I’ve been thinking lately about the subject of work ethic.  I am beginning to see in my children those which possess a natural work ethic and those that don’t.  Some people are born workers, yet that shouldn’t discourage those who need a little prodding.  I believe work ethic can be taught.  This subject has been on my mind as I have become worn out by cleaning up after others constantly.  I know motherhood comprises of cleaning up after others, yet I am finding myself doing more than seems neccesary…and feeling grumpy about it.  I have been allowing each and every spill, smudge, and mess to become my problem.  Why should it be?  Can’t the little mess makers become responsible for their own messes? Yes, they can!  Now, lest you think my kids a bunch of loafers, they aren’t.  They help when asked to help.  The problem was that I haven’t been asking enough or requiring enough.  Therefore, we are on a mission in our home to mold kids who know what it means to work! Can’t you all relate to the freshly cleaned bathroom that moments later has toothpaste smudged somewhere? Or trash that didn’t quite make it in the bin? What about those dirty clothes or towels that seem to miss the hamper?  Well, these are the little things that have been causing me to sigh as I go behind correcting others lack of attention.  I truly believe that people will only respect their and others home environments if they are required to.  There is something in our sin nature that stops us from doing more than someone holds us accountable for.  I have started making the kids wipe up their own spills, take their dishes to the sink, clean their rooms properly, make beds, vacuum occassionally, sweep crumbs, help carry things and on and on.  They actually enjoy helping as most kids do.  Sometimes it is hard to let them be responsible because I know I can do it faster and better, yet I am trying to relieve all the burden I am carrying while making them into productive people.  I also don’t want them to grow up to be disrespectful people who blow into somewhere, make a mess and leave..because it isn’t their place.  I was encouraged today when I told Jasper it was time for a nap,and he immediately stopped playing and starting putting toys away.  I hadn’t said anything about cleaning up; he just thought it was approppriate.  He carefully sorted the toys and put them away properly.  If a 22 month old can be responsible, we all can!  We’re working on it!



  1. Jasper must come over for a play date immediately!!
    Toothpaste…. The stripe in the sink. Good job making the effort to teach this. It is harder work for you in the beginning but it will pay off for you and them.
    We have slacked off on the “chores” when he has so much homework, sports, and church. We struggle with seasonal responsibility. He does get the clothes in the hamper but has no idea how to return markers to their appropriate place without being told to. He will wake up in the morning and say “I was using them”. I’ll say “While you were asleep?!”

  2. kimmyskids says:

    LOL! I know Misty…it’s the little things. We’ve been working on this for awhile, but when I am busy or stressed, I just end up doing it all because I have no energy to instruct. Overall the kids are helpful and do chores, but I do have a list of little grievances that we need to work on.

  3. Good job Kim! We battle out the same messes over here and teaching responsibility. Last night we caught Noah playing in the yard in his socks, so I made him hand wash them…which created water all over the counter and floor…which he then had to clean up. I wonder if he even learned anything from it. Only time will tell.

  4. Of course Jasper picks up , he is a little mini Kim and you love it.. Gracyn is alittle mini Jack. Aidan is himself.

  5. Cindy Leaf says:

    Oh my. You put into words the very things I have been struggling with! You are always good at that!
    I LOVE your mom’s comments!! Funny!

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