Re-establishing Daily Routine

January 29th, 2010

518984_a_little_girl_saying_good_night_1The holidays have come and gone. If you're anything like me, I'm still not back to my normal routine. I feel that I'm almost there, but not quite. It's hard to wrap my head around a whole new year, and the fact that my vacation is over. Reality is calling, and I'm trying not to answer. Chances are you and your children may be experiencing the same thing. The holidays were a busy time of year. It was filled with get-togethers, obscenely early shopping trips, delicious sugary treats, and time off of work and school. It was a time of year to be enjoyed and cherished. But once it's over, it's time to get back to your daily routine. While it may be… [more]

Household Chores and Developmental Delays

January 12th, 2010

Household Chores with Developmental DelaysOur Beauty is inching up on her third birthday (just over two months to go) and we've started a new addition to her daily schedule: a household chore. Some may argue that almost-three is too young to be helping around the house, while others believe that assisting with household duties should start as soon as a child is old enough to walk and talk. Bear has been "helping" around the house for as long as I can remember. He helps me dust (with a clean, dry cloth), he helps me feed and consequently let out the dog, he helps me sort laundry and he puts away all the silverware (sans knives of any sort, of course) after it… [more]

Areas of Responsibility

February 7th, 2008

For so long, my daughter took on the personal responsibility of ensuring her younger brother was safe. She’s a total “protector” and has been in “full mama mode” for some time now. For children who are used to “being in charge,” it’s hard to let go once they are in the safe confines of an adoptive family. My daughter routinely goes beyond whatever instructions I give her. If I ask her to put her dishes in the sink and rinse them with water, she will wash them with lots and lots of dish soap. Not a huge deal, unless it makes a big mess that I then have to clean up, which is at issue here! I don’t want to see her self-esteem crushed, and… [more]

Tips for Organization

February 6th, 2008
Categories: Chores, Routines

Because of my own ADD, organization is not my strong suit. Though I have yet to master organization, I’ve discovered some key pieces that certainly make life easier! Master Calendar: My cell phone is actually one of those pocket PCs, so I have e-mail, MS Word and Excel, plus calendaring and contacts all in one place. The down side to this is that it is my brain, so if I misplace it, I’m done for. However, I sync it with my computer so that I have a back up. The nice thing is, I can print out labels from my address book for cards, etc., and don’t have to do the extra legwork. If you don’t have or don’t want a souped… [more]

Discipline and Adopted Child: Chores & Allowance

October 24th, 2007
Categories: Chores

Giving a school-age child chores and an allowance is an effective way to teach a child responsibility and discipline. The concept of chores might be foreign to some older adopted children while, to others, having responsibility around the house is second nature. For a child who was made responsible for age-inappropriate tasks before his adoption, he will have the opportunity to shine doing more age-appropriate tasks. Also, earning an allowance is a perk to just about any child, whether adopted or not.

Opinions vary on the topic of chores and allowance. Some people believe that these two things should be connected so the child learns how to earn money. Other people believe that the two should not be connected because a child should contribute to the… [more]

Tidy Tasks – Fun Ideas with Paper Motivators

June 6th, 2007
Categories: Chores

gumballsSummer time is here. We'll do some fun things. More often, we'll be doing a lot more of routine, dull things around the house. The kids are obviously thrilled about this! Okay. So perhaps they aren't so thrilled. I am always on the lookout for new ideas to keep us all motivated. At our house, these are called "Tidy Tasks". With many adopted children at various places on the road to attachment and family belonging, their responses to helping with home and family aren't always predictable. I keep a lot of ideas ready so that I can vary them as needed. Whenever one idea looses the fun or when one just isn't working for a… [more]

Tidy Tasks – Keeping Things Fun

June 5th, 2007
Categories: Chores

ticketsNew Tidy Task ideas are not for routine, daily chores, but designed for extra chores and/or extra fun to add a boost to the monotony of daily chores. They also can add fun to a family while doing things that really are pretty mundane. Parents, particularly adoptive parents, should remember that children want to become a part of something fun. A child won’t want to become a part of something boring and difficult. Children seek to be included and find a sense of belonging in things that are positive, happy or fun. When we think about our adopted children forming bonds of attachment, it’s important for us to remember to have fun and to have fun together with our children… [more]

Tidy Tasks – Using a Cycle Chart

June 4th, 2007
Categories: Chores

cycleTidy Tasks are fun ways to motivate our children to help with house chores. Two previous blogs mentioned some fun ideas. One blog introduced Box o’ Socks, “Stop, Drop and Clean”. Another blog gave a lot of ideas for fun charts to use. Using a cycle chart is another fun way to keep kids interested in otherwise mundane tasks, learning responsibility, and seeking to reinforce an adopted child’s place as a needed and appreciated part of the family. On a piece of paper or a dry-erase board, draw a “cycle”. Create a circle with four evenly spaced breaks at the top, bottom and two sides. At each break, write in an activity for a total of… [more]

Tidy Tasks: Using Fun Charts

June 4th, 2007
Categories: Chores

chorechartEvery mom wonders, at one point or another, how to motivate a child to help with taking care of the house. We all know it’s not only about the actual doing of the chores. Gosh, in most cases, it’s a whole lot easier for a mom to do the chore than it is to teach the child how to do it and to follow up on that. Worrying over chores is far more about teaching the child responsibility, personal care, and, eventually, how to live on his own. In adoptive homes, there is an extra aspect to consider that presents even more importance to helping our children through the good and bad of chores. For adopted children, they may… [more]

How to Get Kids to Help Using “Tidy Tasks”

June 2nd, 2007
Categories: Chores

tidy With kids coming home for summer, how can we keep our homes from getting out of hand? Mix things up! Tidy tasks is a phrase that I use to encompass all sorts of fun, easy and novel ideas for keeping kids motivated to help keep our house looking nice. With a house full of children, keeping things fun is one key for keeping things successful at the same time. We pick ideas that sound like they might help get the job done while keeping levity at the same time. Who likes to do chores anyway? Most kids don’t. Take kids with behavior problems, emotional disorders, or just tough backgrounds, and reality says that chores are just not… [more]