Tag Archives: raising kids

There’s No Crying In Housework

Cast of Characters

Jane (aka Mom, Taskmaster, Evil Queen of the Jane Household)

#1son (helpful 9 year old, loves baseball, the Military Channel and picking on his younger brother)

#2son (cheerful, goofy youngest of the family who will do anything to get out of chores. Anything.)

Act 1, Scene 1

(A messy home. A very, very messy home.)

JANE

First, we need to pick up the clutter. Then, you can choose something from the Job Jar and get paid OR you can do what I tell you to do and not get paid. It’s your choice.

#1SON

O.K, Mom.

(#1son happily trots off to clean playroom, bedroom, family room, garage – wherever cleaning needs to be done, he cheerfully goes. God, I love this kid! #2son continues playing with Legos.)

JANE

#2son, you need to pick up your toys now.

(#2son ignores Jane)

I mean it. You need to clean up. And you can pick a chore or I can pick a chore. But if I pick it, you’re not getting paid.

(Ad lib arguing, pleading, bargaining, hiding, going to the bathroom, needing to put on a band-aid, looking for a lost Lego, hiding again, etc.)

I mean it, #2son. I’m not fooling around. You need to help. NOW!

#2SON

But I don’t want to! I want to play with my LEGOOOOOOOOOS!

JANE

Well, you have to. Are you a member of this family? Yes. Then you have to do your part.

#2SON

Well, I don’t want to be a member of this family. I’m going to run away!

JANE

That’s fine. But before you go you’re going to have to do some chores. You owe us for dinner last night, that comfy bed you slept in and breakfast this morning. Oh, and you still haven’t worked off what you owe for your swim team fees.

(#2son’s chin starts to quiver. Eyes begin welling up.)

Oh no, mister. That’s not going to work with me.

(Tears start flowing now and he falls to a heap on the floor, face down.)

Crying? Seriously? You’re crying over a little housework? I can’t believe this! All I need for you to do is pick up your toys and pick a couple chores from the job jar. It’ll take you 15 minutes. Tops. And you’re crying about it! I do this every day. Pick up after you all. Clean toilets. Scrub floors. Vacuum. Dust. Laundry. Do you see me crying about it?

THERE’S NO CRYING IN HOUSEWORK!

(And then, realizing what she said, Jane starts laughing hysterically.)

Nope. Not one of my better moments. But I still crack myself up.

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