Tomorrow we’re going on a camping trip.
If at all possible, I like to get our house in order before we head out of town. Knowing I will return to a tidy home makes it a little easier to accept the fleeting nature of an awesome vacation!
Usually I’ll stay up late the night before a trip to fold laundry, clean up, and pack. During waking hours, my kids are not particularly interested in manual labor, and I’m not particularly interested in multi-tasking with them underfoot!
But today, we tried this game:
Mommy is the queen, and I give the orders. If you follow all of my orders without complaining, then you can watch a Disney movie of your choice.
We’re not above bribery around here.
The game started with a snack. Remember to feed your subjects, or they’ll eat you!
The queen’s orders included:
- Carry bags and toys from the car into the house.
- Sort the stack of books teetering off the shelf.
- Return stuffed animals to their home in the play room.
- Choose 3 stuffed animals to give away to other children.
I am pleased to report that all of my orders were fulfilled! We had a little trouble with item #4, because “these are my best friends I ever had, Mommy.” Anyway, it’s feeling like the queen reigns supreme around here (for now).
Now the big girls are watching Aladdin while the baby naps. (On a separate note — my heart swells when I see my kids laughing at the comic genius of Robin Williams as the Genie. We will always cherish you, Robin!)
Later on, my five-year-old decided (without being “ordered”) that it was time to sort and organize the toy kitchen. Our fourteen-month-old has been the chef-in-residence lately, so this area is basically a disaster zone.
When I noticed Grace sorting away, we had a chat.
Mom: What do you think will happen when Megan finds this?
Grace: (frowns) She will mess it all up.
Mom: Haha! You’re probably right. How many times do you think I have cleaned up after you?
Grace: Probably one hundred times!
Mom: But when you make a mess, I know you’ve been having fun. So what does it mean when Megan comes over and ruins your tidy kitchen?
Grace: (smiles) She was having fun. So I guess I’ll just clean it up again.
To quote the Genie: “[They] CAN be taught!”