Toys, toys, toys.
Whenever I go to visit friends and family with kids, I am able to reassure myself that we don't have the world's largest toy mountain, that there are children who have as many and..........more! However, when I live beneath the bottom of it and birthdays and Christmas loom I once again find myself drowning.
As the boys get older, the toys get smaller, more indistinguishable, wrapped in more plastic when they arrive as gifts and generally require a PhD not only to open the fecker, but to put it together, install the intricate lithium size AAAAAAA batteries which, despite being round, are "assuredly" going to fit into the square hole! This is all before they have even taken them to pieces, in Master Beehive the younger's case, to find out how they work - then there are even more unrecognisable bits lying undiscovered to the naked eye, only to be found embedded in one's left heel when trying desperately to tip toe, without waking anyone, to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
All the Beehives, despite wonderful imaginations so they CAN play for hours when the mood takes, have an apptitude for starting one game and moving to the next like Tuesday nights at Speed dating! This means there is a trail of toys in their wake that I fall over and where pieces eventually get lost. I seem to spend my life searching for bits of a puzzle that one or other child wants to do, or fishing legos out of the U-bend or pirate pieces from the food mixer.
This morning I have already searched for a piece of a jigsaw to no avail, a story book on CD (I asked Master Beehive the younger to put this away the other day for his sister, admittedly he is as sick of Charlie and Ebola as I am, hence it can no longer be found anywhere), a doll and ALL her clothes - what a hussey! picked up all the superheros for the second time today, put away a plethora of building blocks after following a trail that started in LMB's bedroom and ended up in my office and removed Barbie from the rather X rated clinch of Action Man!
A few years ago, I decided to keep an "odd sock" box where all the lonely ones go for time out until they can be partnered up again (mind you, 'tis incredible how many of them remain lonely - but that's another tale!), now I am debating an odds and sods toy box, where all the bizarrely shaped pieces of toy that are left lying around, the odd puzzle pieces, the one doll shoe etc remain until claimed. This sounds great in theory, but I envisage ending up with my own division of UPS in boxes of unclaimed sad toy parts.
So I will just continue to trail around after the Beehives, referring to my book of "How To Identify The Crap Kids Have" to know where pieces go, putting things back in the right box, on the right shelf or doll.