I just spent an hour cleaning Saskia's room; most of that time was used to organize her desk. I separated beads from stickers, put the ink pads and markers out of her younger siblings' reach and threw out a million snippets of paper collected from previous cutting sprees.
I sort through Saskia's creative messes carefully. I discover drawings I've never seen filed away in drawers, and notebooks with the sweetest things documented: a list of what we had for Thanksgiving dinner; poems about animals; journaling about her day (I got up at 6:38 this morning. I read On the Banks of Plum Creek and did crafts.)
What strikes me is that for the last couple of years, the things she makes hold value for her whether or not her parents see them. Everything Ariana makes is shown to Pete or me so that we can exclaim over it. All of Leif's projects are gifted to us or Scotch-taped to his bedroom wall. Stumbling upon Saskia's projects that she feels no need to show us is bittersweet.
As it is now, Saskia is pleased when she comes home to a freshly organized desk. But I'm acutely aware that the day will come that she doesn't want me to touch her things. We've currently designated one desk drawer as private. (We discovered at Christmas that all those mornings crafting in the wee hours, she was churning out stocking stuffers and stashing them in the drawer. Six for each of us, and seven for Ariana.)
But that pocket of privacy is going to keep on growing.
And so I find nothing tedious about tidying my seven-year-old's room, and leaving the kitchen floor unswept to vacuum glitter off of the bedroom rug seemed a perfectly reasonable choice this stormy Monday morning.