The seasons here in southern Idaho are definitely very different from anything we are used to, and we have lived all over the country as well as in Korea, so that's saying something. Normally by September we would be ripping up our garden and preparing it for winter, but here a lot of our plants were just starting to come to life in September! We waited until what felt like the last possible moment to pull everything up, plant our cover crop and put it all to rest for winter (Well, minus our dyeing plants. The honeybees are still visiting them so we thought we would leave them a bit longer). That happened to be the last weekend of October. We spent a whole day outside working and playing as a family. The children happily taking full responsibility for their own gardens and then even helping Kevin and I with our bigger family gardens. The loved going around and harvesting anything they could, including some funny looking carrots that were hidden by the tomato plants. These are some of my favorite times. All three of them really seem to flourish when we labor together. Hard work makes our family stronger (and bed time so much easier!).
I know I mentioned using The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up a few months back when I posted the children's bedroom tour, but I can't remember now if I have since mentioned my failure in implementing the Konmari method in the rest of the house. I keep meaning to but I just can't seem to find a whole day to dedicate to it (you know, with all my free time). I have, at least, started in their playroom and kept it off limits for a couple of months as I try to sort though everything in there so that's something, but still nowhere near enough. In the meantime the children's bedroom is becoming messier and messier because they end up bringing things from other areas of the house into their room. Now I see why Marie Kondo said you can't just do a room at a time.
Kevin actually implemented his own decluttering/tidying solution for the children that he named "Crabmari". This involves him pretending to be a crab and walking into the children's room with an empty box (after giving them a warning to prepare) and filling it up with everything he finds out of place. Then the box disappears (he puts in the garage to go through later). Little L gets a kick out of being "mini-Crabmari" and helping Daddy fill the box.
When Kevin first told me about this I thought the children would flip out over their things being thrown in a box, but the funny thing is that they welcome it. They actually get to the point that they ask for Crabmari to come and get rid of their things. You should see the relief in their faces when he does and the clutter is gone. It makes me realize that as much as I thought I downsized their belongings, they really need even less. They get so overwhelmed by having too many possessions and really need to live even simpler - as do Kevin and I. I guess I had better try harder to find a day to finish decluttering and tidying the rest of the house so we can all feel as relieved as the children do - all the time.