Knowing that I'm going to be swamped when I go back to work full-time next week, we had a family meeting. We talked over what it would take to make it work. Since we were pretty successful with 10 kids here, we discussed what we had done differently that helped make that week easier.
- woke up early and got dressed right away
- ate breakfast together
- everyone cleared and washed their own dishes (from 2 years and up)
- wiped the table right away
- kept the toys to a minimum and put them away constantly
- swept and vacuumed daily
- did dishes after every meal (every meal made a full dishwasher load)
- no t.v. or movies after dinner
- played for an hour after dinner then had scriptures and prayer
- read little ones to sleep
So we decided to continue those habits and split the daily jobs up fairly. Since none of us like doing the same job every day for a week, we have a revolving chore chart. Each of the older kids has two or three jobs daily (empty dishwasher, sweep, vac, trash, water, fill dw, cook, laundry, etc.) Every day they change though, so they don't have to get into a rut.
The best part though, is the cooking. I really assigned it, so they could help with the cooking. However, they all want to cook all three meals themselves. The first day Arthur cooked all three meals. Calvin was planning his meals ahead, and woke up at 7 am to make everyone waffles! He had a stir fry and rice all planned out for dinner tonight. They are lovin' this!
I have always shied away from chore charts, since I am not one to enforce that kind of structure (making me appear lax when it all goes out the window after a week or two). So I am thrilled that they have taken on these responsibilities so willingly. Man, I have great kids!