On a good day, my house looks like a toddler runs it. On a bad day, it looks like Toys R Us exploded while my son threw a party with 30 of his closest toddler friends. It's so not cool.
By the time my son turned one, I had come to grips with the fact that my house was going to always have a top layer of baby things and toys. There was just no way, every night, I would put everything thing away, just to take it back out in the morning, so I kind of pushed things to the side.
As my son got older, the top layer of kid stuff grew. My big kid furniture was traded for little kid toy storage units, toy boxes and big sit to stand toys. Still, I just sort of kicked everything to the side at the end of the day.
Now that my son is three, and has a freaking army of Star Wars figures and aircraft, LEGOS big and small, and enough Hot Wheels to make a rug, I live in a Landmine field. There is no kicking things aside anymore. He has loads of little toys that aren't always easy to see.
Two days ago, I vacuumed up quite a few little toys and pecies by accident. As I found myself sifting through the vacuum to retrieve the toys, I lost my mind.
WHY AM I DOING THIS??
My, son is nearly four. He can put his own damn toys away.
He knows how. He does it at school.
It was at that moment, I summoned the Pick-Up Fairy.
In case you don't know her, allow me to introduce you:
I decided it was time to enforce the Pick-up Fairy way of life: Pick up your toys, kid, or the Pick-Up Fairy will do it for you.
Of course, this wasn't going to be easy on me or the kid. At first.
In fact, this was going to take ten times more work from my end, than the kid. At first.
I was going to have to enforce the Pick-up Fairy rules each night. Meaning, every night I would have to pick up the kid's toys AND hide them.
And who knows for how long? My kid can be a stubborn ass!
Still, I marched in the house and told the Kid all about the pick-up fairy and that now that he was a big boy, she would be checking to make sure he was taking care of his toys. I warned him that if he didn't care for his toys, and pick them up before bed, she would take his toys to kids who would take care them.
The first night, the stubborn ass laughed at the Pick-up fairy. He didn't want to help cleanup. I warned him one more time, then sent him up to bath with FTD.
I grabbed a laundry basket and threw every toy he left out. into it. Then hid the basket of toys in the basement.
Let just say, the next morning he wasn't laughing at the Pick-up fairy anymore.
He spent the day pissed all his favorite toys went missing. I reminded him that the Pick-up Fairy doesn't mess around and that he better clean up his toys before bed, or not only will she will take more, she won't give his favorite toys back.
The deal is, if he cleans up his toys before bed, and shows the Pick-up Fairy he can take care of his toys, she will give his favorite toys back.
That night, he was much more helpful with cleaning up.
The next morning, his toys reappeared. In the places they belong, to show Ollie where the Pick-up Fairy wants his toys to be at the end of the night.
We're on our fourth night of Pick-up Fairy inspections. While, he is still not stoked about helping me clean up at the end of the day, thanks to his fear of the Pick-up Fairy, he reluctantly helps.
The goal is to slowly phase out from helping him at all!
You may think I'm terrible for lying to my kid and tricking him into cleaning up his toys. Well, I'm sick of battling him over picking up his toys each night. I am not this child's maid! And if it takes a fairy Godmother to help me get the get point across, so be it!