered all over the floor and the fingerprint-covered windows.

It’s also why, when you attend a tea party or birthday shin dig at my house, the doors to the master bedroom, laundry room and maybe even the playroom are locked.  Not only do I stash things but you’ll also find laundry baskets filled with stuff that got cleaned up but not put away. It’s hard enough to host but to pull off an event AND keep the entire house perfect is impossible.

I work from home, I volunteer my heart out, my kids are 8 and 5, my husband works long hours at a demanding job and I am an easily distracted and naturally messy person—so if I waited for things to be perfect (me, the house, the kids), NO-thing would EVER happen.

So do me a favor?

Please don’t ask for the full house tour when you come over.

Please don’t expect fancy food or an immaculate house when you come for a play date.

Please don’t wander into rooms with the door closed.

Just be happy that it’s happening.

And please don’t walk past the screen when it’s up. Save me a little dignity, will ya? 

Stop Waiting for Perfect. Close the door and have the tea party outside. On


Are you waiting on perfect? What can you do to start living it up, despite the imperfections? Let’s talk about it on the Facebook page.


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