Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Let the games begin!

We had the talk this morning. All of you who have children home for the summer know exactly what I'm talking about.

I thought maybe I'd give everyone a day off for the first day of summer vacation. But only took until about 10 am this morning until I couldn't take it any longer.

I made everyone sit down in the front room to assign chores and rules and, possibly most important, the car seating chart.

We resurrected the method that has worked well for the last two summers. We had to add Jenna in the rotation this summer so it changed a bit this year. But not much. We have a wheel that has four quarters. Everyone gets one meal and one room that they are in charge of for the week. I added a snack person this summer. Not sure what I'll do when Ben is ready to join in... Right now he just gets unload silverware and set the plates on the table.

Dallin and Landon will be doing their own laundry for the first time this summer. hmmmm... I hope laundry ability is not genetic.

Anyway, the kids all know pretty well what each room cleaning job entails and I must say they are quite good at it. They are actually very capable helpers. Here's the catch this year: the older boys have learned the power of money. Oh yes. Nearly every request is followed by "how much will you pay me to do it?" I had to take them on a field trip this morning to show all the kids that those beautiful green trees in the yard do not grow anything other than actual leaves. Which need to be cleaned up every now and then. Sorry. They were thrilled to hear that.

Landon especially is the banker of the group. He is completely enamored with the thought of a zero degree sleeping bag that can pack down to a mere 8 inches. And it only costs a bazillion dollars. Thanks a lot scout troop 106 for the field trip to Sportsman's warehouse. You have created a monster!

So of course they wanted to know what they get paid for. We made a list of jobs that are pay worthy and we also agreed that the consequences of breaking the rules involve doing a "pay" job for nothing. We made a list of rules.

1-No video games or TV before 12 noon
2-Do your own chores every day with only one reminder and do your best
3-No teasing
4-No complaining even if someone is teasing
5-do something nice for someone without letting anyone see you

I also get to be the judge of whether the jobs are done well enough.

#3 and #4 are obviously tricky but it was their idea. We'll see.

Once we got things settled I remembered that I actually enjoy having the kids home. When I can gather them up they are a lot of fun and very helpful. When they aren't fighting or complaining. And depending on how many neighborhood kids are over as well **big deep breath**

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