Wednesday, February 29, 2012

O Dark Thirty at the Office

Once or twice a month I roust my big kids out of bed at 5:30 am to clean Brad's office building.
Sixteen toilets.
Eight sinks.
Four paper towel dispensers.

Five office suites, two of which house over fifteen employees, with garbage cans full of Lean Cuisine trays, Panda Express bags, and half-full Sonic cups.
Sweeping, mopping, vacuuming.
 All before dawn this time of year.

I try to make it worth their while on these early mornings:
 Notice the scabs and bruises on his forehead.  I don't even know how half of them got there . . .

We don't have a farm to teach our kids how to work, so we have an office building.  Hopefully they are learning a few things:

How to work hard for a fair wage.
How to save their hard-earned money for something they really want in the future.
How important education is.
As hard as it is to make time to clean the office building on a Saturday, it's a thousand times harder to get up that early and then go to school.

It was much easier when Heidi and Tucker were home and there were more hands to help lighten the load.  Now it's down to two. That's okay.  I have three more coming up in the ranks as the older ones age out of the system. Micah already has a mean pass with the vacuum.

Linking my O post to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday.Jenny Matlock


  1. I'm realizing with my young kids, teaching kids to really work is tough. It takes a lot of time and more patience than I'm capable of. Clearly it pays off after time. Nice work!

  2. way to go! I think that's awesome. I'd come help for one of those maple bars!! :)

  3. 5:30 am. Wow. Impressed over here in Canada.

  4. At least you're teaching your kids how to clean!

  5. That's great. I always had to do chores while I was growing up and I think it is really worthwhile. I knew some people who went off to college and didn't know how to clean a bathroom! Isn't nice to know your children won't have that problem. Our daughter is 8 months old today, and my husband and I joke about when her work program can start. ;)

  6. Donuts are a sweet reward! When it's our turn to clean the Church building, my kids rock at it! That's because when my husband was called to be the Building Maintenance guy, noone else showed up, so our family got to do it every Saturday for over a year. Guess whose kids know how to show respect to the building? Yeah, those kids would be mine. (smile)
    It was worth it.

  7. hahahaha, my favorite part was "three more coming up in the ranks." glad it's them and not me!!! i'm not a morning person until after 7:30am. it's a problem, lol.

  8. Teaching your kids a work ethic is so important. Too many kids just feel they are "owed" and don't turn into productive citizens. We have a fast food restaurant that my husband has used as a resource to teach our kids to work.

  9. Wow...that's early to get up and moving...but what a great lesson to teach your kids about hard work. And btw, I've have never seen such gigantic donuts like that...I'd come clean for one of those too!

  10. This kind of work is a great gift to your kids. We used to clean my dad's office building, too, and we even managed to have fun.


  11. LOL the two older ones look soooo happy to be there. Hee hee.
    It is a good lesson.~Ames

  12. It looks like the donuts were totally worth it.

    16 toilets? OK maybe not worth it.

    Cute picture of the kids. Cuts and bruises.....ya, that is what boys are made of.

  13. Good for you and your kids! You're teaching them good things.

  14. Good for you! Teaching them to work hard and from an early age is by far the way to go

  15. You'd have to buy me off with a lot more donuts to get me to wake up that early on a Saturday morning to clean bathrooms! LOL

  16. Boy, do we think alike! I remember, when our Lillypad was young, spending overnights at a religious summerhouse during the winter months. We cleaned from top to bottom - fireplaces, washing walls, floors and baseboards, into every corner. It's hard to find opportunities to teach the lessons you're teaching, as well as the lesson of service. Funny, but we both have happy memories of that time.

  17. You are the coolest Mom.

    I love that you are making them work and teaching them the value of a dollar and an honest days labor.

    I agree with Anita, too. I'd totally help you clean for a maple bar!

    Thanks for an outstanding link to the letter 'O'.