Every so often we declare a Saturday Family Chore Day. The kids like to refer to it as the day mom tortures us with endless lists of horrifying tasks like cleaning toilets. But I look forward to these days for several reasons.
For one, I love getting up early and organizing the chore lists. It’s so much fun to take things off my never-ending list and put it on someone else’s. That’s a quick way to feel a sense of accomplishment. But I always make the lists somewhat humorous and the kids get a kick out of them. Everyone has a list including myself and my husband. He is usually not so perky about his but I love him for putting up with me. My list usually includes a lot of things to “pad” it to make me look far more productive than the rest of the family and give me plenty of time to sneak off for breaks. Oh come on… I earned them.
Another reason I love Family Slave Day is to see the kids accomplish something by working with their hands. Too often their hands are busy texting or playing video games. It’s nice to see them care for their home and take pride in the toilet they just cleaned. I also love to see them work together. Our older children help the younger children master the fine art of cleaning mirrors and sinks. Doing chores like this, they begin to learn that a clean house doesn’t happen with the snap of a finger. Imagine that!
Most importantly, the kids develop a sense of pride when they complete their chore lists. I praise them for having good attitudes too. They don’t always smile as I thrust a list of 72 things in their sweet faces. But more often than not, they now start their list with little grumbling and complete their jobs successfully the first time. On Saturday, when I praised my daughter for her sunny disposition she kindly replied,
“Oh I learned my lesson awhile back. If I complain, it isn’t pretty. So now I just smile and do it. And it isn’t that bad. I like us working together as a family.”
“I like it too,” my son added while on mopping duties. “It makes me feel like we are a team.”
You truly can’t get much better than that.
Evildoers are trapped by their sinful talk, and so the innocent escape trouble.
From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.
The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice.
Proverbs 12:13-15 (NIV)