Chore List by Age

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Our second child was born only 16 months after our first. And I don’t have to tell you that I was stressed. But I will. With two babies I couldn’t get anything done and the dishes and laundry were piling up. I needed some help, somewhere.

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Around this time I was reading a parent magazine (probably in the doctor’s office because that was the only place I had the time or ability to read anything). Anyway, I ran across an article about kid’s chores. My stomach leapt with joy when I read that a 2-year-old could take their dishes to the sink after a meal by themselves. Seriously, I could expect #1 to help out that soon? This was good news. No, this was fantastic news. I had no idea I could expect them to do things this early. I read on. I asked friends. I found out all the things a 2-year-old might be able to help do and I started implementing them.

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I had visions of sitting on the sofa watching HGTV while my 2-year-old cleaned the house and made dinner. Well, it’s not quite like that but it is an important part of learning how to be a part of a family. Here you see #1 feeding #2 some of her water. A little for you – a little for me. Well, now I know she can give the baby a bottle in a pinch. I’ll take it.

So, here is a list of chores by age.

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TIP: I give “promotions” once in a while from one chore to another. The kids love it and it’s fun to see the pride on their faces when they realize they are being given a “higher” responsibility.

Click here for a free printable version of the chores list by age.

Laundry Language

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Laundry. The never ending chore. I don’t dislike doing laundry…when I do it. It’s just a pain to stay on top of it. And then when it gets out of control it’s overwhelming. Unfortunately, this is something that can happen very quickly in my house.

With each additional child the laundry grows exponentially and it is not a chore you can consolidate. It’s just one, big, continuous chore. Some people like to do it all in one day, others have a weely schedule. I have tried it all. So here are some ideas that I have found work the best for this family of 7.

1. CREATE A SCHEDULE – And stick to it because if you get behind it’s going to hurt. Here’s mine:
Monday – towels and sheets
Tuesday – towels and sheets
Wednesday – small’s clothes
Thursday – big girl’s clothes
Friday – rags/whites
Saturday/Sunday – husband and I
* This leaves room over the weekend for any extra loads needed. There’s always at least one.
My schedule is posted in the laundry room for all to see. This keeps everyone on the same page and has eleviated many laundry arguments.
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2. GET HELP – I find that the folding and putting away of the laundry is the most time consuming. So I did some active researched on my kids and found out that at the age of 3 they can help put away their own clothes and they can help move it from the washer to the dryer. By 4 or 5 they can help put things on hangers, 6 they can help you fold and 8 they can do a load by themselves. By the time my oldest was 8 she was capable of putting her clothes in the washer, adding the soap and turning it on all by herself as long as the soap was within reach. At this point I have the two oldest do their own laundry on their day.
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3. KEEP IT SEPARATE – In my house each bedroom has it’s own dirty clothes hamper. Each hamper get washed and dried together and taken right back to the room it came from. This eliminates a lot of sorting. The only mixed load I do is the whites. But I find this to be a huge timesaver.
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4. DON’T PUT IT AWAY – As another idea, I have a friend who has two clothes hampers in each room. One for dirty clothes and one for clean clothes. No one ever has to put clothes away, just take them from their dirty clothes hamper, wash them and dump them in the clean clothes hamper. This technique is often used in my sons room. If you kept the two bins in the closet it looks the same as putting it in your dresser. No one knows the difference. And think about it, no folding, no putting away, no hanging. Simple and fast.
5. MAKE IT ENJOYABLE – I like to put on music while I fold, or treat myself to a break when I am done. Also, I enjoy having the kids work with me. It makes the time go faster and it gives us time to talk.
If this is a chore you don’t like to do either, please share your laundry secrets – I would love to hear them.

 

Challenge #29 – Washing Machine

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I would blame this on my acute sense of smell, but since so many others have told me that their washing machine stinks too, I can’t rightfully claim any super smelling power this time. My washing machine smells musty and stinky.

Does yours smell too? Don’t lie.

Lucky for us, this is an easy fix. Took me 3 minutes today!

That’s just what we need right now, something easy. I have read all sorts of things about these front loaders and their stinky smells. You can clean them with vinegar, bleach, baking soda concoctions. But I like this:

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This is all I used. One tablet in the machine and then set it on the hottest setting and let it run. Easy and done.

It gets rid of the smell for a while, but it always comes back. I also find that if I leave the door open in between loads it helps too. But from everything I have read I understand this is just an issue with these front loaders. Oh well.

One more day of this crap, and tomorrow is going to be a good one!

 

 

Challenge #19 – Laundry Room

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This is my laundry room. Two of my best friends live here. We spend a lot of time together, laughing over silly jokes and crying over stained clothes.

While this is an area of the house that does a great deal of cleaning, it rarely gets cleaned well. I have a shelf over my dryer that holds the soaps and stain removers. Sometime, before we moved in, some laundry soap was spilled on it. So it looked like this before I cleaned it this week.

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It looks great now. It did take a lot of water to eventually get all of that soap off, but I didn’t spend more than 30 minutes cleaning the room. Here’s what I did:

1. I cleaned the wire shelf with sponges and lots of trips to the sink to rinse.

2. I cleaned the soap drawer on my washer with a Clorox wipe to get the mildew and dirt out of it.

3. On the washer I also cleaned the inside rubber ring around the door. We all know that gets nasty.

4. On the dryer I cleaned the lent trap with a vacuum hose to get out the stuff that gets trapped in the hose. (This is something that I do a few times a year to prevent fires.)

I’m guessing your laundry room could use some special attention too!

If you are getting tired of this exercise, stay with me, we only have a few more days of this. We can make it to the end!

Want to join me in this 30 day easy spring cleaning challenge where we thoroughly clean one thing each day in 30 minutes or less? Please click on the follow my blog button on the right menu bar (or below) and you will receive a daily post with a new project.