I have a confession.  I’ve been remiss the last couple of months of managing our home well.  Oh sure, I’ve sorta been doing my job – blurting out commands every now and then when the house seemed too out of control.  But the frustration level isn’t really worth this kind of management.  My true confession?  Sometimes I just get tired of managing and would like someone else to take charge – just for a little bit 🙂

So after I apologized to my husband and my kids, I got serious again about getting “life” back in order.  My kids have had chore charts all their lives.  Since before they could read they had chores to do – I used pictures to describe their different jobs.

My biggest challenge in all these years, is trying to be creative in how I presented the work that needed to be accomplished.

I needed something new…

Dave had picked up these graft note cards and he handed me a bunch.  Perfect!  Lines to write on, boxes to check off completed chores, not too big….yep, these would be perfect.

The hardest aspect for me in keeping chore lists is being consistent.  It takes time and forethought to make this system work.  I MUST remember that the time and effort is so worth the outcome – a cleaner more organized home, happy animals, a neater looking farm, and children who haven’t been nagged by their mother all day.

So I started with the new system….I always find it interesting how each child responds to the chore lists.  When they’re handed out, the kids read over the list, ask questions for further clarification, and work the lists into their own schedule.

How they each keep their lists also reveals some of their individual personality.

Victoria is a “checker.”  Finish the job and check it off….but keep the card neat and tidy, a minimalist.

Michael obviously calculates the time in his day, the efficiency of the tasks to be completed in that time, and then prioritizes his jobs accordingly with a number system.  Once completed – cross them off…

Megan is a line crosser – very neatly.  She also wants to make sure that there is credit for ALL the work that’s been done.  Notice the “x2″ on the first chore.  We have 2 cat boxes and she had to do both of them 🙂  The other day I verbally added to her list – please vacuum Mom and Dad’s bedroom.  She completed the task and them brought down her list for me to write that chore on so she could cross it off.  I asked her why she didn’t write it on there herself and she said,”because my handwriting doesn’t look like yours!”   …the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree.

And then there’s Alexandra!  She’s my “artsy” one…wanna guess what her bedroom looks like most of the time??  A lot like this card 🙂

I needed a place to put these cards once I had made them.  I’ve done all kinds of things before: magnets on the fridge, taped to the wall, left on the table….but I wanted something new.

I have these hooks under my cupboards for hanging herbs.  Why not chore lists?

By the look of this picture, I need to add “clean the walls under the cupboards.”

I hole punched each card and hung them up.

The kids liked the new system and I liked the convenience of the all the cards being in one spot.  Also, when the kids have completed the lists, they’re to hang them back up so I can check the lists and their work.  Follow through is important….I’m still working on that part.

My goal is to have the cards hung up each morning before they all get up out of bed.  I do carry around a small pocket notebook and write down jobs throughout the day that I see need to be done.  I often use that list to create their chore list.  I even write down the common ones that have to be done every day, i.e. – feed the dogs.  There’s such satisfaction in checking off each item and feeling productive!

Wanna know something interesting that I discovered?  Made me chuckle…

Michael is the only one of my kids who numbered his chore list.  Male/female thing?  Or just him….

I went into the laundry room to write down some items on our white board for the grocery list….

Guess who started this list???  Not me, I don’t number the items.

Dave!!   So maybe it is a male/female thing after all…..well, at least in our home 🙂

Life around here is a bit neater, more organized, and less frustrating when it comes to chores.

First item on my chore list every day?

Make up chore lists for the kids….