So, Eric and I have recently been discussing how much we both love having a clean house and how relaxing it is to be able to take a load off in the evenings/weekends without feeling like there is cleaning/picking up/laundry, etc, calling our names! We excel in different areas of keeping things tidy - I will scrub pots and pans 'till the cows come home, but please don't ask me to scrub your toilet. Eric can de-clutter a room in record speed, but would rather endure the stench coming from the cats' litter box than actually replace it with fresh kitty litter. I'd say we actually do a pretty good job of meeting each other's cleaning weaknesses! That being said, we are trying a new plan beginning this week to ensure the completion of our designated/chosen chores each week. I am going to use a point system that if you DON'T do your chore that week, you get a point. It will work like golf scoring; points = bad. When you reach 10 points, you have to face the leisure activity to do together that winner gets to pick. Since we will have quite a few chores each, it would be easy to rack up points quickly if we get lazy. If we are both lazy, then we both have consequences! We have already begun brainstorming what we will pick for each other...so far we have come up with:
Betsy's consequence (chosen by Eric) = playing 1 hour of Halo (video games) with Eric (gag me!)
Eric's consequence (chosen by Betsy) = attending her favorite yoga class at the gym with her (I just know he will thank me later!...er, maybe...)
I sprang the idea to Eric last night as we lay in bed (gotta love pillow talk) and even though it was late (11:20 pm), and we both had to get up early for work (6:30 am), he got SO excited about it (loves anything that can be a game) that he wanted to get up and make the chart right then! I was like, 'how about we do it tomorrow? for the love of sleep, please?!?' His equally exhausted body conceeded and we fell asleep, each blissfully dreaming of the lovely activities/hobbies we would enjoy doing together.... I think it is safe to say that we will both stay pretty motivated! Not that we would ever enjoy "torturing" our loved one with our own interests, but it is an excuse to pick anything in the world as an activity together! I can get a baking buddy for the afternoon or an early morning breakfast date and he can get a napping companion (I hate naps, but he takes at least a couple per week) or enjoy another guitar playing in his Rock Band concerts. ;) All housework aside, it might actually be a good exercise for us to practice compromise and relationship building...
Also, I googled "chore charts" for ideas and I found a bunch of articles about how to make chores a part of a child's responsibility and how to do so without incentives. Apparently children should not need incentives to do chores, but rather, face consequences for not doing what should already be their responsibility...since I agree, I thought the same should apply to Eric and me as adults? I also think in this case for us, sometimes you just have to light a fire under your butt to get moving. The prospect of playing Halo sure does it for me and I can assure you, yoga is a worse enemy than kitty litter to Eric.
Anyway, I ended up using the ever-helpful Excel to format a chart - wish I could figure out on here how to upload it...maybe something Eric can help me with. I'm sure ya'll will be sitting on the edge of your chair waiting for it; nothing more exciting than an excel spreadsheet! So far, the list is up to 16 chores (some weekly, some daily)...does that sound like a lot to anyone else?