Wednesday, November 10, 2010

November 9: Dining Room

Tuesday was not a stellar day for accomplishing anything around the house. The dining room at the end of the day looked no better and possibly even a little worse than it did at the beginning of the day. This journey of getting my house in decent order has really been a struggle for me.

Unfortunately my daughter has some of the same tendencies I have when it comes to cleaning. If I tell her to pick up her toys, she tells me, "It's too much. I can't do it." The child is overwhelmed. I know that feeling all too well. I look at the mess around the house and think, "It's too much. I can't do it." I try to turn off the inner voice in my head saying that, but it doesn't work very well.

For Zoe what has worked is to assign her very, very specific tasks. We call them her "missions". Some examples:

  • Pick up ten toys.
  • In one minute, find as many crayons as you can and put them in the box.
  • Take this one item and put it away.
The last one is one we've been using frequently when working on specific rooms. I hand her something that is in the room that is not supposed to be in that room, and she takes it to the correct room. We both get more accomplished working together as a team than working by ourselves.

So, since yesterday's dining room mission was unsuccessful, we've started tackling it today. Zoe's out on a walk with Joel, and when she gets back we'll work some more. Then we'll tackle the kids' room since that is today's assigned room, even if we only do it for 10-15 minutes.


  1. I get this same way and have to break things down into small, specific tasks. Either that, or I have to limit it to 10 minute bursts of work.

  2. I work the same way. I love getting missions. :) I can't look at my kitchen and just go in there and "clean the kitchen". I nearly go into a panic attack thinking about it. I go in and "wash the dishes". Then I can clean off the stove. I also enjoy using the timer (thank you Flylady).

    I'm hoping to accomplish something today after a couple of days of total backslide.