At our house, as you know from the quee-chee post, we all do chores.
Big Daddy gets a reprieve from alot of them for two, simple reasons:
1. He works outside our home.
2. We have no grass to mow, and the garbage needs to be handled when he’s at work, usually. Refer back to reason 1.
While he does his fair share, the Diva and I do the bulk of the chores around here, and I don’t mind one bit. I’m so grateful to be able to stay home for the first time in my life and homeschool my daughter that a little sweeping here and there doesn’t phase me in the slightest. Back in the day, when I was working about 60 hours a week, chores made me bitter and disgruntled, but NO MORE! Like Brooks and Dunn say, “I’m a brand new man!” Wait, I’m not a dude. Oh, nevermind.
Anywho, the Diva still tends toward bitter and disgruntled where chores are concerned; however, chores are a way of life. Adam was placed in the garden to work it (Gen. 2:15), then he and “the woman [God] gave [him]” sinned, and it got even worse (Gen. 3: 17-19).
We bear out that curse today. Can I get an, “Amen”?
The sooner the Diva gets used to it, the better off she’ll be, I say.
“Welcome to a fallen world, Sister!”I say.
The Diva pulls the covers over her head.
Anyway, thought I would share with you the process by which we manage her chores and allowance.
We use a chore chart.
I got tired of saying, “Did you brush your teeth? Did you make your bed? Did you straighten your room? Have you done the dishes?” So I solved the problem. I am a problem solver. It’s like rocket science, really.
Basically, there are three, main times of the day that the Diva does chores: between waking up and breakfast, after breakfast, and evening. She is responsible for checking on the chart whether she did it or not. This requires her complete honesty. The penalty for not being honest is bad.
And she knows it.
She may not get to go to Sonic for weeks, and that’s just not something she’s willing to risk.
The Diva’s a rocket scientist, too.
Once a week, on Sunday morning, she brings me her signed chore chart, and I trade it for her allowance. This is the way the world works. At the end of a pay period, an employee brings his/her boss a signed time card, and it’s traded for a paycheck, more or less.
The responsibility is fully on her.
And never, never any fussing over it.
God forbid there be any yelling. We don’t yell in our house. Yelling makes me nervous. Plus, it isn’t necessary.
Her allowance is a dollar per week per year of age ($10 per week, at current), and she’s required to save 10% and tithe 10%. After that, she can generally spend her money however she wants, within reason. Sometimes reason (aka Mommy) has to step in, but not usually.
Here’s the beauty of this plan, besides a child’s self-regulation: a few weeks ago, when the cable guy came to install our internet service, the Diva got up from the breakfast table and started working on her laundry (she does her own laundry except for reaching down into the washer to get the wet clothes out…she’s too short).
Cable Guy stared at her for awhile. Thinking he might be a nut, I smiled at him as if to say, “Get back to work before I have to put the smack down on you, buddy. You obviously don’t know with whom you are messing.”
He said, “How did you get her to do that? I can’t get my kids to do anything around our house!”
I smiled and shared the Biblical basis for this exercise (the idea of work…above, and the concept of honoring one’s mother and father).
He grinned and told me he hadn’t been to church in awhile and wondered if he should go back.
I went on to talk about how our recognition of God’s grace in our lives compels us to live with grace.
He was sure he should go back to church.
And take his punk kids.
His words; not mine.
Through obedience to her parents, the Diva was, potentially, able to lead an entire family back to the Lord.
She rocks I Timothy 4:12, I say.
She wonders if that deserves a trip to Sonic.
It is what it is.
Couldn’t be more joyful,