Did you know that's it's a scientific fact that children cannot see the messes that they make? It's true! I swear! They have this innate ability to drag out everything that they own, and step over it for DAYS until either 1)their mother puts it away, 2) their mother practically kills herself tripping over it, or C) their father trips over it and chucks it into their rooms, which are also a mess. There is good news and bad news about this scientific theory of selective sight.
The good news is that almost all little girls will eventually grow out of it, and grow up to be quite productive members of society, contributing quite nicely to their households and the world. The bad news? Little boys NEVER grow out of it and our plagued by this ailment for their ENTIRE lives!
Know how I know this? Because I live with a wonderful man who is good to me, a wonderful father, does the laundry, cooks more meals than I do, participates fully in our lives together. . .and who is absolutely absent of any housekeeping skills whatsoever. And believe me, I have tested this theory many, many, many times.
We will be about to have company over and I will be frantically trying to pick things up and he will look around and say, "Honey, the house looks fine!" And um, excuse me, but I wouldn't let my best friend in my house the way it was. I have even gone so far as to wait him out on the housecleaning. Do you remember that episode of Ray Romano's sitcom where he and his wife Debra are fighting over who is going to put the suitcase away? It sat there for days, weeks, and neither of them was budging. I thought that Jason and I were reliving this episode in real life. Turns out, only I was reliving it. He was just going through life as happy as a clam in a mold and dust-infested house. I, on the other hand, was going CRAZY! When I finally shouted to the rooftops that I caved. . .he was like, "what?"
So what is the answer to the infernal question of how to get your family to pick up after themselves? I'm afraid that we will never know because all the scientist assigned to this case are men, and they don't think there's a problem.