And it's actually Spring. I wonder if I have an identical post from last year, didn't I begin then, to get the house ready for the baby?
Well this weekend it was the upstairs toy closet, having done the downstairs one last weekend. Amy is quite keen to help, as she likes the end result - a more comfortable home that's nice to live in. Probably because I walk around the house bitching about how awful it is when you can't walk from one place to another without feeling like you're going through an obstacle course. Or maybe because she likes to re-discover her toys, know where they are and have them easily extactable!
I threw out two bags of rubbish this morning, and have another waiting for the unburnable trash day. So, what did we achieve? We sorted the dolls, the Bratz and the Ponies into their own boxes, even sorted their clothes and accessories into boxes and containers within the boxes - Amy is really good at that part. Lena is not so good, she tends to swan around the room with some toy she has discovered, dangling off things and singing a little song, getting very little cleaning done.
We went through the stuffed toys box, and the girls surprised me with their willingness to part with toys they never play with. Amy even suggested putting them in a "New Zealand" pile, meaning for trademe. Expect some more Kitties Maria! It'll be my job sometime to go through the toy kitchen and clean it up for Erica. Amy and Lena got such joy out of it, I'll be happy to bring it down for her too, when she can walk. Then there's the dolls' house, which has been lost under a pile of junk for so long I don't think Grandma got to see it when she was here! After that there was a bunch of miscellaneous toys that could go in a box, but then they would never be played with, so I have them on shelves in the closet. Things like Mr Potato Head, the marbles, a radio-controlled car, wooden train set, ambulance and doctor set.
In the downstairs toy closet we now have a shelf for toys for Erica, and in the upper cupboard, shelves (actually shoe stands, but they were the cheapest shelving option I could find!) filled with the board games and card sets, and two boxes, one with puzzles, one full of Lego. There's also a box of playmobil and a box of 'outside' toys - skipping ropes, frisbees, etc. Phew! This house is gonna be SO clean when those kids grow up!
Next on my list after getting rid of the final piles of miscellaneous junk from that clean-up is ... the spare room. Again. I did a good job of it last year, the main problem is that the clear space in the centre gets full of rubbish that only goes out once a month, like cardboard boxes and piles of newspapers.
But! for now I have a plump baby to cuddle and play with. She's so happy first thing in the morning, she's sitting on her mat, grinning at me. Mum said Jo said I was in love with my baby. There's a good word in Japanese, oyabaka - 'oya' meaning parent, 'baka' meaning silly. To describe everything from excessive worry about illness to how adorable we think our own kids are (lines of videoing parents at school concerts) to the absurd things we'll do just to get a baby to smile! I'm gonna go and be an oyabaka now.