Gratituesday: The System

The leftovers have been put away. The dishes are clean. My floor has been swept and mopped. The dishwasher has been unloaded. The table and countertops and window sills and chairs have all been wiped down. 

And I didn’t do any of it.

My wonderful husband (you’ve heard of him, right?) recently implemented a system. It’s a family kitchen cleaning system and I LOVE him…and the system he created.

Of course the boys have always helped out in the kitchen, but we never had any kind of system in place that would keep things fair and organized. More often than not, Matt would rinse the dishes if he was home, then I would find myself doing the majority of the kitchen cleaning because it just seemed faster and easier.

But Matt recognized that I was getting worn out and that we weren’t training our boys enough to serve in our home. He spent some time coming up with a thorough system, typed it up, put it into a plastic sleeve and put it on the fridge. Each morning, we fill in the chart with names of who does what after each meal. Matt and I are included in the rotation, so between the six of us, we can make pretty fast work of kitchen clean up. 

What I’ve been especially thrilled about is how the boys didn’t even question Matt when he showed them the system and walked them through each job expectation. And each time we finish a meal, they just check the chart to see which job they need to do before they leave the kitchen. It’s just…nifty.

The only thing wrong with this system is that we didn’t begin it sooner. It’s working beautifully and I am so grateful that Matt saw the need and took care of it. 

Next up…a Laundry System. :)

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Comments

  1. says

    Goodness gracious! I cannot wait until my babies are old enough to implement a system. That’s the most difficult thing about eating at home in my opinion- cleaning up the mess afterward!

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  2. says

    We’ve had a ‘chore chart’ similar to this for a few years now which shares the jobs evenly between the six children and myself, according to age and ability of course. The hardest thing I find is having to remind people to do their job/chore (and putting up with the complaining that sometimes goes along with it).

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  3. Rhonda says

    I recently came up with a laundry system that I love, because I am a lazy laundry lady. Tuesday through Friday each person in our family is assigned a day to do laundry. The other days are for misc. household laundry or a day of rest. The older the kid, the more responsibility. Laundry day includes stripping the sheets and washing anything else that needs to be cleaned. All clothes are washed in one load, then dried and put in the color coded laundry basket and sent to the person’s room. Some weeks I have enough energy to follow up on the folding/hanging of clothes, but some weeks, my boys dress out of their laundry basket and that’s fine with me. :)

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  4. says

    This is an awesome idea Matt. I will tell my sister about this, she has four kids and is always trying to get them to help out. They have tried chores, tried deligating, nothing seems to work. Maybe if Dad tells them, with his stern voice, they might act on it. I taught my daughter how to do her own laundry when she was about 11 years old. She made herself a list on which cycle to set the washer on, which temp. of water, and hung her directions on the wall beside the washing machine. She has been doing her laundry every since, she is now 16 years old. I just wish she would want to learn how to cook. Any suggestions on getting her in the kitchen?

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    melanie Reply:

    Offer to clean up after her ;-)

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  5. Alison says

    Bravo for your husband’s leadership! I have tried countless systems similar to this, but they never went over very well–probably because I’m single and live with my parents. I think there’s a lot to be said for the head of the house being the initiator.

    And Bravo to your sons! Sounds like they have a wonderful example by which to learn.

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  6. says

    Yes, Please share the details of this system! My sister is in desperate need of some help from her kiddos and hubby… but she’s so exhausted and overwhelmed trying to figure it all out. This would help so much!!

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  7. says

    My favorite part of the whole post

    “But Matt recognized that I was getting worn out and that we weren’t training our boys enough to serve in our home.”

    Awesome work!

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    Rhonda Reply:

    Amen

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    Lisa Reply:

    Ditto! Laura, you are truly blessed by the men in your life!

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    Baking Mama Reply:

    Another “Amen”! I would also like details about your “system”!

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  8. kelly says

    will you post a copy of your sheet that you display on the fridge and give me a few pointers that you used to implement it?

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  9. Heather Eide says

    There are so many systems out there. Could you share yours? It may be very helpful for many families! Thanks!!

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  10. Amber Rogers says

    I do love systems. Concerning laundry, we have 7 children from 11 down to two.Each member of the family has their own laundry hamper. Monday and thurs. is parents and firstborn day. Tues. and Fri. is girls day. Wed. and Sat. is boys day. At 8 years old, each kid begins to do their own laundry (Part of the tradition is recieving a laundry hamper and detergent for their birthday, and yes, they actually look forward to this as it seems to make them feel as though they have “arrived” at some level of maturity.). Sheets, towels, napkins are just thrown in with whatever load is going in and if they end up in your basket, you put them away. Sometimes, if a child is looking for a way to earn money, I offer to pay the older kids for doing a smaller sibling’s laundry. This helps me out and they earn $2 per load. Of course, they do not get paid for doing their own, and I do occassionally keep an eye out for special fancy church dresses etc. This system works great at our house and there is none done on Sundays. Hope this triggers ideas for your house!!
    Amber

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  11. Michelle says

    I have to tell you how wonderful I think you and your husband are! Your love and appreciation for him comes through your posts every day. You are such great role models for every young couple.

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  12. says

    That’s awesome. At 2 and 3, our littles help clear the table but that is about the extent of it for now. I’m looking forward to when my helpers get a little bigger. {Though I am not rushing the cutie-patootie, exhausting, fun, frustrating baby days away!!}

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  13. says

    We have a system too, but my kids are much younger and need a lot of help. I’m hoping it will pay off when they are older and can do things on their own. I made a chart and each of them has a job to do after dinner. They load the dishwasher, rinse the dishes, or wipe the table. All of them take their plates to the counter, even my 16 month old twins try. I’m glad we have plastic plates!

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  14. Anitra says

    That is fantastic! Unfortunately, with just a two-year-old and a bun in the oven, my husband has been picking up the slack with housework lately. Can’t wait until the kids are old enough to really help – hopefully without nagging ;)

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  15. elizabeth says

    I would love to know more! I just spent this morning cleaning the kitchen and taking out trash BEFORE I went to work. Can you say irritated??? I get no help in the house and I have a husband and 2 sons. My 12 yr old is disabled (probably about a 3 year old level) but even he could do more. Tell us more! :)))

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