Among my Advent tasks is a scaled down version of my spring cleaning. I’m not so worried about having yeast in my pantry as I am focused on the clutter in the closets. I am a very orderly and organized person (the mess on my desk notwithstanding). But I live in a home with five little people who have no understanding of just how bothersome it is (to me) to have My Little Pony accessories mixed in with the tea set.
And I can handle My Little Pony. But where I fail entirely is in the Lego and Playmobile arena. I dumped the Lego container yesterday afternoon and told the boys that only Legos were to go back inside it. And we began. Of course, the boys then proceeded to say things like, “Billy, look! You were looking for this piece!” And their sorting and cleaning was distracted by their search for other similar “jewels” for Billy’s “invention.” It was a team effort, but they were playing a different game than I.
A fly on the wall would have heard ten minutes of:
“Is this a Lego?” Affirmative grunt.
“How about this one?” Affirmative grunt.
“Legos?” Affirmative grunt.
“These?” “Oh, that’s Playmobile.”
“How about these?” “Legos.” “Really?” “Yes, Mom, they go to the Millenium Falcon.”
I am way out of my league here. I even contemplated for a few minutes that the entire endeavor to put pieces in the proper containers was really just over-the-top in organization. But then I recovered my senses and finished the job.
After an hour of cleaning the bedrooms, I released the kids to watch some TV. This gave me a chance to stealthily remove from their room all the things that I’ve decided they no longer get to keep. Some of the items were toys they rarely play with and will find a new home with another family via the post thrift store. Other things were broken toys that the kids insist are repairable by Magic Dad with the Gorilla Glue or were accessories to toys long gone.
When the kids came up a bit later, Billy remarked that he could see his dresser. Yes, it’s amazing how one can see the furniture when one puts toys, clothes, books and art projects where they belong. There are still two containers left – a bin of Army guys and a bin of cars. I need to make sure that GI Joe isn’t hanging out at the motor pool, and then the boys’ room is done. In the girls’ room, we need to re-build the Playmobile Palace destroyed by the huns, and then I have some sorting to do in Pete’s closet.
My inner soul will be at clutter-free peace for a week or so. Then comes the onslaught of New Stuff. At least there is room in the closet.