Cinderella Lives At My House

As I told you last week, we recently moved into our very own home. Both of my children are very happy here. I’m a single mom so I truly count on the help of my children in order to keep up with the house. This is a discussion we even had before I started hunting for a home. I told them both they would have more chores and they willingly agreed to pitch in.

 My son has taken on the extra responsibilities that come with a house with open arms. He rakes leaves, takes out the trash, sweeps the deck and helps in any way I ask. Shoot, I usually don’t even have to ask. Unfortunately my 12-year-old daughter hasn’t kept up her end of the deal. In fact, I can’t even motivate her to completely unpack or keep her room clean. She’s supposed to load and unload the dishwasher each day but even that is a fight. Based on her reaction, you would think that I just asked her to jump in a pit with venomous snakes when really I only asked her to sweep the kitchen or dust her room. Don’t get me wrong, A will help sometimes without complaining  – if it’s something she enjoys doing like making homemade ravioli with the family or watching her baby cousin. And J does complain from time to time, especially if it’s something he doesn’t like, but is usually willing to pitch in without much of a fight.

I do not give an allowance but I do pay for both of their cell phones monthly, in addition to providing a warm place to live, clothes and food.

 How do you get your children to pitch in around the house without a fight? Do you pay an allowance or offer some other type of incentive? What do you expect of your kids and at what age? I appreciate your advice.