Miller: Clear the dust bunnies

Published 11:38 am Tuesday, November 16, 2021

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The sun’s rays peek into my cozy sitting room, calling my attention to a few dust bunnies.

Oops! Better set aside some time for my own housecleaning.

A little bit ago my youngest son, Ryan, and I found a solid home for sale that had really good bones, as they say, but needed a little love. Well, let me tell you we have been loving and loving that house! But while all the cleaning and renovation was happening one thing didn’t happen; thus the dust bunnies!

I think today is a good day to catch up on things around here, and I’ll definitely try to fit in some time for dusting, which happens to be the least favorite chore of mine. Funny how we all have things we enjoy more than others. I actually know people who like to dust, but I would rather do things that really have an impact that can be noticed — say, like vacuuming.

I remember taking tests as a young person as to what career moves to make and one of the questions had something to do with immediate gratification. I guess that’s what makes me like the things that can be seen. I can immediately walk into a room and notice the nice clean carpet, whereas I might spend hours dusting and not be able to see much difference.

The same thing is true of fixing up a house, and that’s why I like to take before and after pictures. It’s pretty amazing what happens when one person spruces up a bit. This happens at our own homes as well. When we see the neighbors trimming the bushes we take a good look at ours and get out the trimmers. When I see someone’s beautiful fall décor it makes me want to get busy and pull down those boxes of decorations. I guess that is an example of good peer pressure; we are motivated to get our stuff looking good when we see someone else taking care of their place.

The thing that I enjoy about decorating or renovating is the immediate and noticeable impact. However, I also get joy in looking back at my years of parenting. Some days as a parent it was difficult to see what my work was doing. On some days I have to admit I just had to have faith that the twenty thousandth time I said, “Come on guys. You know homework comes before playtime, or lets get those toys picked up before supper” would eventually take root.

But now, as I have opportunity to see my own daughter and sons in their roles as adults, I can think back to all the years of trying to shape and mold them into responsible citizens and good Christian people. I can know in my heart that of all the things we work and strive for parenting may not always have immediate results, but it is so worth everything a parent can do encourage and guide the next generation.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at