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Discussion Starter #1
Mamas - are there any AP mamas of a large family out there?<br><br>
I'm struggling a bit with the chore issue - as you know when you have lots of kiddos & they are home all day (unschooling) the mess in the house can get really bad FAST. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> My children help with all aspects of cleaning up the messes they make, and sometimes it feels like all they're doing is chores. We've got chores inside as well as outside with the animals. Overall, I feel that working & helping is going to benefit them greatly, but sometimes I worry that all they'll remember are the chores!<br><br>
Any other mamas experiencing this?
 

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I only have four kids, but we are home all day and have that mess, too. Ugh. My kids do have chores, but it's not like they take ALL day. Since they're home, not at school, they have plenty of time to play and read and fight, etc. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Are you worried that you are asking them to do too much? I'll tell you what mine do:<br><br><b>12-year old twins</b><br>
(they take turns for these chores)<br>
all dishwashing<br>
set table (they are teaching the 5-year old how to do it)<br>
take out trash & recycles<br>
clean their rooms<br>
clean their bathroom<br>
vacuum stairs and all of upstairs<br>
wash & put away their own laundry<br>
watch the baby while I am making dinner<br>
help pick up toys once a day<br><br><b>5-year old</b> (well, 5 next week)<br>
learning how to set table<br>
helps fold laundry<br>
puts away his own laundry<br>
cleans spots on kitchen floor<br>
wipes down windowsills with damp rag (he LOVES to do these two)<br>
helps pick up toys<br>
dusts stair bannisters<br><br>
Uhhh, I think that's it. The baby just MAKES messes.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes, I guess truthfully there is a part of me that worries that I am expecting too much of them. I don't always feel this way, but sometimes it nags at me. I do not know too many women who have large families.....especially ones who AP AND homeschool/unschool. Typically their children are gone all day at school....whereas mine are right at home with me. I want it this way! But as you know all too well, the mess is absolutely HUGE. I can't really compare our family to the families I know who just have a child or two.....many families I know hire out the work (a cleaning woman, lawn care, etc) and so their time is spent NOT doing any chores.<br><br>
My children seem to have a similar chore level as yours. Maybe a little more due to the animals outside (we live on a farm). They are responsible for cleaning up toys, vaccuming, doing dishes (we do not have a dishwasher) - which is a large responsibility, helping with laundry, taking out recycling, sweeping the kitchen floor, washing the table, and feeding goats, llamas, chickens, & cats. Then depending on the season, there is other animal work to be done & gardening. When I write it all out it seems like a lot.....but it TAKES a lot of work to keep our big family functioning.<br><br>
Combined with the normal things needed for kids like eating, meal preparation, brushing their teeth, etc....the days get full really fast. I think what gets me the most is that many, many days.....I am battling with them to get the work done. I guess when I really think about it, I am glad that my kids are learning how to work hard and what it takes to make a home work.....but I want to make sure there is enough time for everything else.
 

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i'm at home with my 4 kids. we also unschool. i haven't figured out how to control the mess too much but one of the biggest helps has been to get rid of as much stuff as i can. they are responsible for the pet chores, and the dishwasher and their rooms (okay, that really doesn't always happen).
 

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I'm there. Sometimes my children think that all I make them do is work. And at times it really seems like it.<br><br>
But like you said, it can get so messy SO fast. We will have everything cleaned up after supper (and children tucked into bed), then before I wake up in the morning, it looks like a tornado hit! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:
 

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I'm feeling that way especially lately, because we have a pretty fussy newborn. I just don't have two hands, almost all day. Right now he's draped over my shoulder asleep so I can type wtih two hands, yay!<br><br>
my bigger boys are 9 and 11, and they do this:<br>
put away clean dishes<br>
clean their rooms<br>
11yo does his laundry<br>
periodic vacuuming<br>
clean their bathroom<br>
clean up toy messes from the 2yo<br>
occasionally sweep the floor<br>
set the table<br><br>
They only have about 2 jobs that they do EVERY day, but I often ask for extra help here and there.
 

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I don't know why anyone feels guilty for teaching their children to work as a family and care for their home. They make the messes~they should clean them up. They have animals~they should be caring for the animals. I mean, sure, if you have a 20 mile long list of heavy chores like scrubbing the floors with a toothbrush or hanging 10 loads of laundry a day, fine. I can see that might be way too much. But, to have daily chores to keep the home basically clean and tidy, there is not one thing wrong with that.<br><br>
I am starting back to college after 17 years. My husband is fully aware that I cannot do fulltime college and EVERYTHING else. So, everyone is pitching in.<br><br>
My older boys are 7 and 8. They can make their beds, dust their rooms and dust mop their floors. They also can set the table, clear the table and my 8 yr old can sweep the floor. They pick up toys and help their 1 yr old brother with picking up his messes. They also will get a load of clothes from the dryer and will take dirty laundry to the laundry room. They put away their folded laundry. My oldest is going to start loading the dishwasher very soon. (we are installing it in a couple of weeks)<br><br>
I absolutely refuse to be one of those mothers, a few of whom I know personally, who wait on sons hand and foot. Who think that having a penis renders one unable to do anything in the home.<br><br>
I do not believe children should be running the home and the parents do nothing. But, I fully believe that instilling a good work ethic and teaching children to work as a family and learn to care for their things and their home, is a good thing.
 

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TB, I totally agree! It's not a rational thing - I know intellectually they are fine and not over-burdened, but sometimes it just gets hard to keep asking. They do a lot of moaning and groaning, yk?<br><br>
Btw, is there a tribe in FYT for large families? Does 4 kids count?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
My kids do a lot of moaning & groaning about it too!<br><br>
I think it's difficult for my friends who have smaller families to understand. I wouldn't get it either if I'd stopped having kids at two or three. Having the six kids I do creates a mess I could never have imagined. I don't know how they do it but EVERYTHING is messier....the bathrooms, the livingroom, and the worst area - the kitchen! And I make them clean everything up that they create.<br><br>
I guess I just get tired of having to be on them about it. I feel like a drill sergeant.<br><br>
I'd love a forum for mamas with large families.......I don't know many mothers who AP AND raise a lot of kids.
 

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Just piggybacking.. I only have 3 (so far!) but I have alway swondered why there isn't a "Tons of Kids" type forum (titled ganked from previously cool parentsplace)<br><br>
Namaste, Tara
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mama in the forest</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">My kids do a lot of moaning & groaning about it too!<br><br>
I think it's difficult for my friends who have smaller families to understand. I wouldn't get it either if I'd stopped having kids at two or three. Having the six kids I do creates a mess I could never have imagined. I don't know how they do it but EVERYTHING is messier....the bathrooms, the livingroom, and the worst area - the kitchen! And I make them clean everything up that they create.<br><br>
I guess I just get tired of having to be on them about it. I feel like a drill sergeant.<br><br>
I'd love a forum for mamas with large families.......I don't know many mothers who AP AND raise a lot of kids.</div>
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</tr></table></div>
<br>
I have 3 kids and will have no more. Not a large family, but still, somedays it seems as messy as if I have 14 kids.
 

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i would also like ot know how to stop the repeatedly telling my kids to clean up. my 9yr old ds is the WORST. i have to tell him directly, to his face, at least 4-5 times before he does it. how hard is it to do it the first ... or second time for that matter ?<br>
my favorite line is ... well, i didn't do it!!! arggg!!! i clean up many things i didn't do <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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mandi, same with my 9yo. Sometimes I need to walk him to the mess and stand there. His "help" is not very helpful in those cases, but I can't just do it for him, right?<br><br>
Right!
 

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My eight year old helps out a lot with her brother... Right now she is giving him a bath... And my family does not like it, they all tell me to remember how my mom was with me (another story, and she isn't treated like that at all!)<br>
I think its important for kids to have some chores, moms are not maids... And she is so proud when she has done something herself!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
My 9 year old son's the hardest too. Sometimes I have to tell him twenty times before he gets a chore done. And he cries, yells, & throws a fit about it. I'm not excusing him from it just because he acts up though....he's gotta do his share just like the other kids. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/banghead.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="banghead">
 

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As someone who is an only child and was raised with a maid who totally picked up after me at every step...<br><br>
I think it's GOOD to teach kids chores and responsibilities. It doesn't mean they'll like it. I have 3 kids, 3.5yo twin boys and a 1.5yo girl. The boys do a little bit: they'll move the laundry to the dryer (with supervision), put away their own clothes, and clean up toys. Anyway, I just talk about cooperation and we're part of a team, blah blah, but they're still pretty easily brainwashed, being so young. I'm sure when they're older it will be a little more difficult.<br><br>
By the way, I didn't learn to do laundry, vacuum, dishes, etc, til I went to college. What a nightmare that was. Will not repeat that parenting style.
 
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