Do I overindulge Them? Maybe yes. For certain, I lack a sort of parental discipline that I wish I had.
In my early mommy days, I often joined a friend in her daily 3 mile walk around the reservoir, but by the time my son was walking, she’d leave me in the dust as Ryan and I picked up sticks and rocks, or I carried him while also pushing the stroller. This was never a problem for Melissa. You see, she didn’t give Jane shoes. “Sorry, Jane,” she’d say cheerfully, “You can’t come out of the stroller. We don’t have your shoes.” Ditto the swim club. While I spent hours digging and making rivers in the hot, sandy playground, Melissa chilled at the edge of the kiddie pool while Jane splashed about. “This is the swim club, Jane, not the sand club.” Jane has plenty of fun in her life, just not always at her mom’s expense.
I know it when I see it, but I just don’t have it. Until now. Cue the chore chart.
I was inspired by some adorable chore charts (check my pinterest board), but I was afraid of committing to something attached to the wall. I opted for over-the-cabinet towel bars and some shower curtain rings, now hanging on the laundry hamper in our mudroom/laundry area. The chore tags are laminated and have Ryan’s initial on the back – when a chore is completed, he flips the tag over.
It’s been a few weeks and it works. Ryan is proud of his chores, he comes running when I beckon “Hey, Recycling Man, we’re overflowing” or “Did I get any magazines today?” We don’t take it too seriously. Ate at a friend’s house? Hurray, no setting the table! Unbuckling his brother from the carseat or refilling my water bottle both count as a chore “choice.” I am thrilled to feel, so, well, disciplined. And the help is nice too.
Here’s a Chore Tags Printable for you. I left the initial off so you can personalize them with some white text of your choosing. Ryan seems to like seeing the row of Rs when the jobs are done, but I think we could also move the tags from one rack to another.
You know how good chores are for your kids. Right? If not, read what the experts say on which chores are appropriate for your child.
You know what else is good for your kids ? To see that you read books. Yes, books. Of your own choosing. Without pictures. Check out Love U Madly’s latest book review: The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grisson.