I had chores as a kid, so I see it’s only fitting to make my kids do chores too. Whenever my brothers or I complained about helping around the house, my Dad would inevitably holler out one of his favorite phrases, “That’s why I had kids, to do work around the house.” We complained a lot so I heard that sarcastic phrase ad nauseam growing up.
Well we are one week into Olivia doing chores, and I don’t think I’ve heard her complain yet. In fact, she’s downright excited about doing them. I call her my pleaser kid. She’s the type of kid that likes crossing things off her to do list, or in the case of her chore chart, putting stars next to her completed chores.
I wish we would have started the chores much sooner because I don’t think I’ve seen Olivia & Erin’s bedroom, or the family room stay as neat and tidy as it has for the last week. I’m also doing a whole lot less yelling. Well I’m still yelling, but just not about our messy family room or their dirty bedroom.
Olivia does have added incentive to do her chores. If she does them, she gets cash.
We decided an allowance of five bucks a week was fair. Olivia seems pretty happy with it too, even though she knows $5 isn’t going to buy her very much. The money isn’t really the point. In fact, we didn’t tell her she was getting paid for doing chores until a few days ago. Olivia responded by saying, “Really? You’re paying me for doing what I’m told?” Yes. Yes, we are.
I’d be lying if I said I’m having her do chores and giving her an allowance to teach her responsibility. Yes, that’s a nice perk, but I’m having her do it for purely selfish reasons. I’m tired of spending my evenings picking up after the kids. I’m tired of telling Olivia to read every night. The chore chart has taken care of that…. at least for now. I’ve got no grand illusions that this will last. I’m sure the novelty of putting stars next to her completed chores will wear off, and at some point, Olivia will not so willingly do as she’s told. For now, however, I’m taking advantage of my pleaser kid wanting to please her Mom and Dad.