Monday, February 09, 2009

Packrat!

Caroline has some SERIOUS packrat tendencies. I've always suspected it over the years as she wanted to keep every little toy, stuffed animal, etc that she was given and would always be sad about outgrowing some of her clothes or shoes. But now, she's taken it to a new level. She got a 365 day calendar from my MIL for Christmas that has a cat for every day of the year. Well, most people, I would guess, would throw away each day after it ripping it off. Not Caroline! No siree, Bob! She wants to keep ALL of them. The first few times I noticed a pile of them in her room, I'd just pick them up and put them in her trash can. Well, then they would always miraculously reappear. Finally, I started taking them and throwing them away in the trashcan in my bathroom since it sits up off the floor behind a door.

I also attempted to throw away a packaging insert that came with a sheet protector that my MIL had given to use on Bryce's bed during potty training. For some reason, Caroline took a liking to the picture of the bunny on it and did NOT want me to throw it away. A few trash can retreivals later, I got smart and disposed of it in my hidden trash can.

I have to be careful what I throw away in my kitchen too. Yesterday, after finishing my grocery shopping, I threw away my VERY long grocery receipt and useless coupons. They were just sitting on top of the trash in the can and I didn't think anything of it as the lid closed. But about a half hour later, Caroline went over to throw something away and spied the list and coupons and dug them out. I was in the middle of something at the time and didn't get to find out what she was doing with them, but she said she "needed them."

So when I had a free moment, I asked her why she needed them and she said, "I need it for my patients." HUH? Well, the grocery receipt was a bit too much for me and I went up and retreived it and put it back in the trash.

I guess to Caroline it really is true that one man's trash is another man's treasure, but this is MY house and I cannot stand the way she has to save everything. I've had my own packrat issues over the years and remember not wanting to throw some things away as a kid but I don't think I was digging grocery receipts out of the trash.

But, I think that a good bit of Caroline's packrat tendencies are due to her intense imagination in that she can come up with a good use for everything. She writes all over any little piece of paper she finds and makes it "hers." I recently gave her an empty papertowel roll to show her that anything that can fit in the roll is too small to give to Piper and she has since turned it into some piece of artwork complete with lip gloss all around it.

She's also famous for loading all kinds of backpacks, bags, and such up with the most random items and carting them around the house and leaving them wherever her imagination leads her. This drives me absolutely crazy since I want all the pieces to all the toys to stay in their desginated location.

But for now, I've resigned myself to my 5 year old packrat and when she's not around I take it upon myself to weed out her "treasures." The good thing, for the most part, is that if it's out of sight, it's out of mind so once I rid the house of one of her junky items, she usually forgets about it. (Let's be real, who remembers a trashed grocery list when it's gone?) Her room just drives me crazy though since it's such a mish mosh of little items that just scream for organization. But Caroline has her own brand of organization and even if I do spend some time putting things right, it's no time before she's undone it all. (She loves to pull her clothes out of the drawer and stuff them back in - why do we bother to fold them??)

My quirky girl......although this trait drives me crazy, her imagination is one of the things I love about her, so I'll take the good with the not so bad.

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