There is only one thing harder than getting me to clean up, and that is getting my kids to do it. It is the worst kind of weakness to pass on because it means we are all lazy bones living in a disaster zone and I am a hypocrite whenever I nag or preach on the topic. I guess to be fair, if I want them to do it, I need to show them that I can do it, too. And the ultimate accomplishment would be to make them think we're all having fun (for I am too old to be fooled.)
So I thought about it some more and I do actually have a system for cleaning up the toys. It even works when we actually do it. Above, you are looking at the Magic Princess Cleanup Bin. I picked it up for 49 cents at UNIQUE, the most awesome thrift store ever.It's a fairly simple plan. It just breaks the cleanup into two steps. Two totally manageable steps. The Magic Princess Cleanup Bin is stored flat in the toy cupboard and only brought out for cleaning up. We place it in the middle of the room and fill it with everything off the floor. Then we pick it up, or drag it as the case may be, over to the wall where the toys are stored. We open or pull out all the bins/containers and take turns reaching in, pulling something out, and putting it away. Voila, the room is clean.
Don't tell the girls, but I know it's not really about the bin. It's about breaking an overwhelming job into smaller, achievable tasks. And it's about doing it together. No one likes to do menial work, but doing it alone is unbearable. Don't I know it. But thanks to the Magic Princess Cleanup Bin, we've made this job so easy, even a 35-year-old can do it.