I think it is time to make a household cleanliness chart (aka: chores to be done, but I hate the word 'chores' so household cleanliness it is!) Or should it be called responsibilities? That word, even though it shouldn't, has bad connotations as well. Chores, responsibilities, duties, jobs... all these words put a frown on even the most stalwart of countenances. I've tried to talk with the family about what a joy it can be to keep the house clean, to honor each other as being important enough to keep it clean for. But its hard when I have trouble finding joy in the jobs myself.
Colossians 3:23 - Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. (NIV)
We're sporadic cleaners. No, the health police can't be called in but we don't always get to the dishes TODAY and the laundry is usually in piles to rival the Rocky Mountains. Having too many clothes is a known side effect of shopping at thrift stores most of the time. Our sporadic cleaning changes into organized spring/fall cleaning when we plan to have someone come over. I really don't mind these behemoth cleaning efforts because everything gets done. Then when its over I'm always lamenting, 'Why are we comfortable living with cobwebs, or never seeing the light of day on the children's floors, and oh how nice it is to have clothes in our DRAWERS instead of living out of baskets."
I can't complain about overstuffed schedules and responsibilities and never being home to get anything done. We're always home. I don't over schedule us. Evenings are spent on the computers/TV, reading books, art time or playing games. It's laziness pure and simple. It's about time to work in regular cleanliness.
Proverbs 12:24 - The diligent find freedom in their work; the lazy are oppressed by work. (The Message)
The girls and I had a nice talk the other night about being responsible. I had them both make lists of things they could/need to be responsible for without being asked. I've grown tired of telling the little one: brush your teeth, change the fish tank, take a shower, pick up the living room. Or telling the teen: do laundry, take your medicine/vitamins, shouldn't you be studying, time to find a job... So far I have only seen a glimpse of them taking on their responsibilities. So far I have not figured out how to instill in them the WANT to do these things for the good of the family. Working on it...
The little one and I are reading Everyday Graces. It really is a nice gentle way to discuss not only manners but responsibilities. We've been reading the chapter on Helping Out At Home. The poem called 'Why Do I Have To Clean My Room?' by Jack Prelutsky is funny and very pertinent. I'm hoping this book will help us, especially with the attitude about cleaning, manners and cleanliness in general.
Okay, so here goes. I don't know what is best to put on what days and I don't know if I should be including the responsibilities the kids have on their lists but I'm just gonna wing it. I've kept Sunday clear because its Sunday and I've left minimal things for Wednesday since the little one and dh have to be at church by 515 pm.
Sunday: Day of rest, just keep up with the day's dishes/kitchen
Monday: Dishes/kitchen, 1 load laundry/wash dry, clean living room, fold/put away clothes
Tuesday: Dishes/kitchen, 1 load laundry/wash dry, clean bathrooms, clean dining room
Wednesday: Dishes/kitchen, 1 load laundry/wash dry, sweep all floors, dust all electronics
Thursday: Dishes/kitchen, 1 load laundry/wash dry, clean living room, mop tiles/floors, clean bedrooms
Friday: Dishes/kitchen, 1 load laundry/wash dry, change kitty litter, change sheets, fold/put away clothes
Saturday: Dishes/kitchen, 2 loads laundry/wash dry. Sweep all floors if necessary. Cook the majority of the week's meat. Get DH's clothes ready for the week.