Our household has been in disarray since the move last month. Martin and I have been cleaning, repairing, painting, and unpacking while simultaneously working full time, and managing the lives and wellbeing of four children — three of whom have been on school holiday for most of the month — all as I’ve been wrapping up my undergraduate program, too.
If it weren’t for our au pair, Wynter, to help us keep afloat, I am fairly certain Martin and I would have lost our minds a long time ago. A lot of things have slipped — chores, bedtimes, and family meetings — but as it stands now, we’ve reached a point where we can begin etching out a family routine once again, and that includes nailing down routine chores for the kids.
In the past, we used a single chore chart hung up in the kitchen or laundry room, in a place where it was seen on a regular basis near our family calendar. But considering the layout of our new house, there isn’t really an appropriate communal space for a chart of chores for multiple people. Plus, with the kids being older, and taking on additional responsibilities while also going in different directions with school and extracurriculars, I wanted to come up with a new way of managing household duties without creating an enormous chart that would soon become an overlooked piece of scenery and not a part of our daily lives.
We had closets and built-in storage in our rental, thanks to its American builders. Our new house, though, has none of that. And now we’ve reached a point in our unpacking where nothing more can be done without more shelves and wardrobes.
It was another night of nurse duty for me. Fortunately, Jaz’s breathing is responding to the meds, but I feel so bad that the poor kid can’t just have a normal cold, and be soothed with some vapo-rub, chicken soup, and cherry-flavored cough syrup.
I am covered in paint, completely gross and exhausted after wrestling with furniture, spiders, and radiators today, and my daughter sincerely asked just now if there were covered wagons instead of cars when I was born.
Car washes bring me peace!!! Because of their environmental laws, Germans in this area can’t wash their cars at home. I *get* the reasons, and who doesn’t want to save Planet Earth … but it drives me nuts because there’s no convenient car wash near us, so we rarely go and our cars look like roaming mud bricks after awhile.
There was complete MAYHEM in my house the past few days. It started when Martin went to get something in the car Sunday night, left the front door open, and our cat Kiwi bolted inside with a live mouse she dropped at Miss C’s feet … which went over well … as you can imagine.
Screaming. Chaos. More screaming. Tossed furniture. Tears. Doors slamming. Someone has a broom. Another has the vacuum. More screaming as the mouse ran and dropped down into the basement from the first floor landing.
Meanwhile, Kiwi was perched on the staircase, watching like a proud lion king over the land.