What systems do you use to keep your household running smoothly?
I’m starting to think about going back to work, but will need to streamline the household work first. We have a once-monthly housekeeper, but the rest of it is my job. DH expects the house to be clean and organized when he gets home at 9 PM, but his participation is limited by his work and commute. (His own stuff is always impeccably neat, at least until the children find it.)
For chores, I’ve just assigned each day of the week a time-consuming chore:
Mondays = Laundry
Tuesdays = Baking & dusting (I have to do a fair amount of baking due to kids’ food allergies)
Wednesdays = Floors & errands
Thursdays = Laundry again
Fridays = Meal planning & grocery shopping
Saturdays = Yard work
About a month in, this seems to be working, except that with sports practice and games on Friday, Saturday and Sunday I often have to throw in another load of laundry on Saturdays.
I clean the bathrooms and kitchen and tidy up the kids’ toys every day.
My kids all have their own chore lists – even the toddler. There is a small cash incentive for each chore completed, because my kids are not motivated by stickers.
The chores for the younger two include making their own beds (with help), wiping the kitchen table, putting dishes in the sink, sweeping the floor, and putting away toys.
The oldest (6) is expected to make her own bed and lunch. I’ve heard that some of her friends can do laundry and cook breakfast, so we are working on those. With the return to school and sports, the incentive system is not getting me the amount of work I would like – DD decided this morning that she would rather watch Curious George than get 25 cents for making her bed.
How have you gotten your kids to do their chores? What kinds of chores do you expect them to do?