The boys room was beyond messy. It was approaching a state of Disaster. I didn't take a "before" picture because I feared someone may alert CPS...
Actually, their room had been worse - much worse. Last March, I removed ALL toys from their room. At first, they thought it was a joke.. then reality set in. you know what? All of those toys are STILL in the basement. I'm thinking they REALLY have too much shit if I can take away that much and they hardly skip a beat.
I did leave their books (can you blame me?), which were the source of much of the mess. When Andy's teacher retired, she gave away her books. Andy came home with literally hundreds of books! Mostly "Human Body" and science topics. go figure! But the books and a couple of LEGO sets that they did earn had pretty much exploded all over the room!
So after days and days of asking, begging then threatening them, I decided it was time for a new tactic. I took a page from Super Nanny's book (Figuratively - good book. don't want to rip it!). She had a couple of little girls dress up as "busy bees" to make cleaning fun... now, my boys are older, and well... boys. SO we went with Superheros!
Their mission - should they chose to accept it (and really, they had no choice) was to get their room from "super-messy" to "super-clean" and to do it "super-fast".
They picked out costumes, got dressed and went to work. They picked up and made their beds. I rearranged the furniture and swept the floor (my Goodness the dirt!). They still have a mountain of laundry to put away, and we need more bookshelves... but those are tasks for another day...
As for "toy pergatory" and the disaster that is supposed to be our family room.... I'm going to thin the toys while the big guys are camping. I hate to chose what to get rid of behind their back, but Andy personifies his toys so much (no more "Toy Story" for him!) that he finds it nearly impossible to part with anything. SInce there is SO much.. He'll likely not notice what was thinned out.