Household, Kids, Life

Pick. Up. Your. Stuff.

The kids have been home fulltime again for over 4 weeks now. (They went virtual Monday of Thanksgiving week.)

I am feeling READY for them to go back to school. With the colder weather and no sports happening AND now no school (winter break) to keep them occupied, I am just feeling like there is not really enough for them to do. Especially since I have to work- it’s not like I can sit around doing fun projects with them or taking them out hiking in the cold, etc.

The gravitational pull of the screeeeeeeens is strong in our household right now. And I’m pretty sure I do not want to see their step count total most days, because I’m sure it is pathetic.


One thing they are excellent at: messing up the house. I’m not entirely sure how one messes up the house while sitting on the couch playing video games, but, it happens.

It’s not that they are toddlers and “make” huge messes. It’s more of an issue of conveniently “not seeing” everyday items lying about that are out of place and need to be put away/ straightened up. EVER.

My kids are pretty decent at doing scheduled chores. They can scrub toilets, wash dishes, vacuum, etc. What they are NOT good at (currently) is taking ownership/ responsibility for a space ON THEIR OWN without someone asking them to clean up.

If a sweatshirt is shed and dropped on the floor during piano practice time, there is a 99.4% chance that sweatshirt will stay there indefinitely. If they, let’s say, open a package of microwave popcorn, there’s probably a 50/50 shot if the plastic wrap will hit the garbage can. If they DO throw it away, and a little chunk of plastic gets accidentally left on the counter, there is a 100% chance that no one will ever “realize” it and grab that piece of garbage and dispose of it at a later time. It will just live on the counter, permanently. A new decorative fixture!

It all makes me think of this Texas mom I heard about last year:

She must have had the same issue. Quote: “I’ve literally watched one of my kids drop a macaroni noodle and then step over it as if it were in the way or something.” 😂

So she did an experiment. She took a little scrap of paper (i.e. garbage) and tucked a $5 bill underneath it. Then, she dropped it on the bathroom floor, in plain sight.

Then, she waited. This was a highly trafficked bathroom, by her kids AND husband alike! NO ONE PICKED UP THE GARBAGE!!!! FOR 4 DAYS!!! When someone finally did, it was by accident, when it got caught up with her daughter’s pile of clothes after a shower.

Her daughter’s response? “Ooh, $5 were under there!” And then she pocketed the money and tossed the paper on the bathroom countertop!!!! LOL!!!! Case in point. (article here).

I do not know what the solution is to this, honestly. My general line is, “Do you not SEE the (wrapper/ cup/ clothing item/ messed up blanket on the floor/ ________)????? Why can I see it, but you can’t??? If you can see it, why are you IGNORING IT???”

Then their usual response is, “Oh, sorry Mom,” while they scamper to pick it up. Mildly appeases me for the moment, but why do I always have to say something?!?!? Why?? I think I might start charging them 50 cents for every time I need to remind them to pick up after themselves. I might as well profit from this situation. I absolutely refuse to raise boys that will turn into slobby men leaving their socks around as adults one day!! 🙂

Phew. Rant over. In happier news, we did finish our final batches of cookies this week (the sugar cookie cut-outs):

Day #11 of 12 Days of Christmas Challenge: another 24 hours no social media up today!

Daily Gratitude:

I am grateful for Christmas falling on a Thursday/Friday so I get a 4 day weekend off this year. 🙂

4 thoughts on “Pick. Up. Your. Stuff.”

  1. Man this would drive me crazy, too. I think it’s just a stage of life or something. I am sure my mom had the same beef with all of us. My husband is the tidier in our family. He’s always coming over to where I sit to clear dishes or throw things away but that’s situational for us since I am feeding a baby. But he is super tidy in general. So when friends talk about their husbands not picking up/being messy I feel really lucky. But I don’t know if his mom and dad did anything to foster that behavior or if he just ended up that way! Our toddler LOVES to throw things away so he will happily throw garbage away. But he makes a crazy mess each day so picking up is part of our bedtime routine. Some days he is more cooperative about clean up than others, though!

    Hope the next several weeks dont drive you too crazy. We have all had soooo much time together this year so I can see why you are ready for them to go back to school! Christmas break is different this year as there is no novelty to everyone being home together!!!


    1. My husband is not messy at all either! He really never leaves anything much lying around at all and is generally very neat and tidy too. But, he is also very opposed to picking up after the kids, so if it’s not his, he usually won’t touch it. Which is fine, but then means we/I need to stay on top of making sure the kids circle back for their own crap. 🙂


  2. I just read the Lazy Genius, and it gave me a lot of ideas for ways to keep the house tidy. Being around the house so much with EVERYONE home does make it challenging!


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