It’s a necessary part of life so that we can enjoy the best parts of life. As much as I would love to write and tell you that my kids love chore day, I would be totally kidding you and myself. No, they definitely see chores as a necessary evil. Well … maybe just evil.
Having a large family requires team work. There is no way for one person (the Mama) to get it all done. The laundry piles are too high, the toys would no longer exist, and take out would be the only food in the house if only one person was keeping up with ten people’s worth of mess.
As head chief of the goings ons at home (throwing some country words in there), I have to delegate and then supervise to make sure chores are happening.
In this week’s “Our Life in 5” video, I explained how we break up our chores into daily, weekly and monthly chores. We use a dry erase board to post the current chores or to-do lists. (Sorry about the crooked picture but it’s hanging in our hallway and I couldn’t get it all in the picture without standing to the side a bit.)
I love this method as I don’t have to keep track of clothes pins, magnets or rewards. I just have to find my dry erase marker! It’s so flexible and can change each day or week as I need it to.
I keep daily chores simple and basic. These are the things that have to get done every day just to keep the house moving, meals on the table, clothes on the kiddos and a level of gross-ness away.
Every Saturday we have our “cleaning day”. We work as a team in the morning to get the big jobs done while the daily chores still have to be maintained. I break up the big jobs and pair a big kid with a little kid to tackle an area. The older child is teaching the younger so that one day that little one will take over that job. For example my 17 year old is teaching the 7 year old how to clean the yard, take out the trash and recycle, and vacuum the stairs.
Now before you start thinking I’m a mean mom and have no rewards in place for my hard working crew, I’m gonna let you in on how I encourage them. The idea is that of “many hands equals light work”. We want our children to be team players and work together, to encourage one another and to learn how to guide with a positive attitude. Every Saturday isn’t tulips and daisies, but the idea is there.
So if we all work together in the morning we should be done with our chores by lunch. So after lunch we rest, then the reward is ice cream Saturday’s! We either get to make homemade ice cream or go get an ice cream treat. We work together as a team and we get rewarded as a team.
My goal wasn’t to give you a list of jobs for your family, but to get the gears turning so that you can find what works best for your family. To remember that simple is best when you are looking to maintain something long term. And please don’t compare yourself to Pinterest pins, magazine worthy homes or your neighbor. We all live different lives, have different strengths and want different things out of life.