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what a chore

October 13, 2011

a clean house means more reading time

Over the last month we’ve instigated a new routine around here. It is “the chore”. Every weekday morning Lukas and I do a chore together to maintain the house. He learns about what you need to do to keep a house clean and I do not have to think about cleaning the house anymore. If I see a dirty kitchen floor, I just think, “Wednesday that will be clean” and forget about it. Before, I would throw it on the mental pile of do-to items that are never really accomplished. And, as was pointed out to me recently, maintenance is never done and that kind of work can not bring the same kind of satisfaction that goals can bring. So we approach it a little differently.

“The chore” begins when I sing the chore song, which is only 2 lines long and then I don’t have to mention to L that there’s a chore. Monday we clean one bathroom, Tuesday we clean the next one, Wednesday it’s kitchen floor, Thursday it’s dining room and living room floors, Friday it’s bedroom floors. We use natural cleaning supplies so L can help easily. Lots of vinegar and baking soda. The chore takes anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes, depending on how much energy we want to give it. (and how Lukas is helping…) The first week it took a while, because things were so dirty. But now that they are pretty clean, it doesn’t take long at all and I barely notice we are doing it. If we’re late for something or low energy, we can whip through it, if not, and it’s kitchen day, maybe we clean the kitchen cupboards too. He loves this kind of work. Give the kid a spray bottle and a rag and he’s cleaning cupboard doors for 20 minutes. None of this takes “straightening” into account, except for the moment after the chore. We try to do a daily straightening in the evening and it doesn’t always get done. But at least the floors are not coated with dirt!

I like having the house be cleaner. And I like teaching L that the house doesn’t clean itself. It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty good. Yaa! And that gives us all more time to relax and read on the couch.

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