Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fostering Independent Kids Part 2: My house the sweat shop

Recently, I posted part 1 of this series. Taking it a step further, I have no problem also putting my kids to work for me. Hence, my sweat shop. No not really, but basically, I don't have a problem asking the boys to help out every once in a while. They help put the laundry in the washer or dryer and help put it away, carry in grocery bags, and get me things like a diaper or whatever when I am too lazy to get up. We've even been asking Ethan to help change diapers since each of his brothers have come along, and he refuses. Damn it! And when I was hugely pregnant with his brothers, sometimes when I dropped something, he was asked to pick it up. Like hell if I was going to bend over any more than I absolutely had to. But I would thank him and tell him what a big help he was, and you could practically see him swell with pride. 

The one drawback to the practice of putting them to work is that I have to balance whether or not they are going to make more of a mess helping me out than if I just do it myself - like the time one of my besties said that her daughters put all the groceries away for her but now, every time she opened a cupboard door, stuff fell out. Talk about giving one a complex; I'd start getting anxiety every time I walked into the kitchen. I can't stand stuff flying at my face - freaks me the F out!

In my house, nobody is exempt from my sweat shop - even the 16-month-old helps out. He has helped me stock toilet paper by carrying rolls from where we store it in the garage into the bathrooms, and has grabbed towels from the drawer to clean up water that he spills. He's picking up very quickly that his free ride only goes so far. He also helps me "sweep" after he eats - I set him on the floor and he eats the food he dropped.

Gross? Sure. But considering that I have caught him sucking on filthy shoes, frankly I'm not really bothered by him eating food he drops on the floor. A floor that I mop "somewhat" regularly. And holy moly, look at how white his socks are! They must have been brand new.

So, moms and dads, don't miss out on this gem you have at the ready; put those kids to work! You'll thank yourself for it, and really, they'll love the sense of responsibility they feel. Little kids love to please and this is one awesome way to help them accomplish that. Besides, it's been repeatedly said that "it takes a village" to raise children. Well, Nate and I have a small village right here in our house (feels weird to say that given that we're not quite up to the Duggar family's numbers) and let me tell you, I understand that saying completely. Completely.

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  1. Lol, my LO just started crawling last week And does he crawl to all the toys hours dad and I spend our hard earned cash on? No, he looks for our filthy shoes to chew on!


  2. My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work!

    Independent House in Chennai


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