It's official. Every once in a while, as I glance around la casa I realize that I am no longer in charge. I desperately, well, theoretically subscribe to Montessori principles that propose that children and adults should finish one task before starting another. In the Montessori teachings, the full circle of things is emphasized and children as well as adults are to pick-up one thing, as well as put it away before another task is started. So, ideally the train set gets put away before the indoor croquet set is taken out of the bag and strewn around the house. Some days, we are good at doing just that. Others, like today, bed-time becomes a struggle as we try to develop order out of chaos. I hate to be anal about it, but the children trip on their way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. I even step on little poky things of plastic and curse in a sleepy haze. Maybe I should just clear a path, part the sea of plastic, and let everyone wallow in the toys.