Ever the optimist, I believe this new Clothespin Chore System is going to revolutionize my house cleaning. And family relationships. And possibly bring world peace.
Because you know that thing where every day you say, “Hangupyourcoatputawayyourshoesandwhereisthatblastedlunchbox?” No? Just me?
My words are tired.
And it took our Kindergarten teacher only 2 days to whip 28 kids into a routine. Seven months into the school year and I am still a waffling naggy nagster with only 4 of my own monkeys.
So I decided this Mama needed a system. And if it was going to sit on my counter, it had to be pretty.
Eons ago I saw a fabulous idea for a chore system. And since then, the supplies I bought to make it have been collecting dust in a corner. But today? Today I put the finishing touches on this idea.
The Reveal of the Clothespin Chore System
Please celebrate this small victory of crossing the finish line. With the help of my 5 year old assistant who kept me motivated.
- Tin bucket from Michael’s (with a 40% off coupon, of course)
- One different colour of acrylic paint for each child (dollar store)
- Plain clothespins (dollar store)
Total cost: under $20
Landon and I painted half the clothespins so there was enough room to write on each one. I tried really hard to not micromanage and he proudly painted his colours all by himself.
Each child chose their own colour clothespin. After the paint dried, I wrote down all the daily tasks my kids need to do without ever being reminded again in their entire lives. Never. Ever. Ever.
There are so many other things you could add to the list of expectations, depending on the stage you are at. Brush teeth, get dressed quickly, wake up without complaint…..
I kept it pretty simple for our launch.
Explain the System
Every child is responsible to move all of their coloured clothespins into the bucket by the end of the day.
So Orange Boy will make his bed in the morning. Plink (clothespin hiting the bucket bottom). Then he’ll put his shoes and coat away after school. Plink. Then he will empty his lunch box and put it in the dishwasher. Plink.
I am praying that the delicious sound of the Plink will be addictive. And they will keep coming back for more. Or, more likely, I may require all pins are plinked before screen time is allowed. Probably that.
At a quick glance, I can see that Orange Boy has not practised piano, finished homework or put away his laundry yet.
Create Bonus Clothespins
Those few leftover clothespins that did not get painted will serve a purpose with unlimited options. You can assign 1 daily task to each child and put it beside their painted pins. So they know they need to do their daily coloured task PLUS 1 extra task of Mom’s choice.
Or it could be an empty clothespin that means, “Ask if there is anything I can do to help?” after dinner time.
The possibilities are endless.
Orange Boy just begged me to let him close his eyes and randomly select his extra job for tomorrow, which is another great idea.
Really hope he gets the one on the far right. I am not above assigning “Hug Your Mom” as a chore. Desperate times and all that…
In less than half an hour you can have a chore system created. And if you would prefer to skip the painting step, you could also use washi tape to personalize the pins.
Due to my excitment over creating this clothespin chore system, I had to post this right away. It has not even been tested. But I know it will work. So I’ll post the successful results on the Lightly Frayed facebook page in the next few days. There’s that optimism brimming over again.
Hope it’s not just the paint fumes.
What chore systems have worked for your family? Share this simple tool with other parents?