Family Magazine

Chore Charts and Clean Houses: Part Two.

By Mediocremom @mediocre_mom

This responsibility chart is the best thing I’ve ever done. Besides knowing Jesus, marrying the Nerd, and having my three girls. But it’s a close fourth.

The girls were able to cash in all the tickets they’ve earned thus far to go buy a pumpkin that I’m fairly certain is bigger than Goo. They were super excited.

The Nerd and I decided on a reward system based on either monetary value, or points. Each ticket is worth 10 cents. We’re on a tight budget, so I can’t go handing out fives and tens because my kids cleaned their rooms. But we figured this was a good way to reward each task and allow the girls to start learning about saving their money for bigger items.

We also allot points to each ticket. The girls can choose whether to cash in their tickets for points or money. Points can be combined to “purchase” activities like:

  • Family adventure (hiking, apple picking, beach day, etc.)
  • Movie night with popcorn and a rental
  • Sleepovers (where Goo and Punkin sleep in the same bed and stay up far too late giggling and talking)
  • Manicures at home

We spend as much time as possible as a family, anyway. And we do plenty of things together that girls don’t have to earn, just because I’m addicted to spending time with them. But this gives them a way to see that when we work together as a family, we play together as a family.

The chore chart was recently in full swing as we braced for MegaStorm/Hurricane/Dear-God-What-Is-That-Mass-Of-Swirling-Terror – Sandy. I had it in my head that we could be without power for days, so the entire house needed to be clean, with all the laundry washed, dried, folded, and – gasp – put away. And then I realized that in the event of a tree falling on the roof and torrential rain pouring in, nobody would be able to tell I mopped the floors.

The good news is, the storm didn’t affect us at all. It was barely windy. While I never want anyone to be hurt, I still really, really want to see a storm. Not some light rain and breeziness. I want to see tree bending, branches snapping craziness. Away from power lines and where anyone could be hurt.

Chore charts and clean houses: Part two.

The extent of our damage. Probably because freak storm 2011 wiped out every tree branch in the front yard.

Last year, during a freak snow storm in October, we waded through several inches of water in the basement to carry buckets upstairs to flush the toilet. No power. No water. No heat. For seven days, we, along with millions of others, scrambled to stay warm and dry and wait for life to be restored to the way we know it.

The bad news is that other areas are telling a very different story. Lives were lost. Homes are submerged in water. Millions are still without power. My prayers go out to those affected by the devastation. And we have yet another  reason to remember that what really matters are the ones we love. Because houses can be rebuilt. Flood waters will drain back into the ocean.

And my kids will keep following their responsibility chart. Hey, I’ve got a good thing going here.


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