Friday, August 3, 2012

Rushing to beat the before-school rush...

My head is spinning with the planning involved for the start of the school year.  I am making lists and organizing whatever I can, trying to get this family READY for the new routine.  I will miss the lazy mornings, and I will miss my big kids, but I admit I am looking forward to a change of pace as well.
FlyLady cartoon
I’m fluttering along with the flylady, and this year, it is my goal to establish daily routines not just for myself but for the children, to keep this house and this life running along (ideally, without me constantly nagging or barking at the children.)

The children who are old enough to read have been given daily checklists.  My four-year-old has a shorter one, with pictures by the words. I have printed out my weekly jobs and daily jobs, and we are practicing this week.  Today, I woke up late and the bigger kids had 50% of their jobs done before I had even turned on the coffee pot. They are putting me to shame!

Why routines?
Less morning stress: lists will give them direction, so I (eventually) won’t need to prod them along with words.  Results indicate they will need my words along with their lists for the first few weeks, but they should need my direction less and less.

Responsibility: Big kids learning that they are part of a family and have daily responsibilities for keeping this house running smoothly.  We work together, and then we have more time to play together.

Focus:  We have scheduled a devotion and prayer time into our routines. This is hard to make room for in the before-school rush, but if it is on the list, they will make me do it!  (More on this tomorrow!)

Fun Saturdays: Though we will have a few extra chores to do on the weekend, I hope to use flylady’s strategies to keep this house running through babysteps, rather than dedicating an entire day to housework. Weekends are for play.

At least, I hope.


How do you handle the before-school rush?
I'd love to hear your ideas!

For those of you who are curious about the daily jobs assigned to my children, I will post them in the comments.

13 comments:

  1. 9yr old: weekday chores

    Morning
    Get dressed
    Teeth
    Make bed
    Feed Oliver

    Bathroom:
    Replace stray items
    Close cupboards and drawers
    Take out trash
    Replace trash bag
    Spray smelly stuff

    Afternoon
    Piano
    Put away all piano books and papers
    Homework
    Put away all homework items
    1/2hour reading

    Evening
    Bathroom: Empty Counter
    Clean mirror
    Straighten towels
    Nothing on floors
    Swish toilet
    Clean sink and faucet

    Clothes out for tomorrow
    Teeth
    Backpack ready



    7yr old- weekday chores

    Morning
    Get dressed
    Teeth
    Make bed
    Living room: Declutter: Return misplaced items to their homes
    Straighten blankets and pillows
    Water station if needed (ask mom)

    Afternoon
    Piano
    Put away all piano books and papers
    Homework
    Put away all homework items
    1/2hour reading

    Evening
    Living room: Check for toys under couches
    Straighten Bookcase
    Straighten DVDs etc by the TV
    Clean windows as needed
    Sweep as needed

    Clothes for tomorrow
    Brush teeth
    Backpack ready


    6yr old-- weekday chores
    Morning
    Get dressed
    Teeth
    Make bed
    Clean under table
    Replace chairs
    Feed copper


    Afternoon
    Homework
    Put away all homework items
    1/2hour reading


    Evening
    Dining room:
    Check table- put away things that do not belong
    Clean under table
    Replace chairs
    Clean the rest of the floor
    Straighten shelves
    Windows as needed

    Teeth
    Clothes for tomorrow
    Backpack ready


    4yr old- weekday chores
    (illustrated)


    Get dressed



    Teeth



    Make bed



    Wipe table



    Pennies for the day

    Evening



    Teeth



    Clothes for tomorrow



    Backpack ready

    ReplyDelete
  2. LISTS make me smile!!! I PROMISE you ladies if you stick with this, it will pay off in the end! My kids are 14,15,18, and 20 this year. I remember the days of chore/school lists. Of schedules and routines. Some days it seemed near impossible to accomplish 25% of those lists! But then, seemingly out of nowhere, my kids didn't need the charts. We did not spend weekends catching up on what was missed, and there was actually something odd happening. Mom---that's me---had Time on my hands! Yes, you read that right. TIME to: read non-school research items, sew for pleasure, plan a website-wink! The house is generally neat and tidy 90% of the time! the routines we established in our home over the years became just that! Now I see my kids making their own to-do lists and they are happy when they get things done. To be sure---not ALL my kids are hyper organized but when they leave home, I know they will know HOW to keep life tidy. Whether or not that actually DO...remains to be seen. I have 2 off to college and they are pretty good at it and 2 more at home. I'll fill you in in 5 years and see how the other 2 work out!
    In the mean time...happy list making!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Donna Thank you for this!
      I needed to hear this today! :)

      Delete
    2. Yes, Donna. This is so encouraging. My oldest is five, and I feel I can finally delegate without being right there with her...Not quite there for my three year old boy, though. He collapsed into whiny "I can'ts" under the dining room table when I had him sweep up all the crumbs...

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  3. Impressive!

    What I'm wondering is how I can find time for my guys to do this kind of thing before they get on the bus at 7:20 in the AM. They do NOT rise easily in the morning.

    After school time disappears quickly b/c they don't get home til 4:00. I just find it easier to do chores myself and then hand out some weekend ones for them.

    Any ideas??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know what you mean. I am sure it is different for every family. Now that my oldest is in sports I am feeling like their at-home time is precious and I don't really want to spend it barking at them to do stuff.

      Are you content doing it the way you're doing it? If so, just keep doing it that way :)

      If it seems like they are creating all kinds of unnecessary work for you because they don't realize how much work it takes to pick up after them (this is how I feel about my kiddos!) then you might want to consider small daily jobs.

      For us, if I keep them doing daily little things as part of their routine, the housework overall is MUCH less and they seem to get the habit of being responsible for the state of the house, picking up after themselves and so forth. Though this list looks long, it got done in about 15 minutes this morning (not counting the time it took them to eat. FOREVER. But it was because they were excited and chatty!)

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  4. To help with getting dressed, my older girls (5 & 3), have a mesh sweater organizer is their closet. When I'm putting clothes away ( or they are), we fill each shelf with clothes for each day (including socks, undies, and anything else they need. This way, in the morning, they get to have limited choices about what they wear and we know everything is all set to go. My oldest is going to be in kindergarten this fall, so I'll probably mark a shelf as an outfit that's ok for a PE Day (no dresses). Doing a bunch of days all at once saves a lot of time, there are no fights about what to wear, and the dressers stay organized :) Carrie cook

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oooh that is a great idea! I do put their clothes in drawers as outfits, but this makes so much sense!

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  5. back to school already? ah! our kids here still have 3 weeks of summer left! Ihope everyone settled into thee new year---
    read your letter as parents recently-but couldn't commenton my iphone...LOVED IT!
    :)
    ah, lil guy awake!!!!! blessings dear!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LUCKY! I wish we had 3 more weeks! Oh well, we're on a balanced schedule here now, and I am looking forward to the two week break in october! Camping is in the plans!

      Delete
  6. I LOVE this post! This is the first time I have been to your wonderful blog, and I'm enjoying my visit. I will be impulsive here and ask you to consider linking up to our "EOA' Wednesday link-up party to share this with other readers. It is just the kind of encouragement I'm desiring to share there with Moms :)
    Many blessings, new friend!
    Jacqueline

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jacqueline!
      I will head over you to your place and link up- thank you for the invite! I hope you come visit again!

      Delete
  7. I did the list thing with my kids who are now 22, 20 and 16. The older two live at university and when they come home, it is like pulling (my) teeth to get them to do anything unless I threaten (no car, no food, no drive back to university). Thankfully, the younger one will still do her chores. Thanks for sharing with us at No Ordinary Blog Hop. Every blessing, Kelly

    ReplyDelete

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