You've probably seen this somewhere. It's a lovely way to think because creative children (and adults, me included) are big mess makers. I'm not against messes made from fun and creative play. I'm against having the house condemned because we're living in a pig pen.
So you see I had to do something.
1.) ignore it
2.) nag all summer long
3.) just do it all myself
Option 1 was never a real option. I do not posses the ability to ignore messes. I might act like I'm ignoring it but it's driving me crazy.
Option 2 seemed exhausting and futile.
Option 3 seemed to be the easiest for me to wrap my head around but seemed to be admitting defeat and choosing poor parenting over hard parenting. I want to raise responsible, hard working, productive people. Part of that means they have to be able to clean up after themselves and it's my job to teach them that.
So I came up with
4.) You WILL clean this up and I don't care if it takes you all the live long day.
You won't believe how much they have cleaned today. If things keep going this well I may be willing to hire them out. 2 girls and and a mop. They are AMAZING! They've moved on from cleaning to general help and are counting Boxtops without so much as a little bitty whine right now. It's a whole school's worth of Boxtops too....no joke, I'm having them do my PTO job. I know this is just the beginning, the hard part is the everyday work. They know I'm serious though and I don't think they really want another hard labor day this summer. I've also come up with a chore chart for each girl and we're going back to allowance, which we left in the dust (pun absolutely intended) a few months ago. I'm also tying allowance to chores which we've not done in the past. I don't deny some of this is my fault. The school days get so busy and sometimes it's just easier to do it all myself and when they're not here during the day to continue on their mess making crusade I can keep up with it. Can you imagine how much free time I might have next year if they can catch on to this idea over the summer? This thought will keep me strong!
|She's the neatest of the bunch....by far! Though I do remember the other two were pretty neat toddlers too. What happened?!|