The process of going through our stuff can be agonizing. Actually, our day started out very pleasant. Everyone was getting along so well and I even commented to John that the boys were showing some real character growth in their deference to each other and learning to work together, etc. And then we started the GKS sort! Well, I guess the positive way to look at it is that it revealed that there is still much training to do! We started with the toys. I asked them if we should turn on some music to make it more fun? YES!! At first they wanted Go Fish, but then they all definitely decided they wanted to listen to Geography Songs! Really?! Well, who am I to argue with that? At least they might learn some geography while they work. :) Will is still young enough that he's just along for the ride in this toy sorting extravaganza... he mills around and enjoys wrecking havoc on all our piles! With the other two, there is a big pack rat who can't bear to part with anything and one who sees the value in cleaning out and making some money... definitely a combination for conflict. (But more and more we see that the Lord designs it this way so that we can learn to deal with conflict in a way that honors the Lord and builds the relationships in our family... before we have to face conflict with the world. So, we had lots of practice today.) John was my life saver... he came up with some rules for the big toy sort to help calm the situation. You know it is a real bummer when your brother decides he's not interested in keeping that toy anymore, but that toy actually belongs to the other brother. So, they each got a basket (a big one) that they had to fill up with things that they were ready to get rid of. Josiah got busy... it was a competition to him... and with some clever thinking he realized that he could clean out all the baby toys that we don't use any more and fill up his basket quickly without losing too many of his toys.
Every time Shepard got a look inside Josiah's basket there were many tears. So, the new rule was that they could each put anything they wanted in their basket, but at the end of the sorting they would have an opportunity to come back and reclaim favorite toys with our permission. Ahhh... at least Shepard felt some hope again and yes, we did finally get him to put a few more things in his basket. And at the end of the day, he only took back two toys!! I know it's hard for a pack rat, but I'm proud of him for overcoming it. (Now I've just got to hide all the toys we're getting rid of so that he doesn't change his mind! :))
And John, my other pack rat :) decided to start cleaning out the garage today! Yippee! He knows how much I cringe to walk through the mess every day. I really do try not to comment about it... much. But, I was so proud of all his hard work today and it means so much to me!
While John was working in the garage and the boys were cleaning out toys, I started cleaning out the clothes - with the itunes headphones and a cold bottle of Cream Soda. Yep, that's the way to do it!
Just a few more things to go through tomorrow and then I'm ready to tag. So, if you are wondering if it's worth it... YES! We'd have to go through all our clothes anyway to make room for the new sizes the boys need. And this is such great practice for them to learn how to maintain orderliness. And I love seeing empty drawers!! :)