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Isn’t it wonderful to have women in our life who go before us and leave a trail? I feel like it’s what Paul was talking about when he wrote his instructions in Titus 2 for the older women. We need that sometimes, don’t we?
I have always looked to those who were just ahead of me, with kids a bit older, for parenting help. Don’t we all?
Ideas. Strategies. Possibilities.
A lot of times it had to do with expectations for my children. I would hear a friend talking about what chores her child was doing, and would think, “hmmmm, I wonder if my boys could be doing that?”
I had a “hmmmmm” moment when my sister told me that she had her kids doing their own laundry in elementary school.
I don’t hate doing laundry. However, I started thinking about my sister’s system when the sock situation began.
When you have two boys who are close in age and size, you buy one kind of socks and split them up. Laundry should be easy, right? Just split the clean socks up between the two boys.
Well, not so much. When one boy has a habit of wearing socks upside down, creating socks that are dirty on both the top and bottom, as well as oddly stretched…the other boy complains. Can you blame him?
And thus began the laundry lessons.
Are you thinking of teaching your kids to do laundry? I think my boys were in 5th and 7th grades when we made the switch. And oh how I wish I’d have shown them earlier.
I showed them how to sort, add laundry detergent, set the washer and dryer and fold.
Have your kids watch you do a load first, while you describe what you’re doing and show them where everything is. Then, have them each try a load on their own, while you watch them. After that, they should be good to go!
I did make a point to notice when their hampers were getting full and remind them it was time to do a load.
Aside from one incident, it’s been smooth sailing.
The incident being a boy coming to me saying, “Hey mom, we were out of laundry soap so I just used the stuff in the white bottle. Is that OK?” (In case you can’t guess, it was the upside down sock kid who said this). One load of bleach-spotted clothes later…lesson learned.
Now that they’re in high school, I don’t even have to remind them to do their laundry. It’s the best thing ever.
Color Coded Towels
Right about the time we made the laundry switch, we made a bathroom towel switch as well.
Having matching towels is nice, but what is not nice is reaching for your towel and finding it wet because they all look the same and someone used yours. Ick!
Easy fix, though.
Pick out coordinating, but different, colors for each member of your family. Buy two of each color.
Each person has “their” color, so there’s no mix-ups. And you have a spare to swap when you wash them.
Even though my kids do their own laundry, I take still care of the towels.
Besides making my life easier, doing laundry lessons with my kids has prepared them for the future. And now that we’re coming up on the season of life where I have to consider them leaving home, it feels good to know that I’ve equipped them with a skill that they need.
What kinds of chores did you have your kids doing at various ages?
Let’s leave a trail for the mom’s in our wake.