Sometimes I'd like to ask God why He allows poverty, famine and injustice when He could do something about it. But I'm afraid God might ask me the same question.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

So I've said before that my daily mood seems to be 98% based on the weather.  Thankfully for all who know and love me we have had some warmer days around here lately.  Warm enough actually to get out and do some work around the house.  We got the kids all involved in washing our cars this weekend.

 I regrettably couldn't help because: 
     A. I had to take pictures to document the precious milestone of a moment
     B. It still isn't warm enough for my coldblooded self to get near the back spray 
           of a 5 year old holding a hose
     C. I didn't want to steal their joy
     D. I can be a lazy bones when I wanna be
 Anyway the kiddos were way jazzed about wielding a hose and washing the cars...which got me to thinkin' .   We need to put these munchkins to work more often. The one thing we have going for us is our manpower numbers. 

  They all have Saturday morning chores which take them all of about 15 minutes... which I think is pretty ok, especially for the youngest of the brood.  And they pretty much clean up after themselves when asked.  BUT dinner time around here is N.U.T.S.O!  We do eat dinner together as a family at least 6 but usually 7 nights a week, which always consists of me being in the kitchen for a while preparing.  Then my super cute hubby does the dishes.  Fair and square.

But that dinner time hour is obscene around here so we are thinking we need to give each of the kiddos a chore to go along with dinner time.  Just one simple 5-10 minute task to ease the burden but most of all occupy them while moms and pops are getting dinner ON the table or cleaned OFF the table.    They know full well to take advantage of the 'rents when they are preoccupied.  Plus 6 kids = tons of messes that they could surely participate in, right? 
The problem is we are having trouble thinking of things that will actually be helpful.
 Last thing I need while I am trying to get dinner on is 5 little ones in the kitchen asking me to help them reach something, open something, or just making it more chaotic in general.  

couldn't resist my baby's saggy bottom look :) 

Please oh please give me your advice and tips.  I don't want to screw these guys up like I screwed this kid up.
I'm telling you.. he is an awesome kid, never gives us any trouble, is respectful and does well in school..but he is a TOTAL slob.  My apologies to his future wife, He is the most loyal and driven person I have ever known, but oh how I wish I would have laid out a few more household chores as part of his everyday routine. 
his room on a good day :(
 PLEASE HELP! I would love a few chore suggestions for the 3-8 year old crew!  I am craving a more simplified and structured home...


Mollie B said...

HIs room really doesn't look all that bad. When Will was that age we could never remember if he had carpet or hardwood floors.

Jenny said...

I don't have any ideas, but I can't wait to see what others have to say. Dinner time chaos exists over here too and it can be CRAZY!!!

LOVE the pics of the kids "working" outside. And lucky for you (and your kids) it looks like we have some really great weather coming up!!! CAN"T wait!!!

Kristi said...

I just filled up our sand table with a mix of dried beans and rice and with the warm weather this week have let the kids have a "tea party" while I'm getting dinner fixed.
They do assist in setting the table though. I get out plates, utensils and napkins and they take them from the counter to the table before we eat. AND they are responsible for going to the bathroom and washing hands before we sit down. Then everyone takes their plate to the sink and we rotate weeks on who finishes clearing the table (salad dressings, serving bowls, trivets), who wipes the table, and who wipes the chairs down.
And like you, I married a wonderful man who takes care of the rest of the dishes.
Some days it seems like a fight to get them to do their chores, but one day we had a friend visiting and Kylie told her that she needed to take her snack plate to the sink. :)

Nancy said...

Just some little things we have tried along the way with our larger brood. Some have worked better than others depending on age and personality. I think this list is good for kiddos age 3-9ish. Some are more geared for kiddos on the older end. We usually rotate chores every 6 months or so, or when someone gets too bored, or "ages out" of a chore, or when it's just not working. It's always in flux, but that's good because to me half the reason we do chores is to train our children how to clean up in a variety of things.

---collecting/delivering dirty laundry to laundry room.
---sorting dirty laundry
---dog poop collection & disposal (not a favorite but necessary)
---unloading dishwasher
---put away silverware from dishwasher
---collect toys and put them away in a basket
---emptying wast baskets into large bag
---fold towels/napkins/wash cloths...
---dusting (put socks on their hands)
---feet a pet/clean water
---put away folded/sorted laundry to the correct room
---clear/wipe down dinner table

Heather Thompson said...

I knew I had to visit the comments to get ideas- thanks for the advice request;) we have the SAME problem! I'll be back to see what additional suggestions you get:D

Myra said...

hey girl, we also sit down together most night, and MOSTLY my older littles are responsible for pouring drinks for the children and putting them on the table, the youngest put napkins at everyones plate - after dinner in theory everyones suppose to bring their plate to the sink and clean it off in the trash if needed the smallest are suppose to help me wipe off the table and sweep while the oldest load the dishwasher. My husband isn't home 3nights a week so I count on their help...the older three also unload the dishwasher, feed the pets and help with the trash inconsistently. ages 7-14. the 4yo sometimes empty trashcans, I hold the big bag, but mostly just trying to get them to pick up their toys still...

Anonymous said...

I've looked but couldn't found a email address. Am I missing it or is it not posted?

Anonymous said...

I'm probably too late but I have all of ours do chores. Of course the older you are, the more responsibility.

I suggest: the swiffer (just the plain dry one), a hand-held vaccum (can I get an Amen? that anywhere in a house with many children needs vacuuming?!), dust rag with or without dusting polish on it (depends on the duster but even a dry one helps), five-minute room rescues (you can have photos of things that need to be done like folding blankets, putting away remotes, etc.).

I also have chore cards and we use a 9-page pocket protector.When the the chore is done, they flip the card. We have gotten lax, but they still do it everyday. Some chores they do b/c they live here (like make your bed, even the 5YOs but I don't care what it looks like as long as they try--this is key!), and some chores they get paid to do (much like the real world: some jobs you do w/out pay and some jobs you get paid for).

I posted somewhere on my blog about our chores several months ago. I need to do an update. :) Enjoyed catching up on your family.

Wife of the Pres. said...

Oh and each day I have a kitchen helper (M-F, one person a day with 5 kids works nicely :). My kitchen helper picks our lunch menu and helps me pack lunches each morning, also helps clear after breakfast, and you guessed it sets the table for dinner and cleans up after and/or helps (the two 5YOs help but our 8, 11 and 12YOs completely clean the kitchen). This is one of their chores for the day and included in the paid category. :)