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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Chores for twins does not always mean teamwork

I have posted before about the Twofer having certain jobs around the house. What I have not told you is how I realized that twins do not always work best as a team.

Take for example the dreaded dishwasher.

I hate emptying the dishwasher.
My husband will do it reluctantly, and only when he damn well pleases which is often 24-48 hours after I've asked him. (I used to think his delay in emptying the dishwasher was a big F.U. to me. Now I know it's not about me, it's about the dishwasher. But that's another post. One that requires some level of therapy.)

I was happy hand over the job o
f emptying the dishwasher (with some supervision) to our twins. At first they were happy to help. Then it got stale, because our dishwasher is run every single day. Sometimes twice a day.

This great idea of mine was turning into a major referee job because the girls were fighting over every little thing...who did more, who wanted to do the silverware, who got stabbed with a fork, you get the idea.

I tried, "If M won't help than you just do your share and she'll have to do the rest."

I tried, "L, you do the silverware and dishes, M you do the pots/pans and glasses."

I tried splitting the racks, with one on top rack duty, the other, bottom.

I realized the dishwasher was better left to one person.

So now we keep track (sort of, you know I'm really bad at that) on a calendar, who emptied the dishwasher the day before.
They each get a day off, which makes it less of a battle when it's their turn.
Not only that, but they are thankful (I know, right?) when my husband picks up the slack!

As for filling the dishwasher, I still take that one because I'm the only one capable of loading the thing with any precision. (The same can be said for packing the car when we go away but again, that's another post because it involves exploring male/female roles in marriage and how my household seems to be a little skewed.)

Bottom line here folks, if you have twins, or even 2 or more kids, keep the chores separate. Each child can be held accountable for their quality of work, and they can be rewarded justly. Plus, they can learn teamwork on the soccer field where there are professional referees.

Just my 2 cents.


Lolli said...

We have 5 kids (no twins) and they each have their separate chores which rotate week to week. We do some things together (projects and such) because I think it's good to learn to work together, too. But they each have a section of the dishwasher they're in charge of, a room in the house that they need to maintain, set table, clear table, etc.

LittleTechGirl said...

First, I have that exact same dishwasher. I too, hate emptying it! I have not given that chore to the twins yet, but not a bad idea! The girls are 5, so they can certainly handle it. The boys are 2 and they are very good at coming by and closing the dishwasher while I am still trying to put stuff in it!

The husband does empty it, but only when the sink is overflowing with dishes. I too am the only one capable of loading it correctly. He puts them in any kind of way and the dishes don't get clean and then I get annoyed.

As for chores, right now I put the girls on chores together. They do well when cleaning their room, or picking up things in the family room. But mostly they distract each other, or fight over who gets to put up what! And one is a much better "cleaner" than the other.

Musings from Me said...

I'm with you on the dishwasher woes. This a.m. we ate cereal out of Rubbermaid tubs and I had to rewash a couple of spoons as sink was loaded with 2 days worth of dishes. My husband knows better than to mess with the dishwasher or the washing machine/dryer. I get to everything when I get to it. And, really paper products were invented for the dishwasher woes!