Having been an incredibly messy child, I think I can safely say that I’ve (largely) grown out of this habit. You wouldn’t believe this if you saw my house though, there’s always stuff lying around but I’ve learnt to accept that there are more important things in the world to worry about.

I have three children, a husband, and two cats. Enough said.

It isn’t too bad really. We don’t hoard, we aren’t precious about things and I don’t consider any of us to be materialistic enough to constantly want new things.

But sadly, my children seem to have inherited my messy gene. I’m not quite sure who is the worst between the eldest two, Jude and Elsa. Elsa will sporadically take hours tidying up her room, putting everything in the right place and rearranging her collectable bits and pieces but then within a few hours; it’ll be newly trashed. And thanks to needing a particular pair of socks, everything from her underwear drawer will be strewn across the floor (this happened last week!). If I leave her room to mature naturally throughout the week then we soon reach the point where I can barely open the door. How do I overcome this? I just shut her door when she’s not around. Out of sight, out of mind. Then once a week I’ll blitz it all whilst she’s at school - hang the clothes up, make the bed and line up her books. I leave the fine detail to her but I like to give her a little helping hand sometimes.

I think as long as the rooms I frequent most often are vaguely reasonable then the rest is immaterial. I feel uncomfortable walking into a house that’s too immaculate, is that just me?

Jude. Jude, oh Jude. He attends his school for the whole week, returning home on Friday afternoons until Sunday evening. You wouldn’t believe how much mess he’s capable of making in that time! Particularly impressive is this achievement considering how little he has in his room to begin with. As people who read my blog will know, Jude loves to rip up paper. He calls them his people and will crouch by his bed, flicking the individual pieces across his eye line. It’s quite remarkable to observe and I’d love to get it on video one day for you all to see. Not so much the flicking motion but more his eyes. They almost look hypnotised by the colours and the movement crossing his eye line. 

 

Jude with his people! This was taken last summer; I can’t believe his people obsession has gone on this long...

I don’t really worry about the mess in Jude’s room so much. He is only home for a few days at a time (plus the holidays of course) so I can just sort it all out once he’s back safely in his beloved school house. 

Having said that, we do work with damage limitation in mind so I take everything potentially hazardous out of Jude’s room before I bring him home. I make sure there are no books that are particularly loved because they run the risk of falling into Jude’s shredding hands. I also take out jigsaw puzzles and Lego as he will throw them around his room. I’ve learnt from experience just HOW LONG it can take you to collate, sort and regroup four different jigsaws at once. The Lego is more about the pain element… creeping into Jude’s room in the dark and standing on one of those bad boys is just not pleasant.

So how do I feel about mess? Having gone through some of the stuff I have in my life, I really don’t care. On the whole, we are pretty tidy as a family. The living rooms, kitchen and dining room always look nice and seeing as we spend most of our time there then that’s good enough for me :) 

Read more about Alice and Jude's adventures on her blog Living with a Jude