Looks like the Monkey has picked up the Squirrel Nutkin gene from both parents. Though our packrat tendencies go much more toward hoarding stuff than cleaning out the nest, so he's a bit of an aberration. The last two days he's been all about cleaning and reorganizing. It's freakish, but I certainly won't complain. This unholy urge probably started with his helping Mr. Stang clean out the garage the last few weeks. Yesterday he was on a mission to clean out my closet. You can see floor (except for the huge pile of assorted shoes, etc. in one little corner). Last night he announced his intention to reorganize the bathroom cupboards by moving the stash of spare soap to make room for the T.P. Sure thing - as soon as I jumped in the shower this morning he started working under the sink. Now Mr. Stang calls to tell me the boy has decided the cookbook shelves in our dining room need cleaning. He's right - they're covered in dust. Yesterday, he helped Daddy unload a ton of 40 lb bags of wood pellets into the newly clean garage. OK - it was just two bags, and he didn't get more than 20 feet before having to drag them... but still - he only weighs 45 lbs himself!!!
Did I ever mention how I rewarded him for potty training? He was upset we wouldn't let him clean the toilets with the cool little disposable brush thingie that turns the water blue. I told him only people who *use* the toilet get to clean them. It worked, more so than getting to wear big kid underpants. He loves to mop. And vacuum. And wash windows (using non-toxic squirky stuff). And dust. And pull weeds. And rake leaves. I tell you, it's freakish. I dread the day somebody will tell him these things are actually considered by the vast majority of the population to be "work" and not "fun". But then, we never use the word "chore" in our house, either.
He was very proud of himself when he graduated from being able to fold kitchen towels/ napkins to bath towels, and gets positively irate if you don't let him dump the fabric cleaner and detergent in the washing machine before pushing the buttons (bleach, of course is off limits). I'm not entirely convinced that the Fey Folk didn't swap him out with a changeling. But I don't care. I'm keeping him.
My grandmother would find this behavior very odd. She died one year ago tomorow at the age of 90. She lived next door when we were growing up, and would come over almost every day after school (we were latchkey kids), tsk tsk tsk and say "this house is atrocious! Why won't you clean it up for your mother ??"
She would be amazed at how a housework-loving child could ever be spawned from my womb, get this ironic little smile on her face and sadly shake her head - awed by the vagaries of the universe.
I'm missing her very much today.