Because our ranch home contains 10,000 square feet, we have to make sure it gets cleaned on a regular basis.  Chickens, cows and horses are one thing – “dust bunnies” are quite another.

However, deep cleaning is not very high on the list of “things I like to do” for boys…or men for that matter.  Take for instance the fact most guys must learn how to put their underwear in a basket once they get married.  And many of us have stories of college dorm filth that would make your skin crawl.  I had a buddy who grew a plastic swimming pool full of instant potatoes for an entire semester…on a bet or whim.  I don’t know which is worse.

Growing up in a family of eight required frequent and spontaneous “clean machine,” as my father called it.  When mom left the house for an hour or two, he would rally the troops and urge us onward, with brooms, brushes, vacuum cleaners and black plastic bags.  “We’re gonna make this place shine like the top of the Chrysler building!” he’d should like Carol Burnett in the musical Annie.  We obeyed, but rarely with quite enough determination to please his drill-sergeant persona.

Life is a messy proposition.  Things get dirty.  We can’t go around with plastic on all of our furniture.  We can’t invite people into our homes without getting dirt on our floors.   And so we must make time to clean up the mess.  It’s part of the deal.

This is one of the many things we hope to instill at Whetstone Boys Ranch:

Clean up your mess.  We all make one.  But it’s our choice as to whether we live in it for the rest of our life.

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