Thursday, June 14

The Enchanted One

There's this great song that Carole King sings called "Screaming and Yelling." It's on an old album called Really Rosie that you can download for about $10 or buy as a CD for $50.

The song is really great.  I think it should be an anthem for SAHM's everywhere.
When everybody
Screams and yells
Who calms them down?
Who rings their bells?
When everybody screams and yells
The enchanted one
That's me
When everybody screams and yells,
There's nothing to do!
There's nothing to see!
Who dreams up a place they'd like to be?
The enchanted one
That's me
It takes personality
A lot of personality
To make them see it my way
It takes personality
More personality
To turn twelve boring hours
Into a fascinating day!
That's a fact
Don't you see?
Do you know?
Can you guess
Who I simply have to be?
The enchanted one
That's me 
It's a great, up-beat song that makes me want to put on a big pink tutu and a tiara and dance.  Get that image out of your head. The point is, I'm the MOM.  It's my job to make things run smoothly.  I'm The Enchanted One.  

And so begins a new small, inconsistent and completely occasional series on this fabulous blog!

I will (occasionally and inconsistently) post things that I find to be helpful as a mother in the constant pursuit of peace in my household.  Creativity is key here.  Just as the song says, our lives can be chaotic and we are the ones who have to do what we can to create peace and harmony and a little sanity until everyone grows up enough to either move out, or take care of themselves.
For me, this is especially important because we live in a very, very small house with three small children.  

So without further rambling...

The Enchanted One's Devious Plan to Keep her Children (*gasp*) Organized!

When Jonah was still yet to be born I purchased the first of many cloth collapsible boxes to hold his things.  Over the years we started keeping his toys in them because they were easy for him to pull out and put up, and they fit almost anywhere.  

When Caroline was born I bought even more to store her clothing and diapers and the baby toys.  Them we bought a shelving system from IKEA to hold all the boxes that we were amassing.  We used the shelf as a room divider so that I wouldn't wake Jonah up when I had to come in to feed Caroline in the middle of the night.  

So, now we have Sadie (more boxes) and we no longer have a need to separate the two in the room.  In fact, what we needed was a place for them to play.  So Josh built them bunk beds and we pushed the shelves against the wall and bought a train table.  

The problem is, my children have a lot of toys.  Not an overabundance, mind you, but a lot for our small house. They also had no good way to organize them. We had boxes, so things would simply be dumped in the nearest box and shoved onto the shelf, and once every month or so I would dump every box out and sort all the toys so they could play with them again. It is obnoxious.  

So, I got an idea that I would go to Hobby Lobby (crafting Mecca) and buy something to label the boxes so that they could sort the toys when they were putting them away.  The problem is that my kids are so young that they are non-readers, for the most part.  I couldn't just write "Trains" on a box and move on.  Instead, I found these flat wooden cars and boats and trains and things (check the pictures because that's a horrible description) that I brought home and hot glued to the fabric boxes.  

Look!  Boxes!
The duck is for the baby toys (I need another one to go on the other brown box, I discovered) the trains are for the... trains... Well, it's mostly self-explanatory.  There wasn't anything suitable for the legos, so I bought a hand and wrote Lego on it, and Jonah chose a football helmet for the dress-up box.  I got a fairy for Carolines baby dolls and a yellow flower for her tea set, since there wasn't anything else appropriate for that.  I was worried that the flower would throw her off, but the kids have it pretty well figured out and she knows just where to put the tea pot without being prompted.  No prompting about the location.  Cleaning up on her own is still a challenge.  

Some of the boxes ended up at the top.  One of them has diapers for Caroline and the rest have spare sheets and blankets.  Otherwise the books are on the shelf.  I put the boxes low enough that the kids could reach them and put them up by themselves.  

The crib is still in the room because the kids like to throw a blanket over it and pretend it's a fort, otherwise the room gives them a lot more room to play and keep their toys in their own space.  And it's organized.  It's been a week and so far, the boxes are still sorted properly for the most part.  Occasionally, I have to remind Jonah to put things where they belong, not just in the nearest box, but it's actually been much smoother than I thought it would be.  


Laura said...

Nice! If Caroline knows where to put her teapot, you're doing better than we are. I may try this!

Chara said...

Wow. I just noticed how insanely disorganized the books are.