I like to get messy too

Anna has been hiding her dirty laundry.

Every morning lately she’s been melting down when it comes time to get dressed for school. “Mom, I can’t find any pants!” she yells, like I’m keeping them from her. Usually she finds some, never mind that they are too short and seasonally inappropriate – or on the third day of wear. The important thing is that she learns to fend for herself, right?

In the evening, while I’m watching reruns and folding laundry, everyone ends up with a stack of clean clothes. Except Anna. Without fail, her pile will have just a pair of socks and a t-shirt while everybody else’s clothes tower over me. Against my better judgment, I checked her closet last week – maybe she shoved her dirty things in there. But no, the closet was relatively clean. I should have worried, but I didn’t.

Anna has always been hopelessly, even hilariously, disorganized. When she was a toddler, she would fill every available tote bag with her toys and hang them all on her toy stroller, carting it all over the house. We used to call her the bag lady. Last winter, one of my new year’s resolutions was to help Anna learn to organize her toys. I bought her a bunch of cute little colorful bins, and made chalkboard labels for each one. She had so much fun labeling and organizing her toys. It worked great for about two weeks, and then we promptly forgot all about organizing. Honestly, I’m happy when the toys make it into any bin at all. I don’t mind if she makes a mess when she’s playing.

So this morning, I was trying to find a few more items to fill up my laundry basket. I wandered into her room, thinking that I would grab her pajamas from the floor. Then I noticed a bin on the floor by the window. It had a pair of dirty leggings in it, along with some doll clothes. So, I grabbed the leggings and peeked in another bin. It looked like it was full of trash. I pushed the trash aside and underneath I found a bunch of dirty nightgowns. Then I turned and noticed a gift bag, full of dirty t-shirts and even a piece of my jewelry!

Needless to say, I am really glad that I checked her bins. God only knows where all of her toys are. And I was just about to buy her some new pants.