Monday, April 13, 2009

can't take the mess

This house has been one of America's top ten biggest residential messes for what seems like months now. I'd take a picture, but that would be too depressing to show anyone.

I have made a start in making a dent in the mess.

Keep in mind that it's ninety percent toys, and I seriously doubt I had a hand in making this toy mess. I have now put up a few, mostly just retaping the bottom of the Cootie box and putting the Cootie parts back in it, and I also picked up all the Battleship pegs that had gotten dumped out of both the red and the blue game boards, or whatever you call them. Battlegrounds maybe?

My next offer of help came in the form of separating toys by type or end location, meaning putting all the Legos in a pile and all the Transformers in a pile and . . .

I've done this in both the playroom and living room. It all happened yesterday, and magically the piles are still mostly separate and distinct.

Now I just need to motivate two boys to finish the job. I won't mention their bedroom, but the floor is invisible beneath a sea of Legos and Littlest Pet Shop and Playmobile. I sound like a really crappy ad for all these toys right now.

And it also just shows how we aren't hippy parents with primary colored, peaceful toys. We don't have large chunks of wood sitting around inviting imagination, and we don't have anything made out of foodstuffs that was both experiment and play. There's nothing wrong with any of that, but it's just not us. We have light sabers and toys that do unending battle with evil. We have monsters and pirates. We also have two naked Raggedy Andys, but that's neither here nor there.

Of course there is a pile for books, everyone from James Patterson to Richard Scarry to Bionicle instructions. I currently have a book pile in the bathroom, but we aren't worried about my tiny mess just now. It's the kids we're worried about.

And that's my day. I keep mentioning cleaning and how I've made it too easy, but we have as of yet failed to do any cleaning. I need to do one or two loads of laundry and put up some clothes I folded last night. I've emptied the dishwasher and need to reload it. I have beer cans to stomp for recycling and a few new ones to rinse. I also need a shower and to be at work by four. Maybe I'll remember to take my knife and sharpen it on the stone at work.

If nothing else gets done I'll definitely work. It's a Monday, and the weather report I checked last night indicated rain, and the sky outside looks as if it's promising a good dousing, but so far it isn't the one hundred percent chance of rain that NOAA suggested. That means I won't have a whole hell of a lot of work to do at work, but it is the one inescapable component of my day.

So, now my plan truly comes to fruition. I will now finish blogging and go find the boys. I'll share with them the news that I need a shower and remind them that video games are a good diversion for them while I'm in the shower. They will be offered the trade of picking up small piles of toys for video games. The older will take the bait quite readily, but the younger, still not able to quite put together the concept of future reward versus current dislike of work, may take some prodding.

And in the end the house will be less not clean. I'll be able to see more of the wretched carpet and will be reminded of the need to vaccuum. I'll put it off for a couple of days while the blanket of toys reforms throughout the house.

And then I've got my week planned.