Thursday, November 22, 2012

Chore Chart

Yes, I'm 26 years old, and I need a chore chart. Here it is.

I took a four week chart I found on pinterest and re-made it to work for me. I also printed off new ones for the kids since I SO want to be consistent with their chores. Grant is supposed to make his bed, clean up his toys, practice his music, and get a hug and kiss every day, while Rachel is supposed to make her bed, clean up her toys, and get a hug and kiss. It's really hard for me to be consistent; there's so many things I'm trying to accomplish with them. So here I am trying again!!!

One major thing you might notice is that I didn't include laundry on my chart. I basically do our laundry on an as-needed basis - if I notice we're running low on one thing, I'll throw the load in. The kids have tons of clothes, plus Grant has plenty of accidents still that force me to do his even when he still has plenty of clean clothes, so they don't seem to run out. Everything else, I check every few days - socks (lately I've been waiting and doing one big sock load of mine and Trevor's, mostly his), whites, towels, darks, jeans. The only thing I sometimes get behind on is towels, which includes dish towels for the kitchen and is the place we notice if I get behind. But I consider myself very efficient and on top of things when it comes to laundry, therefore it doesn't need to be on the chore chart - except bedding!

One of these charts I made a few years ago was a day by day exhaustive list of nearly everything that needs to be done in a day - empty the dishwasher, load the dishwasher, make the beds, laundry (split up into loads to be done on certain days) - but that was just ridiculous and didn't work for me. Some people do certain loads of laundry on certain days - one blog I read had a mom doing each person in the family's laundry on one specific day of the week, which really appeals to me, but not quite the right fit for now. Maybe someday. 

My chart also needs a bit more tweaking. I need to include cleaning the front door, cleaning the inside of the van, front and back entrances, scrub the kitchen table, wiping the walls, etc. There's also those less-than-once-a-month jobs - cleaning out the entire fridge, draining the hot water tank, cleaning the oven, backing up computer files onto the portable hard drive... and let's not even mention the outdoor chores that will be back in the spring - and the new rooms to clean once the basement is finished.

When we moved into our new house, Trevor and I challenged ourselves - knowing that what we were asking is impossible - to keep our house clean like the temple. It never is - we know it never will be - but we are going to keep trying, and that way it will maybe look mostly clean, some of the time.

Trevor also suggested that maybe my incentive for keeping up with my chore chart could be a night away from the kids while he watches them, which sounds fantastic to me. That's definitely something that could motivate me. We haven't set any details or discussed it at all further than his mention of it...

I strongly believe that getting my kids involved helps to build their self-esteem. They start to understand what it means to be a contributing member of the family, and it makes them feel good inside. 

I am learning, slowly, to be patient with myself, rather than punish myself emotionally with negative self-talk, to keep trying again the next day. I rarely keep this schedule. Things will get pushed a few days back. With three of us using three bathrooms, they don't really get that dirty, so sometimes it's just a "check kids' bathroom" instead of really cleaning it; I'll just give the toilet bowl a scrub.

I couldn't do any of this without Trevor's help. He is always cleaning. His big thing is the floors - he's a self-admitted floor obsessor. He doesn't want them wrecked and he tries really, really hard to keep them clean. He usually does the front and back entrances all on his own, as well as the hardwood, and if the carpets are getting bad he always grabs the vacuum himself. He's awesome.

My challenge is trying to enjoy the kids - appreciate how little they are - in spite of their messes!

Good luck to everyone out there who is trying to have a cleaner home :) I believe it CAN be done.

Although some days - this graphic is accurate.

I think it's because Trevor helps so much that I can usually pick all three. 

I'm off to fold laundry.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

House Tour

Grass = totally photoshopped. 
We only have dirt. Actually, right now it's super dirty mounds of snow.

Living room - view into kitchen/dining

Back yard view

Front door and den

My dream kitchen.


Dining room. Kids have a nice big bench that's perfect for them.

We LOVE our master bedroom. The photographer didn't 
include photos of the kids' rooms on the CD we received so
I'll have to take some myself.

Master bath with our amaaaazing shower. Come try it.

Top of the stairs - first door on the left is Grant's room, second
door is Rachel's room and you can see her pink wall in this photo.
Across from her room is the upstairs laundry and kids' bathroom.

We LOVE our new home!!! It's much better in person, so please stop by 
if you haven't already (it won't be as clean as this though!!!)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Preschool Pictures

Look at this little face! Last week I said to Trevor, "One day the endless stream of pee underwear will stop and he won't be begging me to snuggle him at bedtime anymore, and I will miss it terribly."

Until then - I have a washing machine that allows me that precious snuggle time.

Home Sweet Home

We moved into our new house on August 30th - and we absolutely LOVE it. There are hardly words to describe how grateful we are for it - how blessed we feel. Truly, both Trevor and I feel as though it must only be temporary because we simply don't deserve to live here. Surely someone is going to knock on the front door and say "Just kidding!" So we're enjoying it while it lasts.

My kitchen is an absolute dream. The kids have adjusted much better than I expected - they each have their own room - and now that it's dark again outside they are back to sleeping 12 hours a night.
Grant and Rachel are both in music class again - although Grant's class is serious business this year. He has to practice every day and can identify C, D, E, F and G on the piano. He is also in preschool four afternoon a week!
Rachel is getting more and more grown up. She asks to use the potty, although with no results, I think she would like to toilet train but I can't seem to commit...

Here he is with his preschool friends (the ones we carpool with):

And, because I have so much time on my hands and my house is always clean, we're having another baby in March! Bring on the madness!

Picking its nose maybe? That would definitely make it related to Grant...

Trevor and I are speculating that it is a boy, judging by how sick I've been - more than with Rachel, with vomiting continuing past the first trimester... and Trevor had a dream where we had three more boys in addition to Grant. Yikes. It's a good thing we have a backyard.

In other news - last Monday, I chopped my hair off, pretty much completely. I was finally READY and man it feels good!!!

And it looks way, way better now that I got some wax gel and hairspray in it. It feels amazing. I keep thinking "I've got to take my ponytail out" when I get in the shower - and then realize it's GONE! I'm not sure how to describe the amount of hair I left on my hairdresser's floor - but it was a LOT. It looked like an entire animal had died in her kitchen.

The kids were able to come to a costume parade at my work on Halloween, Grant's preschool party, and we went trick or treating at the mall - I called it quits after that - so that they could get to bed at 7, and also because the sidewalks near us were incredibly slick from the freezing rain and it was a broken tailbone waiting to happen out there. They were both very cute saying "Trick or treat!"

I was just about to post Grant's preschool picture, but as I went to take the photo off the CD - I thought the price we paid got us one color photo of one pose - I got a fabulous surprise as on the CD there were 5 different poses/crops with each one in color, black and white, and sepia - so they now deserve their own post. We also had new family photos done which are adorable! But you may have to wait until the Christmas card to see...