One thing that I have noticed through the last decade of bearing 5 children is the more I had, the more I craved order.
LOVE me so order..
Chaos ensues hourly within these walls of mine. Lucky for me I have the most challenging ages under the same roof at one time. Teen, Pre-teen, 8 (there is something about 8 that just drives me batty), 2 (almost 3, which is like arguing with a drunk person EVERY SINGLE DAY, only they don't sober up for an entire YEAR) and a newborn. Do you see my need for order?
Organization is right up there with God in keeping me semi-sane.
OK, maybe not always in that order. But pretty darn close.
Now let me remind you that being organized does NOT mean that I am consistent. In fact I am so very inconsistent at being consistent. That saying it takes 15 days to form a new habit.. I will never know because I've never made it that far. Being inconsistent is most likely the reason I crave organization and why I am constantly revamping my organized ways. To some how bring order to my chaos.
Anyway, some of you asked me to show you some of my madness.
First, the daily routine. I created this because running a homeschooled house with all those ages is distracting. Depending on how much sleep I get, I know that I can refer to the routine without having to use my brain to much or I send the kids to read it so they stay on track.
(click on image to make it bigger)
Second there is my 2 week menu plan. There are a lot of free templates on Pinterest for meal planning. I signed up for Motivated Moms 7 or 8 years ago and it came with a template. It's a plain jane simple to the point menu plan. I have tried others, but always come back to using this one. :)
I do not stick to the dates. Since we rarely eat out I use this as my restaurant menu. I know that I have all the ingredients to make anything on there, so I pick one that I feel like making and then highlight it so I don't make it again within the next two weeks. I usually put this on the side of my fridge.
(front of my fridge)
To the right of the daily routine is the Parent Chore Chart. Then I have the kids chore charts. I am VERY VERY grumpy when I have a messy house. When I don't follow this, and my kids don't follow their chore chart- hell hath no fury. I raise Cain. I scratch my head like no tomorrow. (if you ask my kids what that means they will tell you "clear the room, she's gonna blow!"). Sad, but true.
We pay the kids each $30 dollars a month at the beginning of each month. Every day just before dinner Dale checks to make sure they have done all of their chores. For each chore they haven't done they give us a dollar. Whatever they are left with at the end of the month is their paycheck. We did the daily commission, we did allowances. But I was tired of being on them all the time for doing their job. In the real world your employer is not going to press their thumb upon you to make sure you are doing your work correctly, and he sure as heck isn't going to pay you for work you don't do. The deal with paying them in advance is that they can not spend the money until the end of the month. It seems to be working the best out of all the other things I have ever tried.
Just this month I created a new "chore" for them to do. If you look at the chore charts you will see each one of them has a day where it says- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner. It's important to Dale and I to teach them life skills so they can function well as adults. So they have been making or help make one meal in each category each week.
Tables/Chairs means they wipes them down.
Dishes means they are either loading or unloading the dishwasher.
I usually switch this around from my master list of chores every 3-6 months so they all learn how to do a chore properly. I believe having them do chores not only teaches them how to keep a proper house when they decided to move out, but it also prevents entitlement issues.
The world owes them nothing. My job as being a stay at home mom is not to be their slave. It's to instruct and train them up in the way they should go. We are all in this together. It's what works for our family. Dale and I feel a conviction to implement these things. To each their own.. ;) I say this because some believe kids should be able to make messes and not be accountable for their actions. Creating a wicked sense of self entitlement. No Thanks! We make plenty of messes around here, but we work together as a team to clean them up. :)
So, there you have it. My organized ways. And just to keep it real. A before and after picture of what happens when mom doesn't follow the parent chore chart.
The Laundry Room