Project 52 – Week 8

She’s just earning her keep. Train them early!


I was that kid that old folks talk about. You know the one where it is a darn shame that they weren’t made to do any chores or housecleaning. Just sitting around living and sucking up air. That was me.

My mother never made me clean, consistently at least. She would every now and then go “ham” about how I kept my room but as far as washing dishes, cleaning bathrooms, sorting laundry etc. I was never made to do such. Don’t ask me why, because I don’t know and she isn’t here for me to ask.

While it was lovely as a child I found it hard to adjust as a wife. I still struggle with some things. Things related to keeping a house that may come natural to others come as a post it note ( a la Being Mary Jane style) on my refrigerator, car etc. as a reminder that I have to do certain things.

I don’t want to cripple my children so they are being introduced early to the art of doing chores. My son has become quite efficient at cleaning the kitchen in the evenings and she is such a help when it comes to taking clothes out of the dryer and placing them in the basket.

What great lessons my children are learning. while doing the tasks that I don’t want to do.

Do you make your children do chores? At what age did they start?

About the author
Mom, wife and friend. I moonlight as a cooker, baker, laundry folder and organizer. I like to think I do it in style. Unlikely Martha is my contribution to the internet in helping women "Keep House and Stay Fly!"


  1. Yes they should have chores. When? As soon as they start making messes! Jas has been cleaning up behind herself since forever. She’s been trained from jump and I think that’s how it should be.

  2. My son cleans the kitchen, places dishes in the dishwasher, empties the dishwasher, sweeps the floors and cleans the bathroom. My daughter takes out the trash, sweeps her room and wipes down the glass/mirrors and dusts.

  3. Pookah’s chore is to clean up his toys and to always put his plate and cup in the sink after he eats. I’m not as consistent as I would like about the toys, but I am about cleaning up the table! My mother was fanatical about chores. Dishes bathrooms, kitchens, bedrooms clothes. I was her personal
    Maid. Lol

  4. I didn’t have heavy chores, keep my room clean and trim the hedges in the yard was about it and this is probably why I hate doing indoor work lol (ie. dishes and bathrooms?? ::gag::) Chunks has to put away his toys and putting the dishes in the sink but he loves cleaning mirrors and wiping the tables for some reason so hey, knock yourself out! Lol
    Candace recently posted..My 5 Year NYC Anniversary

  5. So great to teach them young. I was so clueless about taking care of myself when I left for college I had to find friends to show me how to wash clothes etc. *gives myself the major side eye. It is better to grow up knowing than feel crazy when u leave home lol 🙂
    Law_Fal recently posted..God’s Timing……….

  6. That’s funny she would tell people you did it.

    We’re working on it here. One day I just said I’m not folding their clothes any more. I’ll wash them (mostly because it’s a tiny laundry room and there is so much going on in there), but they have to fold them. Took them about 4 hours today to fold and put away two loads. Maybe one day they will be faster. On the upside…they didn’t complain:)
    Krystyn @ Really, Are You Serious? recently posted..B is 2 months old

  7. Our little guy is quite a helper. I don’t really think of them as chores so much as just helping with family stuff. He throws away his trash, picks up his toys, and puts his dishes on the kitchen counter ( he’s not tall enough to put them in the sink without breaking). He also helps me put clothes in the washing machine on laundry day. He loves all of it, though. It makes him feel accomplished. And I know that when he grows up he’ll already have these skills. It’s a win/win.
    Brandyne recently posted..Something New

  8. I had chores growing up: clean my room, my bathroom, wash dishes/clothes, dusting furniture. I guess cleaning my room/toys started at a young age and then as I got older, the list got longer. When my mom died and it was just me and my dad, so I did grocery shopping, cooking, etc.
    I knew I wanted RJ to have responsibilities around the house. My husband had some growing up, but not a lot. RJ has to put up his toys and put his dirty clothes in the hamper. However, he really enjoys helping out and he likes to take clothes out of the dryer, help clean windows, unload the dishwasher, etc. So, I’m going to ride this wave and keep him on that path.
    Jenni recently posted..So Random

  9. Growing up, we didn’t do chores either, and it was a huge adjustment doing it for my own household! Granted, I did keep my room looking awesome, but still it’s a big adjustment taking care of…well everyone!

    Like you, I don’t want my children to fall into that trap, so my daughter has been started on the chores (she can fold a towel perfectly) but we’ll work on up as she is able to do more things.

    The best thing about it, is informing them that if we work together to get things done, then we all have more time to do the things we love.
    KalleyC recently posted..Blogging A.D.D.

  10. Yes, my children have chores although I should probably make them do them more regularly. My daughter LOVES washing the dishes so getting her to help out when I am beyond exhausted was a breeze. My son LOVES to play with our swiffer mop and so he handles the floor. Just recently, I told my son he couldn’t rake a bigger pile of leaves than I could – he raked his little heart out. LOL!

    I had chores when I was little that I had to complete on the weekends and we had a week to wash dishes. I don’t think I’ll give my children as many this early, but it has definitely helped me be more responsible in keeping a home and more responsible altogether.
    Carla recently posted..Still..

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