Can't get your teens to clean their rooms? I did!

(From my blog: Writing Through Rose Colored Glasses

There is nothing quite like knowing that someone else will be inside of your room all night - hanging their clothes in your closet, sleeping in your sheets, and wandering around to look at all the things you've collected - well, there's nothing quite like that impending event to motivate a very thorough cleaning.

My teenagers are no exception.

For weeks I asked them nicely to clean their rooms. I knew we'd be having company over the holidays and wanted one less thing on the chore list. And being the thoughtful kids they are, they made several half-attempts at getting the job done. To stop the nagging, they'd empty the overflowing trash can from time to time, shove a few layers of clothes into a bigger pile not visible from the doorway - nice little things like that.

But this week the rubber hit the road. Our overnight guests were scheduled to arrive on Sunday night, and so it was that I discovered an added benefit to sharing an evening with dear friends from far away - I also gained two very clean and tidy upstairs bedrooms. Five trashbags full of accumulated who-knows-what were hauled down the stairs, a mountain of clothes ready for a Goodwill donation appeared in the laundry room, and several slightly used and long-forgotten toys became instant treasures for my youngest as his two older siblings parted with old treasures.

Oh, and the best part? It no longer smells like a locker room upstairs.

I'm thinking of inviting overnight guests once a month - it's cheaper than a cleaning lady and far more effective.

Views: 10

Comment by Adelita on December 30, 2008 at 9:58am
You are my new hero!
Comment by Barelas Babe on December 30, 2008 at 10:27am
Mine too! Thanks for the great idea! Now, who to invite first...
Comment by mombat on December 30, 2008 at 12:43pm
Nicely done!
We have the " broom of doom" at our house; everything is swept into a large pile in the offending room and the kids are given a time limit to deal with it. Then what they haven't dealt with gets tossed or donated.
Comment by Lisa Abeyta on December 30, 2008 at 4:26pm
Broom of Doom. I love it! :)
Comment by cathyray on December 30, 2008 at 5:34pm
wish I had known about the Broom o Doom when my son was younger. My brother & I developed a theory that a person should throw a big party once a year so that they would really clean the house & fix all those put off chores.
I should talk! My art room was a true heap until the same brother & his wife were going to stay with us over Thanksgiving. I worked & worked cleaning that room out.


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