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Just a minute to chat before H wakes up from his nap and wants to play. Smile  Lunch!


I’m lovin’ the combo of Dr. Praeger’s veggie burger and BBQ sauce.

IMG_1306 IMG_1297

Balance – chips ‘n kale.


So, for some reason, I end up eating many of my meals on my kitchen floor.  Too lazy to walk to the dining room table? 


Anyway, while eating lunch on said floor, I noticed that the floors are tremendously dirty.  We’re talking grime-on-the-baseboards dirty (why do they have baseboards, anyway? All the do is collect dust…).


Y’all know how I feel about dirty floors so I’m planning to spend the next few hours cleaning.  I’m trying to figure out how to make cleaning the baseboards into a fun baby activity (one hand on the sponge, the other on a rattle?!).


This got me thinking:  What chores did you do as a kid, and were you paid an allowance to do chores?  My chores included:  walking the dogs twice a day, bathing the dogs every other week (damn, I don’t even do that now), and cleaning the bathrooms once a week.  My mom always did my laundry – she loves laundry.  I was paid an allowance but it wasn’t tied directly to chores.  I think my allowance was more about general good behavior, but I definitely didn’t get an allowance if I skipped the chores. I did get a ‘bonus’ if I got straight A’s on my report card!  I’ve read it’s bad to tie money directly to school work or chores, but it was pretty motivating to me.


Chores that I can’t wait for Henry to take over – unloading the dishwasher, walking the dogs, and cleaning the bathrooms.  When do you think he can handle doing my taxes?



  • Kendra @ My Full-Thyme Life August 28, 2012, 1:30 pm

    Chores I did as a kid: dusting, vacuuming, dishes, bathrooms… now that I think about it, I pretty much had to clean the whole house! :-/ No real allowance to speak of either!

    Chores I can’t wait for my 18 month old to do: mowing, weed pulling, litter boxes and dog poo!

  • Marissa@ohhhsolovely August 28, 2012, 1:30 pm

    this is kinda embarrassing, but i had no chores as a kid. when i got married 4.5 years ago, i didn’t even know how to wash dishes! luckily, my husband’s mother taught him well & he has taught me well. i’m proud to say that i keep a pretty clean kitchen/house these days! we’ve already decided, though, that we think chores are very important for kids & our kids will definitely be given some responsibilities around the house.

  • Annette@FitnessPerks August 28, 2012, 1:32 pm

    I did all the chores as a kid-clean my room, make my bed, rake leaves, do the dishes, set the table–but I did ’em with my siblings, so it was more fun! (Except I hated chores on Saturdays. UGH).

  • deva at deva by definition August 28, 2012, 1:32 pm

    We have ten-inch baseboards (our house is over 100 years old) and I clean them with a fabric softener sheet which helps keep them cleaner, longer.

  • Megan@ The Running Doc August 28, 2012, 1:37 pm

    I didn’t get paid for chores specifically, though the only week-to-week chore I was required to do was keeping my room clean but I did receive a weekly allowance of $20 that I used as lunch money and got to keep whatever was left over at the end of the week.

    And my siblings and I totally got paid for grades. For every A we got the dollar amount based on our current school grade (ex. $10 per A in the 10th grade), received nothing for a B, and owed back money for C’s. And if we got straight A’s for the semester, our total payout was doubled. We could definitely make bank in high school for having good grades.

  • Colleen August 28, 2012, 1:46 pm

    Growing up I did all types of chores – the big one was dishes. My parents didn’t have a dishwasher until 12 years ago so growing up we were the ‘dishwasterr’. We never were paid for our chores, good behavior, etc. If they had extra money – which wasn’t often – we could have a dollar to grab a treat.

    My sons are 6 and 8, and are finally contributing to the housework. They take turns unloading the dishwasher, cleaning/picking up their rooms, swiping the floors, cleaning their pee off every surface in their bathroom, and helping outside. It can be difficult some days to correct them or redo their work when it isn’t up to my standards, but I am learning any kind of help is better than none.

  • Ellen @ Wannabe Health Nut August 28, 2012, 1:47 pm

    I had to set the dinner table most nights and for some reason I just haaaated it. What a brat I was—at least it wasn’t taking out the trash!

  • Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 28, 2012, 1:50 pm

    I always hated setting the table or making my bed – things that I try to make my husband do these days! 🙂

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More August 28, 2012, 1:53 pm

    We mainly used to help with dusting and vacuuming. I’ve never minded vacuuming but I HATE dusting. To this day, it’s probably my most neglected chore. lol

  • Lindsay McAlester August 28, 2012, 1:55 pm

    I vacuumed, clean bathroom, clean room, clean kitchen includig dishes and folded laundry. My mom said she missed me when I moved away. She still says I am the best cleaner out of all of her kids (5). 🙂 When she comes to my house and my two kids or I haven’t really cleaned up for the day she says my house is still always clean.

    My almost 6 year old girl does a great job of cleaning up the playroom, making her bed and wiping down mirrors or counters. My 4.5 year old boy is a bum and says he’s too tired to clean, but he makes his bed, picks up his toys, and likes to fold towels.

    Btw…I was never paid fo doing my chores, but was punished for not doing them. My kids will have rewards given for the good behavior of cleaning up and then we’ll graduate to $ for budgeting their own extra wants.

  • KnSPeace August 28, 2012, 1:58 pm

    I had to do chores, but rarely got an allowance. I didn’t mind, I was a goody-two-shoes!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat August 28, 2012, 2:00 pm

    Gah cleaning the floors are probably my most loathed job! As a kid, I also received an allowance and my chores varied as I got older. When I was younger, all I really needed to do was keep my room tidy and make my bed every day. Then, emptying the dishwasher was tacked on the list, as well as cleaning the bathrooms. Shoveling snow was a seasonal task, and one that I can’t stand the thought of now that I live in a condo with a shoveling service, but as a kid, I didn’t mind doing it. I’m a huge wuss now when it comes to the cold!

  • Sana August 28, 2012, 2:02 pm

    I know this will come as a shock to you, but my parents never had me do chores. Anddddd, yeah. I don’t think I was spoiled- my parents just took care of everything themselves. I do however run errands since I still live with my parents, so I guess that is a chore?

  • AmandaonMaui August 28, 2012, 2:06 pm

    We got an allowance, if we remembered to ask for it. I didn’t remember to ask for it very often. LOL I might be rich otherwise, as I was the kind of kid to hoard their money instead of spend it.

    I did many different chores as a kid. My mom cleaned houses, and the last thing she wanted to do when she came home was clean. my dad did outdoors chores when he came home, but sometimes he’d vacuum or steam clean the floors (he sold vacuum cleaners for a while). I wasn’t always good about doing them. I’d often procrastinate them until the last 15 minutes before my parents came home from work. Then I’d rush, and then usually get into an argument with my parents about not having them done. It wasn’t too much work, but I always said it was. I could have easily finished them if I’d just eaten the frog and got them out of the way first.

    As an adult I am very different now. Sometimes I procrastinate things, but not too often, and I certainly don’t fight with my SO about it.

  • Michelle @ Eat Move Balance August 28, 2012, 2:12 pm

    I was in charge of mowing the lawn when I was a teenager. I didn’t mind it at all–I was outside, got a little exercise and I earned $10! I was a happy camper.

    In general, my sisters and I were expected to take turns doing dishes, and we were all in charge of doing our own laundry.

    The chore I hate most as an adult is vacuuming. Can’t stand it. Thank goodness my husband likes doing it, or else we’d have the dirtiest floors ever!

  • Sam @ Better With Sprinkles August 28, 2012, 2:16 pm

    I was a spoiled kid – the only chore I had was emptying the dishwasher. Of course, I hated it but I suppose I got off easy. 🙂

  • Michelle August 28, 2012, 2:24 pm

    Chores as a kid-putting dishes away, taking dirty laundry to the basement, cleaning the bathroom, washing floors. I didn’t get an allowance, “it was part of everyday house upkeep”, as my mother told me. My siblings and I never received an allowance.

    My 7 year old is responsible for feeding the dogs dinner, emptying the dishwasher, and keeping her room picked up daily. My husband convinced me that we should pay her $3/wk, but deduct $ if items are not done.

    Can you wash my baseboards when you are done? They get pretty dusty/dirty here in CO too! 🙂

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats August 28, 2012, 2:31 pm

    I didn’t get an allowance until middle school, when I was actually old enough to go places without my parents, otherwise they would just give me money when I needed it. And I have to shamefully say I had like… zero chores. I only had to make my bed every morning and pick up my room when the cleaning lady came once a week. Occasional yard work was required, like raking leaves and picking up sticks before someone mowed. Thank your mother for making you clean bathrooms, I’m almost 25 and cannot clean my bathroom. It’s pretty bad…

  • Helene @healthyfrenchie August 28, 2012, 2:42 pm

    I think chores are important because they teach kids responsibility and prepares them to be independent.
    I had to teach my 17 years old summer intern how to mop and clean the counters over the last couple of weeks. He had no idea where to start! His future wife can thank me later haha

  • Beks August 28, 2012, 2:46 pm

    I had to do my own laundry, load the dishwasher, and the only thing I got paid for was mowing the lawn. My lazy sister refused to do any outside work, so she didn’t get paid as much as me. But, laundry and dishes just HAVE to be done, ya know?

  • Blakely @ The Husky Life August 28, 2012, 2:56 pm

    I didn’t get an allowance but I did have to do chores. Empty the dishwasher everyday and clean my bathroom once a week. My mom also eventually started making me do my laundry, but not until my senior year of high school (I guess to prepare me for college).

  • Rebecca @ Blueberry Smiles August 28, 2012, 3:44 pm

    I agree about baseboards! They are my least favorite thing to clean. My only chore as a kid was setting the table every other day (my sister did the alternate days). I used to wish I had a list of chores (weird!) but my mom wasn’t into that and generally just asked me to do whatever was needed at the moment (and she usually ended up taking care of most things).

  • Kelli August 28, 2012, 4:11 pm

    I had to practice piano for at least 30 minutes every day, & then my 2 sisters & I had rotating chores of sweeping the kitchen after each meal, wiping down the kitchen table, & emptying all the trash cans in the house (all of these after each meal). We would each have 1 chore for the week & switch on Sundays. Then we had Saturday chores too- my mom had 3 index cards made & those were rotated too. We had to do all those things to get our $2 weekly allowance. 🙂 We could earn extra by mowing the yard, which I always did. $10 for the front, $10 for the back. I loved mowing!
    I’m glad my parents had us do chores, it helped me learn how to keep a tidy home!
    When we were older Tuesday nights were the night we each had a turn cooking dinner to help my mom b/c she was in grad school & had classes that night. We got to plan the menu & everything. It was fun! We will definitely have our kids do chores, & they will get an allowance. Not sure how it will be related though.

  • Brigid August 28, 2012, 4:12 pm

    My parents divorced when I was 9, so from then on, I progressively took on more chores. Mom and I alternated on the laundry, the dishes (by far my most hated one), taking out the trash, cleaning the floors, scrubbing the bathroom, etc.

  • Jen@HealthyFoodandFamily August 28, 2012, 4:13 pm

    Ugh. i spent the morning sweeping, mopping and scrubbing baseboards myself.

  • Sara August 28, 2012, 4:14 pm

    I did chores growing up and my allowance wasn’t tied to my chores either. I never received money for the grades on my report card either. My parents believed I should bring home good grades because it was expected of me.

  • Sarah August 28, 2012, 4:15 pm

    You have baseboards because without them you’d see the gap where the uneven end of the drywall doesn’t quite meet the floor. That would be worse.

    You sure do have a pretty wainscot and baseboards though!

  • Dani@ Dani, redesigned August 28, 2012, 4:51 pm

    I didn’t get paid for anything. I was just expected to do them: dishes, clothes, cleaning my room, dusting. If I wanted money, I just asked for it.

  • wendi August 28, 2012, 5:02 pm

    I had chores as a kid too… bathroom, my own room, laundry, we all took turns walking the dogs, etc. I didn’t get an allowance, but once I turned 16 my parents paid for my cell phone and insurance and gas for my car. I wasn’t allowed to have a job, but I had to keep above at 3.6 GPA, play sports, volunteer, and was also the President of my class, which kept me busy. I agree with you Caitlin, that I think kids should get an allowance based on ‘good behavior’ and not just if they can make their bed. Good post :).

  • Hillary August 28, 2012, 5:12 pm

    I hated (and still hate!) unloading the dishwasher. Such a random chore to dread, but it’s definitely my least favorite!

  • Katie of Cabbage Ranch August 28, 2012, 5:21 pm

    Growing up we had rotating chores, but somehow I always ended up having more to do than my slacker siblings… Strangely enough, the messiest of us is now the uber-clean professional project manager. Rest assured, that is *not* me. These days I don’t mind any chores- I just resent the time required to do them!

  • Melissa @ Be Not Simply Good August 28, 2012, 5:59 pm

    Ha! If Henry can do taxes, sign me up! I must admit, though I clean my floors regularly, I don’t focus on the baseboards as often… They do collect dirt, don’t they? There are a lot of things that seem to exist only for the sake of collecting dust, now that I think about it.

  • Stephanie @ Steph's Miles August 28, 2012, 6:28 pm

    There aren’t many chores they I despise that I can remember right now. My mother DESPISES unloading the dishwasher, so I take on that duty whenever I’m around.

  • deb August 28, 2012, 6:46 pm

    I find myself eating on the floor a lot too now that baby is here!

    I used to do my own laundry and empty the dishwasher. I still hate both tasks to this day!

  • Jolene (Homespun Heritage) August 28, 2012, 7:31 pm

    I did chores because I lived there and starting in 9th grade my parents never touched my laundry again (OCD and control issues!). I did whatever chores needed to be done (dishes, bathroom, vacuum, etc)…I was given a flat rate per week to cover any expenses I might have and it was not tied to chores.

  • Jessica August 28, 2012, 8:02 pm

    I didn’t have any chores as a kid. My mom always said she didn’t have kids so they could do her housework. She always felt like it was still her responsibility. I imagine I’ll take the same route with my kids. Chores are still not an important part of my life as an adult. My house is messy, I haven’t cleaned my baseboards since I bought the house 3 years ago GASP, and there are ALWAYS dishes in my sink. I’d just rather spend my time doing other things 🙂

    I also didn’t get an allowance, I don’t really see the point to one really. And I DEFINITELY didn’t get money for getting good grades, they were just expected.

  • jennyv August 28, 2012, 8:52 pm

    I didn’t get paid for chores — my parents said it was part of being a member of the family to do your fair share 🙂 I watered plants, wiped base boards (really!), helped pick up sticks before my dad mowed our lawn (we lived on an acreage), etc. That said, they were willing to give us money for little things here and there.

    Just heard on the news that the avg. parent gives a child $65 a month as an allowance!

  • Sarah @climbinvegan August 28, 2012, 9:18 pm

    I never got any money for my grades… just grounded if I didn’t get A’s.. so I guess the opposite of yours! I had over a 4.0 every semester of highschool except one… so I wish I got paid!!

  • Emily B August 28, 2012, 9:44 pm

    I used to love doing the ironing, I guess I found it therapeutic and quiet – unlike the vacuuming which is so loud, ugh. I found as a kid that doing chores with music on got me more in the mood and distracted me while I was doing something I didn’t enjoy very much:P I was never an extremely high achiever at school and was glad Mum never punished me if I didn’t get A’s, I just think that would’ve been too much pressure and I would’ve enjoyed school a lot less which would’ve impacted on my grades. Mum put a lot of emphasis on trying on best and if our best was a C, as in maths and science, at least we’d tried – I endeavor to pass this moral onto my future children:)

  • Jen August 29, 2012, 12:21 am

    My allowance experience sounds very similar to yours, although I don’t remember any bonuses for good grades (thankfully, I was usually pretty self-motivated in that area). While my allowance was not solely based on chores, I can definitely remember being threatened with “NO allowance!” if they didn’t get done. 🙂 Chores were quite the variety…basically, whatever my (wonderful, loving) Mom determined needed to get done! 🙂

  • Michele Albert August 29, 2012, 7:59 am

    My siblings and I rotated the daily chores (setting the table, clearing the table, washing the dishes, taking out the trash, etc). Our rooms had to be completely cleaned once a week, and we each cleaned one “other” room in the house (kitchen, bathroom, living room, etc) every Saturday morning.

    Since my mother worked we were also left a list of things that needed to be done by the time she came home from work (peel and dice the potatoes for dinner, put the chicken in the oven to start cooking, walk to the store and get bread, etc)

    We all had to mow the lawn. We also rotated doing laundry and DREADED when my brother would do it. I swear he screwed it up each time to see if he could get out of it!

    My mother used to say ” I didn’t make this house dirty by myself so I am not cleaning it by myself!”

    We did receive an allowance each week, we had to put a minimum of 10% into our bank accounts – we had to walk it to the bank and deposit it. It really stuck with me, I still put 10% of my paycheck away in savings each week. I think that was one of the best things my parents did for us.

    By the time we left the house – we could all clean, cook, balance a checkbook, write a check, change a tire, do a three point turn, and fill the car with oil! The last three are curtesy of my Dad, he wouldn’t let you sit for your drivers exam until you could those things!

  • Liz August 29, 2012, 11:48 am

    I was in charge of watering the plants at my grandparents’ house and helping my mom to dust.

  • Anna September 7, 2012, 1:09 am

    We (my brother and I) had a number of chores growing up that changed as we got older. I don’t remember the exact ages for a number of them but we vacuumed, dusted, cleaned the bathrooms, walked the dogs, cleaned our rooms, did our laundry, etc. We had an allowance too but it wasn’t really tied to the chores. Chores were just a part of being a member of the house.
    One thing my parents did that I really appreciate to this day is that at the age of 10 we were allowed to start cooking dinner. We had four tasks associated with dinner (and four people in the family – funny how that worked out perfectly 😉 hehe) – cooking, setting the table, clearing the table, and doing the dishes. Each person was assigned one task each evening. When we were little, we could set the table and clear the table (and our parents had the cook/dishes tasks). Then once we “proved” ourselves, we could do the dishes as well. And then, once we could do the dishes well enough to pass inspection AND had turned 10, we could start cooking (with parental assistance). What this means is I started cooking for my family at the age of 10 and have never really had to worry about how to cook. I was completely grateful for this ability in college and I plan on making sure my kids get the same type of experience (it might be awhile since my little one is only 8 months old).

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