It's a hard-knock life

I don't what I did to deserve this, but my kids love helping me clean. (Actually, I kind of like cleaning too. Not all the time, but often. So I don't usually have a problem acting cheerful about it, especially since we moved into this house; there's something I just like about knowing that no one else's dirt has been in here. Only our own dirt [which is ample]. [Speaking of ample, doesn't that hymn "Lean on my ample arm" sort of bother you? Not that I don't agree with the sentiment, but 'ample' just doesn't seem like a good description of God's arm. A sturdy German housewife, yes.])

The boys do have their own chores, and they'll do those if reminded, but I'm talking about helping me with the "grownup" things. And I've been sort of sneaky about how I treat it (cleaning). I act like I'm really reluctant to give it up, like I'll preface it by saying, "I think you are getting old enough to do this, so I guess I'll let you give it a try just this once," or I'll say excitedly, "Guess what I'm going to do today??! Well, I'm going to clean the counters, and if you guys are good, I will let you help." I don't know if they're just not smart enough to see through it or what, but they will say to me, "Can we sweep the floor today Mommy?" or "Can we wash the tables?" And often I'll reply, "Well . . . I don't know . . . maybe I should just do it after you go to bed." "No, no, we want to help you!!" "Well . . . all right, but you have to do exactly what I say."

It takes longer with them helping, but honestly, give them a rag and a spray bottle and they are happy to help forever! Then of course when we're done I make a big fuss over it all ("WOW! Doesn't this look great? I LOVE having such a clean floor! Can you believe how good it looks? We'll have to show Daddy! Let's take a picture!" etc. etc.) and say, "You guys did such a good job, maybe I'll let you help me again next time!"

I was thinking today, as I was walking around the floor pointing out dirty spots with my toe and the boys were scrubbing them off, that they reminded me of those poor little orphans in "Annie." Except my boys are more serious about it. Didn't those girls always look like they were having too much fun during their chores?

I could get used to having all this slave labor. (Can't wait to add Malachi to the work crew!)

1 comment

  1. This is brilliant. You're a regular ol' Tom Sawyer.


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