When you were a child and a teenager, how tidy was your bedroom?
Were you the sort of person whose toys were scattered all over the floor and were your freshly-ironed clothes dumped in a heap in the corner of the room?
Or perhaps your room was spotless with all toys packed away neatly and tidily in the toy box and all clean washing placed straight in the wardrobe ready for when you needed it?
I know and admit that I was in the middle of these two options.
Sometimes it would look like the local tip before I’d go into tidy-up mode and do something about it before environmental health got a sniff of my health hazard bedroom.
The worrying thing is I fear my seven-year-old daughter Caitlin may be taking after her dad.
Late at night when it is dark outside and I am yawning uncontrollably, I’ll make my way to my bedroom but before I get there I’ll walk into my daughter’s room to check on them.
Often I’ll step on a squeaky toy and the noise will bounce off every wall and echo throughout our sleeping house.
Then I’ll stub my toe on the toy box left in the middle of the room instead of being tucked away in the corner or I’ll trip over Dream House Barbie and decapitate her in the process like I’m in the middle of a horror movie.
But just like when I was young, it’s an organised mess, as she still seems to know where everything is.
But the battle continues and order is imposed.
As a child, you think your parent is nagging you to tidy your room but as a parent you are well aware that teaching them to clean up after themselves, especially in the room of the house that is theirs, adds to their bank of skills they’ll need as they grow up.
But of course this means, as their dad, I need to set an example.
It is important I take pride in my home.
I keep things in order and have a positive attitude towards daily tasks.
Even when I’m looking at a huge pile of plates, cups and cutlery that needs washing up, I need to do it with a smile.
Actually, I don’t mind washing up. It’s the drying up that bores me to tears.
But when it comes to bedrooms we all try to keep them tidy and Caitlin is aware that any toys that aren’t tidied away after being played with risk getting put up in the dark, dusty and cold attic.
Although, it’s becoming less of an attic and more of a toy graveyard these days.