Monday, May 31, 2010

Summer Survival Tip #1

The Field Officer's Guide to Restoring Order in the Camp

So, your little soldiers are out of school for the summer. Suddenly, noise and chaos reign where once there was order and quiet. Some parents get frustrated. Some parents begin yelling. Some tell their kids to go outside and play. Some parents start handing out spankings.

I prefer to hand out chores. I turn into a general commanding the troops.

"Kaity, put away your dishes."
"Joe, put your dirty socks in the laundry room."
"Kaity, put those comic books back on the shelf."
"Joe, grab that diaper and put it in the Diaper Genie."
"Kaity, throw these papers in the trash."

Suddenly, they're too busy to be irritating. And the house looks nicer. And an added bonus is that after a few chores get meted out, the children cotton on -- and then they disappear. They skitter away and hide, playing quietly upstairs because they know that if they make any noise it will give away their field position -- a tactical error that will inevitably result in being given another chore.

It works every time.

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