Do your kids’ rooms look like this?

Exhibit A: Friends in bed

So, in the vein of my post about how Pinterest makes me feel inadequate, I have a question: Does any any kids’ room actually look like the rooms in, say, the Pottery Barn Kids catalog? Or Pinterest, for that matter?

And, related questions: are your kids’ rooms as irredeemably messy as my girls’ is?

I would love for their room to look adorable and cozy and neat, and occasionally (like, maybe once every other month?) I go in there and do a real number on the place. And it’s never actually dirty. It’s not total bedlam (ha ha, get it?) either. But with two five-year-olds and all of their five-year-old quirks and possessions, maintaining lasting, picturesque neatness is just not a realistic possibility.

At any given time, if you walked into Elsa and Clio’s room, you would see:

1. Unmade or only partially made beds. I try to at least pull up the covers in the morning if I’ve got time, but lately that’s been difficult because (see exhibit A, above) the girls are going through this thing where they put TEN THOUSAND “friends” in their beds (so that they themselves end up sleeping in, like, a six inch-wide space) and insist that they stay there all the time. Clio, in particular, gets really bent out of shape if anyone moves them. Sigh.

2. Library books on the floor / under the beds. I think it’s the cellophane dust covers. They’re just so….slidey. The girls bring books onto their beds to read at “quiet time” and they inevitably end up scattered about like so many, er, library books on the floor.

2a. Other books on the floor / under the beds. But it’s great that they like reading so much, right?

Exhibit B: Dresser Top

3. Dresser drawers not fully closed, and frequently with bits of clothing peeking out. (And if you opened the drawers, you’d find semi-chaos as well) I hate this, but it’s mostly my fault, really. We have all the girls’ clothes in one dresser, and this is getting more difficult as their clothes get bigger, and as they have more things  they each think of as their own, as opposed to wearing the same clothes interchangeably. They also just have too damned many clothes (we get lots of hand-me-downs) and are sort of between sizes at the moment. AND it doesn’t help that when they pick out their own clothes, they completely unfold everything and toss it about, Yoda-like. (Too nerdy and obscure a reference? I’ll take my chances.)

4. Crap all over the top of the dresser. (Exibit B). Somehow the dresser has become a dumping ground for crap. All the little stuff that the girls “collect,” the scraps of paper and artwork / toys / rocks / shells / etc. they are attached to at any given moment, their barrettes and elastics, random toiletry items, books, clothes that won’t fit into the jammed dresser drawers, etc. It’s a free-for-all.

Exhibit C: "Fort"

5. Sacred spaces. (See Exhibit C. Note books on floor, semi-unmade bed, and small green bowl of pink Styrofoam peanuts, which used to live on the dresser). Does this look like a fort to you? Not to me either. But it is. These things are forever getting built, and it doesn’t seem worth the trouble to dismantle them, given how upset it makes the girls. I mean, it’s not like the Queen is coming over or anything, right? And even if she did (if she ever returns my calls), she’d most likely stay downstairs. (We’d bring out the good china, of course.)

Indeed, I suppose it doesn’t really matter. The neatnik in me — who, although he has become far quieter ever since I had children, does still exist — just shudders a bit now and then.


DOUBLE TIME, my memoir of parenting twins and battling depression (among other things) is now available for pre-order!

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Article Posted 5 years Ago

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