Wow, this blog has been suffering. With my craft site, the adoption blog, and my facebook page (both personal and Knits and Knots) I don't have much time or energy left for updating this space. I mostly post family photos and updates on facebook, which doesn't leave much leftover for here. I thought it would be fun to share on here about something new I am trying out with the kids though.
It is summer here. Since we could be called to leave for S. Korea to get Alex at any moment, I've become aware that its our last summer for a while where everyone's potty trained and no one needs a nap! The kids and I sat down the other day and worked out a weekly schedule that includes time with Aunt Lisa, time at the pool, downtime, and playdates. I didn't want to fill the summer completely with entertainment though. I thought it would be smart to start having the kids help with weekly chores. Once we have another child in the home, maintaining a clean living space will be that much harder. I realized that Eli and Anna were probably also more capable of helping then I give them credit for!
Today I assigned each of the kids a bathroom. We went to the store and bought for each of them: a bucket, a toilet brush, a empty spray bottle (to contain vinegar water), a small bottle of liquid dish soap, wash cloths, and a pack of baby wipes. I took them one by one into their assigned bathroom and taught them how to clean the toilet, sink, and tub. The removed the bath towels and put them in the washing machine and hung clean ones on the racks. We used vinegar water for the sinks and tubs, and dishsoap for the toilets, and the baby wipes were for wiping down the toilet seats and rim of the toilet (the one place in my home I insist on using a disposable wipe on... eeew!). They were both so proud of helping, and they did a great job!
I think as parents in our society we tend to think of our kids as something we have to take care of, but we forget our responsibility to raise them into adults who can care for themselves. While they may not have done as thorough of a job as I would (and I'll still have to go in and do a thorough cleaning myself at times) they did pretty good for their first time. It did take longer than it would have to do it myself, but if I can train them well over the summer, its possible that by the time the school year rolls around and we've got a 3rd child, I may be able to send them off to clean their respective bathrooms and we'll have an overall cleaner and healthier home. And, my kids will have the self-confidence to know they are an active part of our family! Hurray for empowering my children :)