Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Chores on the Wheel Go Round and Round

Here, in all its humble homemade glory, is one of my fridge fixtures. The "Chore Wheel" has helped remind the kids whose turn it is to do what for over 5 years now. (I know it goes back at least 5 years because Katie made her own when she moved into her dorm freshman year.) I don't remember where I first saw one of these, but for us it has been a lifesaver. I don't have to nag, I just look at the wheel and see who is up next.

I guess it's a sign of the kids' growing up that the Chore Wheel is almost obsolete. Instead of assigning one person per meal, I now unload the dishwasher when I get up and everyone is on their own to clean up after themselves during breakfast and lunch. The dinner dish worker is now assigned based on current school schedule and sports practice. The Chore Wheel is about to be replaced with a post-it note that says "Kev-T/Th, Kris-W/F, Kels-M/S". Steve and I take on Sunday together to give our workers a rest :-).

So the good news is that, yes, over the years I've worked myself out of the job of doing dishes for the most part. (Young moms, take heart. This will happen to you too!) Cleaning the kitchen has never been my favorite job, but Lynne over at The Sweetbriar Patch posted an excellent reminder the other day. What if, instead of looking at the drudgery of dishes, we saw it as simply "preparing for the next meal"? On the one hand, we will NEVER be caught up with dishes because there is always one more meal ahead. By changing the terms, however, we focus on the fact that we have another opportunity to feed/love/nurture the ones God has placed in our care. We are setting the stage for an upcoming event and we are getting ready for that next occasion when we gather round the table in sweet fellowship.