Pam Young Make it Fun
November 1, 2013
Chances are that if your kids are in a mess it’s because you’re in one too. But there’s hope.
Your children can get organized when you make it fun. What will make the difference? Magic! But in order to put magic into the mix, you’ll need to call upon your children’s imagination. Think of the power you have around Christmastime with Santa and his elves lurking around and checkin’ his list. Kids’ imaginations run as smoothly as Michelle Kwan behind a Zamboni. They’re natural imaginers! And that’s where the House Fairy comes in!
Who’s the House Fairy? Well here’s the scoop. When my sister and I decided to get organized, it was June 16, 1977 and we agreed to get organized first and then help our six kids who, at the time, ranged in age from two to twelve. We knew sooner or later we needed to deal with their disorder, but we weren’t sure how we were going to do that. Since Peggy and I got organized in the summer, it was the perfect time to let the kids play and enjoy their summer vacation, knowing that when school started, three of the six would be in school and back into a routine, while the remaining three (two BOPs Born Organized People) would be easier to handle. Joanna, my BOP daughter was washing her toys when she was two. When she was eight, someone asked her if she’d like a doll house for Christmas and she replied, “Oh, I don’t think so, it’d be just one more thing to keep clean.”
One day, well into autumn, my daughter Peggy Ann came home from second grade announcing that at school the Desk Fairy came to call and she got a surprise.
“A surprise? For what?”
“A surprise for keeping my desk neat.”
“Really? And yours was neat?” (Peggy was one of my messiest offspring.)
“Yes, because Teacher says we never know when the Desk Fairy will come, so we have to keep our desks neat ALL THE TIME! She says the Desk Fairy checks our desks when we’re out playing at recess and if they’re neat we get a surprise.”
This fantastic idea got my crazy brain to cooking and within a week, I was decked out in a crazy wig, a dress with a twirly skirt in four layers of iridescent pink, green, purple, and orange, spiked heels, and a wand made from the vacuum cleaner hose with an aluminum foil covered tennis ball tucked in the end. Armed with three gifts for surprises, I headed over to my sister’s house to make the first House Fairy inspection call.
I rang the doorbell and Jeff, one of my nephews, answered the door.
“Hi, I’m the House Fairy and I’m here to check your room.” He recognized me and seemed confused by my attire and spiel. My sister stood right behind him with a mixture of delight and confusion.
“I’m the House Fairy and I have three surprises for the children if their rooms are neat and clean,” I repeated. By then, my other niece and nephew, Chris and Ally, were in the doorway making a quartet of gawkers.
On that first visit, Chris (my sister’s BOP) got his surprise, but Ally and Jeff did not.
After that fateful day, my sister and I took turns showing up at each other’s houses in outrageous costumes and our children began cleaning up their acts. The House Fairy works!
News Flash! The House Fairy has come alive thanks to the Internet! When your kids watch the House Fairy, I promise they’ll WANT to start cleaning up. See for yourself. www.housefairy.org.