I have two common problems in our house when it comes to cleaning the bedrooms. One, too often a clean room means a messy underbed. And, two, I have kids who love to hoard things. One child, in particular, loves to keep just about everything. From newspaper clippings to rocks to homework he did a year ago, he just "has to have them and can't throw them away." After struggling to know how to get rid of the mess, I came up with a solution that works great for us and solves both problems.
Instantly, we went from this....
in 10 minutes or less.
While shopping after Christmas sales, I saw the long tupperware bins used for storing wrapping paper. I could tell they would fit perfectly under the bed. When I got home, I announced that each child would now have their own treasure box. Anything could go in it (with the exception of food). But, if it overflowed, they had to get rid of something so the lid could shut. Their treasure box was the only thing allowed under their bed. Any time I looked under the bed and saw anything else, it would be thrown away, because after all, if it was a "treasure", it should be in their box.
After explaining the rules, I let them all run to their bedrooms and fill their new treasure chest by cleaning up under their bed. They were so excited and quickly got to work. In minutes, they had sorted through all their things, picked out their most important treasures, put the clothes in the dirty clothes bin and ditched the rest. Since then, all I have to see under the bed is a red bin. I don't know what's in it. I don't really care. They're happy because they now get to keep their treasures, no questions asked. And I'm happy because the clutter's gone. Problem Solved!