In response to the above all I can say right now is "not"! Whereas my house was once upon a time a pleasant place where I drew happiness, it is now a cluttered mess from which I draw frustration on a regular basis thanks to my daughter who has followed very closely in her father's footsteps when it comes to organization and neatness.
There has got to be nothing harder in the world for an anally retentive picky perfectionist red-headed Virgo to deal with than living with a devil-may-care lackadaisical multi-colored hair Gemini who seems to think that the floor is a fine place to put just about everything including her flute, dishes, MP3 player, whatever book she might have been reading, etc! It baffles my mind to see the things that Amanda has left on the floor.
Whereas the most commonly used phrase out of my mouth at work is "American base to car ____"; at home it is definitely "pick that up!". The ambulances and chaircar vans can obviously hear me as they respond back to me on the radio but I am apparently speaking at a decibel that cannot be heard by 14-year old ears for whatever it is that I have just requested Amanda to pick up off the floor is generally still lying there when I walk back into the room and may even be joined by another item.
I hate to say it but I think I am just about to raise the white flag where her room is concerned as the last time I was in there it was pretty scary. I made the mistake of entering the cave that is her habitat to try to locate dirty laundry and left in total confusion as to what was clean and what wasn't in the ankle deep pile that was on her floor. As I looked around at the total chaos and confusion I now understood completely why it was that she never seemed to be able to find anything. Heck - I doubt that Stanley could even find Dr. Livingstone in that room of hers!
The sad thing is, the mess in her room has been spilling over into the rest of the house and I just can't keep up with it anymore. The floor in the computer room is currently home to her umbrella, guitar, a pair of sunglasses, two USB cords for the computer, the latest issue of Blender magazine, as well as other assorted goodies. Last check of the living room produced five socks, innumerable drawing papers & pencils, a purse with stuff falling out of it, her practice flute, and several Gamecube games. I hate to even think of looking under the couch!
With the exception of my own room, there is not a single room in this house that doesn't have at least one pair of her shoes taking up space - which is another mystery as the kid seems to wear only her one pair of black Vans on a daily basis. What is the need for all of these other shoes and why are they all over the house? Come to think of it, where did they come from? Did we have a visit from the Grimm Brothers' elves from The Elves and The Shoemaker and, if so, why aren't the shoes lined up neatly in a row like they are in the story??
Next time the elves stop by I hope they'll be of the housecleaning variety as I just don't have the energy to spend the time fighting back the clutter only to have it once again advance through the house like some sort of out-of-control fungus as it takes over every available nook and cranny in its relentless pursuit to claim the entire house.
But what's a mother to do? You can't punish your kids anymore else they'll go running to the authorities and even the threat of sending her back to Kentucky is wearing thin due to that not being able to hear me thing she has going. Is there an answer? Somebody? Anybody? Help me!!!