Spring Cleaning the difficult child Way!

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by gcvmom, Apr 10, 2010.

  1. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Or otherwise known as "How To Take A 30-minute Job and Stretch It Out Over 3 Hours!"

    This is why I haven't enlisted their help in major cleaning jobs. And this is why our house is a mess (because I don't enlist their help more often).

    But today, they each got a job to do, and so far, it's not going too badly.

    difficult child 1 has a 1/2 bathroom (just sink and toilet) and his job was to clean it. Took some supervision on my part, but overall he did a decent job. There are some things, though, that he clearly does not think about. Like when I told him to take the bathroom rug outside to shake the dirt out, he picked it up from the middle, causing lots of debris to fall onto the floor :ashamed:. Then when he took it outside, he shook it out over the patio instead of the grass (double :ashamed:).

    difficult child 2 and easy child share a full bathroom, and they worked out a division of labor based on the list of things I said needed to be done. difficult child 1 is finished with his part -- he did a pretty good job from what I can tell. easy child is just starting hers. I'll have to judge with a final inspection when she's done.

    I promised them a trip to the movies this afternoon, and they have a time limit they have to meet or they miss the movie. So I think that's helping them stay focused for the most part.

    I love to watch them work! I can do this all day! :tongue:
  2. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I know, I know...Miss KT is nearly Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) about her room, but she could care less about the rest of the house. When I ask for help in the kitchen, pans are washed on the inside (but not the outside!), dishes from the dishwasher are just tossed up there, instead of making sure that nothing's been stuck on there, and "clean up the mess from when you made fudge" translates to "put all utensils in the empty marshmallow fluff jar, leave it sitting next to the stove, put the pan in the sink, add three drops of water, and get PO'd when called back to correct things."
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    LOL! We're going thru that here today, too. Bored difficult child's don't fair too well- especially mine- so giving him a job that gets stretched out twice as long then giving him something to do as a reward gives me a day to do my work in peace- usually. Isn't it nice to find a solution to a problem at least once in a while??
  4. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Yes, I think our difficult child's were cut from similar cloth :)

    easy child had a hissy fit over washing the floor in there. I can't do this. The sponge doesn't work. It's gross. Blah, blah, blah.

    So I made her stand there and watch how to do it (she just wanted to wander off) and I sarcastically pointed out how well the MAGIC sponge works when used the way I was showing her. She snickered a little and then apologized for being lazy. Then I gave her another task to do in lieu of the one she watched me do, reminding her that this is something EVERYONE has to learn how to do, because mommy is not going to come to her house when she's a grown-up to clean her bathroom!
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Your difficult children are made the way my husband is! He is unemployed. He is currently gritching about loading the dishwasher every day. He REFUSES to tell the kids to do anything, but he spends HOURS gritching because they don't do anything. I am about done with this - he has been given a week to figure out how to spend as much time on chores as he does on facebook, wii, games, and messing around on the computer. He currently has about 3 games that need daily upkeep, spends 2-3 HOURS a day on facebook, and we are lucky if he does 30 mins of anything constructive.

    I cannot grumle about the kids when husband acts like that.


    I have given up on having Elizabeth out. When she was here last the house looked awesome. husband trashed it in less than two days. NOT the kids' stuff - husband's stuff!!!:grrr:
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    LOL!! Boy, that stuff really does sound familiar!

    I told difficult child to straighten the game room (basicly his social room) and his bedroom and mow the grass in the front yard. He knew this yesterday, so could have done some it it then. He said he didn't want to have to dust and clean floors- I just had him do that last week. True, but he doesn't need to do all that this weekend- I was just asking him to straighten up the clutter, that's all. I get "but Mom, you know me, I can't JUST straighten." So after his thorough cleaning of the game room, he wanted to call a friend before cutting the grass but couldn't find his list of phone numbers, so there was a major meltdown, then cooling off period, then he cut the grass. After coming in from that and deciding on his own that he needed to do his laundry, he found his list of phone numbers. (I swear I didn't have it or even know where it was.)
  7. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Wow, do you guys all live with me and I don't know it?!

    This past week I had a minor meltdown... Actually it wasn't a meltdown, but I got the kids together and told them, "...And when it's clean it will STAY that way. One pair of socks, dirty dishes left out... You will be grounded. One day per incident."

    After a day each of being grounded my house is still pretty nice looking. I was able to do laundry, scan some pictures for a DVD I'm making for a friend, bake bread, get dinner ready (steaks & potatoes)... And goof quite a lot. I also did grocery shopping. It was wonderful!

    Of course, Jett will be upset when he does not have any clothes to wear to school on Monday. I also told the kids that I would not be reminding them to take laundry downstairs and sort it, so if they did not, it was their job to wash, dry, and fold... LOL he didn't. Three loads and mine and husband's was DONE! Took less than 2 hours.
  8. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Your difficult child must have gone to the same school of how to do chores. My difficult child can take a simple chore and drag it out 3 times more than necessary and even make
    a bigger mess while doing it.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Sounds like the way my difficult child cleans.
    Take out spray cleaner. Spray on toilet seat. Miss most of the really bad spots. Use too much TP to wipe it clean. flush.
    Make toilet overflow.
    Leave spray cleaner out.
    Take 1/2 of dirty clothes to laundry room.
    Leave trail along the way.
    Place clothes in washing machine. forget to turn it on.

    Yeah, they all went to the same School of Cleaning ... LOL!

    Which movie did you see?
  10. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I dropped them all off to see "How to Train Your Dragon -- 3D" (this was easy child's second time seeing it) and went back home for a nice 2-hour break with the house all to myself! :) They came right out of the theater when it was done, just like I'd asked (no stopping in the video game room).
  11. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I hope you got to enjoy that break- and didn't have to clean while they were at the movies. :)
  12. Mamaof5

    Mamaof5 Guest

    Oh goodness. It's the same in our household too. Big B is a terror to clean with. Although, it was interesting yesterday...

    ...put that "ignore the griping behavior" thing to the test. He wasn't cleaning his room so I walked in and started cleaning it. Boy did that set him off! He tried to shove me out of his room and started screaming but I kept cleaning. He ran down the stairs and screamed he was leaving if I didn't stop. I ignored it and he eventually stopped screaming after about 20 minutes. Kept cleaning though...I think a lot of that was my telling him about the points system and explaining it to him a bit and then telling him if he got the cleaning in his room done so we can move it around and freshen it up for him he would earn 100 points. He dallied all afternoon and I gave him 3 warnings then started cleaning.

    He freaked big time. It's still not finished but I figure he did get somewhere yesterday (half of it was done so I guess half of the points are in order or am I wrong). I could subsequently tell him the other half of his points can be gotten with finishing the other half of his room. Papa fixed the door his 4 yr old sister broke (his bedroom door) by hanging off the door knob. Geeze, that kid is only maybe 35 lbs soaking wet (very petite) and she destroyed the hinge on his bedroom door. Papa told him, fixing your door, you fix the inside of the room by cleaning it please.

    I'm sorry I hijacked your thread - I hate spring cleaning with difficult child kiddos. Makes it triple the work.
  13. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Too funny reading this. easy child/difficult child is the one who takes forever to do a chore. It can take her 1-2 hours to do dishes. Straightening the video rack, which she likes to do, can take up to a half a day. difficult child, well let's just say most things need to be recleaned after he is done cleaning. However, he does do a good job cleaning bathrooms.
  14. ML

    ML Guest

    I need to work more on this myself. Manster needs to learn these skills and your post has inspired me!
  15. sunxstone

    sunxstone New Member

    lol I just posted my own thread about this, I didn't see this one. This is an every day thing at my house.. mostly because he "short cuts" then has to come back and re do it correctly. Dirty clothes go *in* the hamper, not balled up on the opposite side of the bathroom, and not just laying on the floor in front of the tub. You *know* this. We do this *every* day. Do it right the first time and I won't have to bother you to come do it again.

    Round and round and round we go, over and over and over.. and.. KTMom.. ahhhh!! He might never get it, huh? He does exactly like KT does. He'll drop his dirty dishes in the sink - still covered in food, then get mad when he's gotta come back and scrape it out over the trash can. But he does it with *everything*.
  16. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Chicken lady, I think this is the norm with any kids, difficult child or not. I remember my mom standing over me (or one of my siblings) because I'd take a chore a few minutes long & make it incredibly complex.

    Of course, if I got to go to the movies afterward......hmmmm, explains a lot.
  17. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    :rofl: You all have given me great comfort knowing that the drama here takes place in your households each and every day, too!

    When I have the energy, I do hover and insist things are done right/thoroughly. But when I am mentally exhausted, I ignore a lot, and thus the usual state of things around here. But I'm on a roll this weekend so I intend to make the most of it. For example, *GROSS WARNING* difficult child 1 coughed up a glob of phlegm this morning and missed the trash can when he spat it out. I don't know when he did it, but I know it was him because he's the only one coughing in this house right now. I interrupted his TV show and made him get up off the couch, walk to the kitchen and clean it up. I could have just as easily done it, but I think taking the extra time to make him go through the motions is something he'll remember (I hope, I hope). Same thing with difficult child 2 yesterday. He is forever leaving the light on in his room. I interrupted his TV show last night and had him go back to his room to turn out the light. Maybe it will all eventually stick. Maybe not. Part of me just feels like "I'll be danged if I'm going to fix this! He/she can come back and take care of it." Know what I mean??