Sunday, November 09, 2008

On your mark....

How is it that we can clean the house, and within 15 minutes of releasing the things to playtime, its a mess again? Seriously? Do they not get it? Make a little mess, clean it up, and then make another little mess. Do you see my key word? Too bad I can't speak in italics, right?

Yesterday I "grounded" the girls until they're "wing" of the house was clean. That includes a bedroom, playroom and bathroom. I didn't necessarily want them to sanitize the bathroom (though it would have been nice), but they're capable (at 8 & almost 5) of wiping off the counter, emptying trash, and making sure things are put away. Oh, and replacing an empty roll of T.P. every now and then would be fantastic! Surprisingly, they cleaned their designated areas and we went on with our weekend.

This afternoon I asked them to "race" me in tidying up the house before DH landed back in the metroplex. They were to tidy the playroom while I cleaned the kitchen. And I thought this was reasonable, considering they've only had a few hours to "wreck" it again. And I was cleaning...dishes, wiping down counters/table/cabinet doors, sweeping and mopping...my task was a little more daunting (so it would seem) than theirs. We frequently race in an effort to get Thing2 to help us. She isn't a cleaner-upper...ever...even when she promises. <>

Wouldn't you know, I finished the kitchen and crept down the hall to find out what they were up to. They were *almost* done with the playroom, and the bedroom wasn't too bad (dirty jammies on the floor and bed making were the only real tasks in there). To encourage a little, I promised them a candy from their t-or-t buckets...and that was all it took! Within minutes they were done and chowing down on their sweet reward...

...and that made me think: have I changed my stance on bribing since becoming a parent? Yep! Most of the time a sweet treat is all the reward I need, too!

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