Sunday, October 19, 2008


Yesterday was our annual "It's All About Chuck" day. This is a day in October that we set aside to clean the playroom. We started this tradition about ten years ago. Abby was four years old; Nathalie was two. Sam and I were tired of the mess in the playroom, which we have come to affectionately call, the "WrecK" room.

We knew that Christmas was coming. A time when my (at the time) unmarried and childless siblings, loved to lavish my children with toys. I was dreading the mess and it was only October. We decided we were going to clean the playroom and anything broken or missing pieces would be thrown away. Anything we knew they really didn't play with would either be set aside to be donated or thrown away, depending on its condition.

We had the girls helping us and at one point Sam lifted a toy from the heap that hadn't been played with in months because it was missing pieces. Sam questioned as to where it should go and I (without thinking) replied, "Chuck it." As Sam placed the item in a garbage bag, the girls began to wail. Thinking quickly I explained that this particular bag was not going to the dump. It was going to a special little boy named "Chuck". His family was very poor and wouldn't he have fun with these things? Sam (sometimes the man is really on the ball), grabbed a marker and wrote "Chuck" on the bag. The girls bought it and "It's All About Chuck" day was born.

So yesterday we cleaned the playroom. The girls being older now, know where the stuff is going. But we do still have a box labeled "Chuck" and any items they are tired of and are still in good condition, go in it and get brought to the Good Will store.

I was amazed only three bags of garbage and one box for Chuck. Nearly all of the puzzles had to be tossed as they were missing pieces. But the girls have been taking better care of their board games and only two of them were missing too many pieces to be playable. We culled through some of the books and have eliminated the sets of encyclopedias with copyright dates in the 1950's. While they are beautiful books, they are simply too outdated and we don't have the space.

The "WrecK" room is clean and organized again. At least until Christmas...
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