Kids Chores a serendipitous encounter

A Serendipitous Encounter

The longest holiday break of the year has arrived! Kids are visiting grandma and we, the parents, finally have the much needed break from ‘family life’. Mom can sleep in and dad can prepare for work at a leisurely pace.

oh no

The sobering reality is, it is all but happening –  we have to take over the kids chores! What were their chores are now our duties; and we are to be blamed if it is not done. I can just picture myself trying to explain to my husband why the bed never got made! I do not want a throwback moment to my teenage years in my forties!

Dad’s new duties AKA son’s chores:

  • Feed the dogs
  • Clean up their mess
  • Take the rubbish out
  • Vacuum the cars
  • Clean the bathroom.

Mum’s new duties AKA daughter’s chores:

  • Do the dreaded dishes day and night
  • Dust the furniture
  • Sweep the stoep
  • Assist with laundry
  • Help with meal preparation.
I realised this when we suddenly had an increase in duties; a number of things had to be done before we could leave for work! The anti-climax of  a well deserved break from the kids turned into me having to groom our three spoilt cross breed Labradors.
This immediately made me need and appreciate the many tiny ways in which our children contribute to the well-being of the family and our pets.
Though, it is often done through much trial and error, they certainly bring their fair share. I cannot but swell with pride when I think about how far we have come over the past 13 years.
I admire their growing independence and  watch with awe as they grow more responsible every other day, because the learning process has good and bad days. We still fight over their biggest distraction, the television, which leads them to cheating on their chores, but at least they understand that it has to be done, one way or the other!

Priceless things that kids should learn to do:

  • Make their own beds
  • Clean up their rooms
  • Wash and iron school uniforms
  • Prepare their own lunches
  • Make tea/ coffee/ warm drink
  • Prepare a simple meal.
This helps them to become responsible for their own space and to take care of their own basic needs. It is also a blessing for all those who get to share a living space with our children in future.
When our children are praised by family and friends for their conduct and behaviour; we ,as their parents, certainly feel accomplished and appreciate the fact that our efforts to raise them are recognised.
Parenting is much like planting in virgin soil, you seldom know how big or small your harvest will be.
All, you can do is water, fertilise and wait! And, forgive ourselves if we planted a seed out of season or the harvest does not meet our expectations. That should not keep us from continuing in our quest to build strong independent children.

Mum and dad’s holiday expectations, included the following, unattainables:

  • Long, romantic dinners
  • Sipping exotic cocktails in secluded corners of upmarket bars
  • Late night shopping
  • Relaxed evenings in front of the television
  • Unwinding from the rat race
  • Redefining ‘chill’
  • Cuddling
  • Spoiling each other with foot rubs,etc.
  • Review the past year
  • Planning for the new year.

Thea Mendlula

The reality of our situation is:

  • We get up at 05:00 for our morning run
  • We have only managed to go out once
  • Supper has migrated to slapdash level
  • We are too tired to concentrate for longer than 30 minutes; as a result the television is more off than on
  • We have been forced to drink water on account of the heat
  • We are avoiding the mad rush of shopping at packed malls
  • Our daily duties have mysteriously increased
  • Year end work obligations drew every spare drop of energy from us
  • Romance is still loading…
  • We collapse from exhaustion rather than unwind!

Our ‘break’ in hindsight:

Our home alone and childfree time has been a serendipitous encounter. We got to talk about our little people, laugh about their antics, celebrate their craziness, recall conversations and admit to each other that we miss them. We had time to fall inlove with our offspring and escaped the daily pressure of school, homework and exams. The future,that so often looks dim and unsure – in the rush of getting to the end of the year – suddenly appeared brighter as we reflected on what we have accomplished the past 12 months. Yes, we did not quite get to everything we were looking forward to, but it left us no poorer, maybe more appreciative of the journey – whilst realising we were never going to achieve straight A’s for our efforts; but enough to inspire us to be better; do better and dream bigger.
It has been pleasing to realise that being away from them helps us appreciate the blessings which they truly are; and that having them here with us –  makes us whole; gives us purpose and adds to our being as a couple.
It was the summer of 2016, in the most southern point of the African continent that two people, stumbled upon serendipity (the faculty or phemenon of finding valuable or agreeable things not sought for) of parenting.
Love my life!

Guest Post by Thea Drift-Mendlula

Who am l? A forty something year old woman on a quest, playing many roles as I grow.
Cupcakenism is about passion, love, parenting, baking and momism. I share my experiences as wife, mother of three, woman, educator and entrepreneur through words.
Twitter: @cupcakenism
Instagram: _cupcakenism
Facebook: Cupcakenism

What chores do your kids do around the house?

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  1. Nice.
    I remember as a child we would visit my uncle and his wife. They have 3 kids.
    2 boys and 1 girl.
    We would get there on a Sunday then there’s a mountain of dishes to wash…
    My uncle would then tell my niece to go clean the dishes… and she will stand and wash wash wash while her brothers sit and do nothing!
    I told myself that i will never do that to my children… everyone will help! Its unfair to give all the work to one person.

    Today she owns a dishwasher and she said she’ll never forget how she was raised.
    She will not let her 2 girls ever wash dishes. They do other chores but not dishes.

    Its crazy how things in your childhood can affect you as a grown up?!

    • Yes I totally agree with you, our childhoods affect us for life!

      In our house my mom made all of us do chores and there was a roster, so our weekly duties changed. It was good for us!

      • Yes that how I grow up in my house there was no chore for grow up and for boys we all switch turns and it was great

  2. totally agree with this

  3. we all had chores i think…well most of us…im also keeping all this for my son they learn from these things like chores.

    • Yes lisa he must learn at an early stage and later on you will see how he amazing it will be when you don’t have to tell him what’s to do anymore

      • I agree ill be learning him as soon as he understand what is chores and what he must do that how they learnn

  4. For now my son dont have chore,or perhaps he have only to put back his toys when he finished playing with them☺️☺️☺️ his still young for now

  5. Yes everyone must do a. Chores regardless of gender my son is 5 and he understands that when he finished eating his food he must pick up his dishes and puts it’s where it belongs that’s goes for his toys and his clothing he knows that the is no one who going to clean up after him and I believe that the better the learn in the early stages the better

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