After reading Erika’s post over at Dorky Mom Doodles, I almost commented in 700 words, but then I realized, I could reply in my very own blog and hold all my readers hostage instead.
Four kids. Three of my kids could get awards in tidiness avoidance.
Sissy was the tidiest one. Her thing was definitely to put things in a place, just not necessarily consistently in the right place. I’d say crazy things like, “Why don’t we put the jewelry in the jewelry box and tights in the sock drawer? Maybe we don’t want doll clothes in the desk?” Still, she kept the floor clean and made her bed. Shoes all in a row.
She would do clean naughty things, like rearrange the pantry and misplace foods she didn’t care for.
The rest of them, to varying degrees, have been slobby.
Bubba had been tidy. I dunno. He went from being one of those kids who separated his white socks from his dark socks to one of those kids wherein you open his door and your mother comes out of your mouth and you talk about pig sties and drawin bugs and “HOW DO YOU EVEN FIND ANYTHING!?” Many, many times, I helped him clean and organize his room before I decided that he was a good kid, wasn’t in trouble, made the grades, and if he wanted to live in filth, perhaps that was none of my business.
I know, I know, I could’ve made him meet my expectations. I’m sure you’re very disappointed in me.
It was easy to see why he didn’t like to clean his room. He had no attention span, plus, by the time he regretted his mess, it’d be overwhelming. Think Absent-Minded Professor. Natural consequences won out, and he’s not a walking disaster now.
Now, Bubba comes home to visit and complains about his sisters. This boy one who peed all over their bathroom as a kid is now rather irritated by straightening irons and wet washcloths.
In Sassy’s defense, her room is crowded. Her room is taken up by larger furniture with AMPLE STORAGE. In teenager, ‘ample storage’ translates to ‘unseen’ and is therefore threatening to one’s sense of self-expression. To truly be loved, all the belongings of Sassy must be visible for worship at all times. We must all walk on the clothes, blankets, and stuffed animals that live in such a wonderland of demonstration. But look out for glasses in the plush zoo, because Sassy’s a cup hoarder like no other. I think it’s a recessive gene from her auntie, who was the same at her age. Let me help you understand: If all the glass tumblers are clean and in the cabinet, there’s not actually room for them. Usually the shelf is empty by half.
Sassy’s too busy to clean, so generally it’s “You can’t go until your room is clean.”
Again, I can’t complain, she’s a good kid who makes the grades and stays out of trouble. So she lives like a messy vampire with a stuffie fetish and an insatiable thirst for swate tay, whaddya gonna do?
Moo is basically Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout. Even when she ‘cleans’ her room, it’s not clean and it often has a smell. “How wet was that towel when it died on the floor?” “Did a cat puke in here?” “Phew! Is this a nail salon?” Moo’s usual methods for clean room avoidance are “It’s not that bad,” and “I have homework.” Actually, Moo uses homework as an excuse to try to get out of everything… and she goes to bed first, like, willingly, even though she knows the towels in the dryer are hers to fold… and there’s still a basket of jeans outside her door…
Moo was the first kid to ask, “If Bubba’s room can be messy, why can’t mine?” This is dangerous territory for parents. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I truly believe Bubba gave Moo lessons in how to make and hide messes. But she’s a good kid, stays out of trouble, eats her broccoli, and makes good grades.
My own room is not dirty or messy. But, if you walk over to my side of the bed, the non-murder-you-can’t-see-it-from-the-doorway side, you may find assorted discarded pajamas on the floor. You will absolutely find ten thousand used kleenexes, a dozen hairbands, and if you look closely enough — maybe crawl around on the floor — you might find the remote I never can.
Rumor has it that I was a slobby kid. I don’t know if that’s true, because my parents are neat freaks. In terms of kids’ rooms cleaner and tidier than my own kid room, I remember only two, The Mister’s and Kiwi’s — and their parents are also neat freaks. Our kids say we are, but they’re wrong, they’re slobby and wrong! They tell us their friends’ rooms are much worse, but we don’t know.
I’d ask you if you’re slobby or accused of being a neat freak, but the truth is, I don’t care, cause you don’t live here. Still, feel free to comment.