My girls have 3 chores. 1) Make your own bed.  2) Pick up your own toys before leaving the house and/or going to bed.  3) Help empty the dishwasher.  We also ask them to set the table, help fold the laundry by doing socks and towels and easy to fold items, and generally clean up after themselves.

This morning I was getting dressed and the girls were making their beds, together.  Big sis helping Little sis.  And I hear my little girl start singing, and I am not lying here, “It’s a Hard Knock Life” from Annie.  I guess I should be thankful that it wasn’t the Jay-Z version?



Seriously?  Thanks girls.

But seriously, chores are a good thing.  We don’t have a cleaning service, I work upwards of 50 hours a week, the Coach is pushing 80 hours regularly.  Stuff doesn’t just magically get done around here, and it’s going to take all of us to pitch in.  What age did your kids start doing chores?  What are some good starter chores?  Do you reward them with allowance?  We don’t pay for chores – but if they do a nice job and don’t whine I may give them a “coin” for their banks – they don’t care what coin, they just like the sound it makes.

Or do you think I’m just one step away from warbling “Little girls…” and knocking back a bottle of the hooch?  Be honest.  And when you read my upcoming housecleaning (with wine) post, you might change your mind. 



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Also a transplant to New Jersey and Mercer County, Merritt McGlynn is walking a tightrope between career woman and devoted mother: hanging on for dear life with her dishpan hands. Merritt is a mom to two of the most adorable children in Jersey: a darling and spunky 4-year-old and a certifiably insane but heart-melting almost-3-year-old. Married to the always-working "Coach", Merritt tries to maintain some appearance of a work-life balance, and often finds that the scales are usually tipped in one direction or the other - but she’s still trying! In her spare time, if she ever gets any, Merritt would like to read books, travel with her husband, drink margaritas on the deck, and one day, if she’s really lucky, enjoy a phone conversation without interruptions. For now, she’ll settle for 20 minutes of an Audrey Hepburn movie and a diet coke.


  1. Good for you! Chase has always fed the dog and filled the water bowl… since he could walk! haha.
    He helps to load the dishwaher after dinner and has to clean up toys before bed. He is also in charge of putting his and Whitney’s clothes in the hamper at bath time/PJs.

    • That’s a good one for pet owners too! I’m pretty fanatical about the dirty laundry, but don’t consider it a chore, because, ladies, the laundry basket is 18 inches to the left. Charlie is actually pretty good about it. Now we’re working on the concept of – when taking off your clothes, treat each piece like a seperate item because underwear and socks trapped in leggings does not make a happy mommy.