This Bedtime Routine Printable will help your kids establish a successful independent bedtime routine! Available completed or blank, so you can customize it to fit your needs.
This Morning Routine Printable will help your kids establish a successful morning routine before school! Available completed or blank, so you can customize it to fit your needs.
A simple cleaning checklist for kids that help make it easier than ever! Just print the simple printable Kids Cleaning Checklist Printables and provide them with the appropriate cleaning supplies and off they can go!
Last year, I had a little breakdown moment where I realized I needed to get more organized with my house-work. I felt like I was doing laundry every day and somehow the shirt my kids wanted was still not clean when they wanted it! We all know that kids don’t fully understand how time–consuming house-work and laundry can be. For me, that needed to change (and fast)! It was time to get my whole family more involved in the laundry process! So, after a few months of trying different strategies, I feel like I figured out The Best Laundry System for Families and I hope it helps you and your family too!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kids II. All opinions are 100% mine.
Hey friends! Today I’m sharing a car themed reward chart that I originally designed for a friend and then I used it with my middle child (who is now 6) as well! I decided to print a new copy a few weeks ago, because I needed to help my daughter find a little motivation and I thought this would do the trick!
During the week it’s just me and Dylan at home and for the most part she’s an angel (read: no brothers are home to fight with). The only problem is she thinks she and I need to do EVERYTHING together! Including picking up after her, going potty, etc. I really needed her to start finding some motivation to do some things on her own.
I’ll eventually design a more girl themed printable, but she loves cars and Go Grippers, so I figured this works for now. And I’ve never shared it here on OTBM! You’ll find the download link at the bottom of the post! Here’s how I utilize the reward chart:
One thing you will want to make sure you preface to your kids is that you decide when the reward is earned/given. They are not allowed to mark the chart or add a sticker without you saying that it’s okay. In the beginning, as they are getting used to the system, I may allow them to complete it a little faster. Especially the very first time. This way they learn the whole reward chart concept. But, now that I’m a few weeks in I’d say that Dylan will take about 2 weeks to complete her chart each time.
Also, sometimes they will ask if they mark their reward chart for something they’ve done. Sometimes I will say yes, but not if they’re asking too often. I will just remind them that I get to choose when a behavior earns a mark.
Together choose the end reward.
This could be a dollar amount, a prize or reward. Because of Dylan’s age (3), she chooses between a prize or reward. But, with my son we eventually transitioned to prizes or dollar amounts, so he could save up for something that cost a little more.
My friend recently allowed her son to earn the Oball Go Grippers™ Bounce ‘N Zoom Speedway™ by completing two charts! To make this work, instead of having 1 chart hanging up, she taped two next to each other! It worked great!
This toy is so fun! I wish it was around when my kids were little! To be honest, when my kids are over at his house they have no problem playing with it!
His favorite feature is the claw that will reach down, grab the toy and then drop it on the bounce pad! Plus, the speedway has two ramps and multiple paths, so the kids love just having cars zoom down the raceway!
The entire collection is genius if you ask me! You know those balls that have the holes in them, so that babies and toddlers can grab them easily? Well, they designed this entire toy line after them! You really can’t find anything like it out there!
It helps those little developing minds using their imagination and play for hours!
You can buy the entire collection at Toys R Us. They have lots of different options: Oball Go Grippers™ Bounce ‘N Zoom Speedway™, Oball Go Grippers™ Vehicle Assortment, Oball Go Grippers loader ™, Oball Go Grippers dump truck™, Oball Go Grippers car carrier ™, Oball Go Grippers Race Cars™. You can shop this collection easily on Kids II too!
Reward behavior or actions that are above expected behavior.
My kids don’t get a sticker for doing things that I expect or their regular chores! Obviously, this is different for each of my kids, depending on their age.
For my daughter, cleaning her room up when asked would be a great accomplishment. Before using the chart, she would whine some and then come and beg me to help her. So, if I ask her and she does it without complaining and on her own, then I’m super stoked and I would allow her to mark a spot on her reward chart!
However, for my older son, that wouldn’t be the case. He would get rewarded for picking up his room without being asked. But, not if I have to ask him to do it.
Praise their good behaviors and accomplishments.
Kids love and NEED to hear acknowledgement of their good choices! So make sure to praise when they do good!
Also, make sure when they complete their first reward chart that you explain to them that that their reward is because of all their good choices and behavior!
“We get to have a fun date night, because of all the good choices you made to fill up your reward chart!”
Also, I never take away a mark or sticker for a bad behavior! I want to keep the chart a POSITIVE thing and if they are always feeling threatened that they could lose a mark, then they may lose the motivation to keep trying for them. Plus, they earned that mark. It’s theirs to keep!
This needs to be something that your kids can expect and rely upon you to remember! Otherwise, they won’t stay motivated!!
Now for the download!
Don’t forget to check out the Oball Go Grippers Toy Collection! Every home with little kids needs it! There isn’t another toy line out there and your kids will love this for a long time!
Back to school is in full swing at my house! This year I really wanted to simplify our homework routine by making sure that all the homework items are easily accessible and organized! Our evenings get busy between homework, soccer and Taekwondo. So, I created this super fun Homework Station with Rolling Cart for my kids!
They generally do their homework at our kitchen table, which is right by where the cart is parked, along with our other storage cabinets. But, sometimes they like to do homework at our kitchen bar, and this way they’ll be able to roll the cart over with them!
Here are the items I used to create the rolling homework station:
- Rolling Cart – I already had this one, but Office Max has tons of utility carts that would work awesome!
- Perch by Urbio Starter Kit – we bought two and LOVE them!
- Lined Paper – my kids use this to practice spelling words and for writing stories.
- Plain Paper – my kids use this when doing math homework
- Tape Dispenser and Tape
- Kids Scissors
- Glue Sticks
- Pencil Sharpener
- White Boards & Dry Erase Markers
We ordered any items we didn’t already have on hand from my favorite store for my Back to School shopping – Office Max! I know I’m not the only person that feels like a kid in a candy store when they are purchasing office supplies! There is just something so fun about it! Office Max has not only everything that me and my kids need, but the items we want! We love all their colorful looks and especially their stylish organization items!
Our favorite new item from Office Max are the two Perch by Urbio Kits, which we placed on the corner walls, just above where the Rolling Cart is parked! That way we had some cute little storage areas for the kids scissors, glue sticks, calculator, pens, and stick pad! It also gave us a fun area to leave little notes or add additional storage later if needed! The Perch system can be put together however you want and they have some many options and sizes for the magnet containers!
One the top level of the cart I put the lined paper (most used), pencils, tape dispenser and stapler!
On the middle shelf I put the pencil sharpener, crayons and plain paper!
On the bottom shelf I put their white boards and file folders! We use the file folders to store work that they want to keep. These fun file folders (along with the notebooks) come from their Divoga – Gold Struck Collection from Office Max!
The other cabinets are great storage for some of our other art supplies and kids activities!
The first cabinet holds our preschool activities for my daughter, the spelling drawer holds the items that we’ll use to help with practicing spelling words! If my kids are having a harder time with a spelling word, we will pull out stamps, letter cards or letter dice and give them another way to practice them!
The second cabinet holds our coloring books, sticker books and color by number books! Along with all our crayons, markers, dry erase markers (& crayons), colored pencils and pastels!
All and all the homework station and rolling cart have been a hit! My kids love working on their spelling words and sight words there! Let’s hope this excitement lasts for a while!
This post brought to you by Tide® HE Turbo Clean™. The content and opinions expressed below are that of Over the Big Moon.
We’re about a month into summer and I’ve been pretty happy with how our morning routine has been going. We’ve been using Lisa’s Daily 5 Routine that she posted about last year! However, I feel like even with our morning chore time, I am drowning in dirty laundry! Each of my kids are going through like 3-4 outfits a day between play clothes, swim suits and pajamas! I swear every day has felt like laundry day the last month! Last week I decided it was time to introduce my (almost) 7 year old to our washer and dryer! Today, I am going to tell you how to teach your young kids to do laundry!
Aside from the fact that I wanted some help, the other reason I chose the laundry for him to help with is because it has been my biggest battle with my boys! It seemed like I was either finding my boys clothes in their laundry basket (even though they were not always dirty) or just sitting on the ground either in their closet or next to the tub & shower!
Here are the steps I followed when teaching him:
Step 1. Create a child-friendly laundry area. I decided in the beginning to only have him be in charge of doing him and his brothers laundry. I purchased 3 stackable plastic bins for like $3 a piece. They stack in their closet and they collect the laundry in the main top bin. To make the laundry room more child friendly, he’ll grab the step stool out of the kids bathroom (which is just across the hall), so he is able to reach the tops of the washer and dryer easily and reach all the buttons.
Here are the items that are a must:
-A detergent with an easy pour spout or pods like Tide® HE Turbo Clean™
Step 2. Teach them to sort the dirty clothes. The boys collect their laundry in their closet, excluding towels, throughout the week. So, when it’s time to sort clothes, he goes and retrieves the sorting bins from his closet. He takes them into the hallway outside the laundry room and sorts them there. He sorts them into 3 loads: whites, darks, jeans/shorts. He also knows that their church clothes are washed separate. But, they aren’t washed every week, so when he has to clean those, he just sets them aside.
At the time he sorts I have to do the following:
-Check all clothes for any spots or stains that may need pretreatment (especially the jeans and shorts for grass stains).
-Check pockets for any items that may have been left in them.
The first few times that they are sorting, you’ll want to explain why it is necessary to sort the loads (that different colors and types of laundry are washed in different temperature of water).
If your child is going to be doing all types of loads, make sure and cover these other rules:
– Check tags in clothing for any special washing requirements. Such as: dry clean only, wash inside out, etc.
– Managing load size
Step 3. Teach them to use the washing machine. Every washing machine is so different, so you’ll have to customize your instructions based upon your machine. Make sure that they take the time to go through all the settings, buttons and explain how they all work and what they mean!
Talk to them about the best choice of detergent. I’m a Tide® HE Turbo Clean™ fan myself! Tide® HE Turbo Clean™ detergents save time and water using proprietary, quick-dissolving Smart Suds™ technology. Do you feel like your wash loads are taking too much time? It’s most likely the extra SUDS in your clothes that require your HE machines to run additional rinse cycles.
Make sure you educate the kids on how to follow the recommended dosing instructions by matching the detergent amount with the load and soil level! Generally the drum of an HE Machine is 4x larger than a traditional top loader, so naturally your loads are going to contain up to 40% more dirt!
Step 4. Teach them to use the dryer. Start by explaining what all the buttons and knobs are and what they mean and how to turn them. Then show them the lint catcher. Explain that this should be cleaned with each load.
Step 5. Teach them how you’d like them to fold the clothes. In our home, we remove approx 1/3 of the load at a time and fold it on the master bed. While we are folding the first part of the load, we turn the remaining clothes on the “fluff” cycle. Then we remove the remaining laundry in stages and fold it.
Take the time to show them how to fold all the items. Here are some key points:
– How to turn socks, shirts, etc right side out.
– Pair socks
– Lay t-shirts out, so they won’t wrinkle.
– Pair pajamas
– Folding shorts & pants
Step 6. Show them how to put the clothes away properly. I instruct my kids only to take one pile at a time, otherwise items end up being put away sloppy!
And, that’s it! Don’t under estimate your little ones! I have been so impressed with my son! He’s loved having more responsibility and he is now a laundry pro! It’s so nice to have him be able to do at least some of the laundry in our house! Plus, he’s always great to include his 5 year old brother! I’m sure by the time he’s 7, he’ll be a pro too!
Now ready for a laugh? I love this video – I seriously want to cheer with them! Be like these moms take back control of your laundry by trying Tide® HE Turbo Clean™ and save yourself up to 25 minutes cycle time!
Disclosure: If you use laundry pacs or pods, note that children should never handle on their own. Keep these in a space where they are not easily accessible. And lastly, children should always be supervised when dealing with chemicals.
* This post was originally published in May 2015 and has been updated with more detailed step-by-step instructions and new pictures.
These Pre-K Chore Charts are something that I used with all 3 of my children when they were younger! The post was quite outdated, so I decided to give it a face lift! I still really love these designs and know they can be every beneficial to those of you with littles!
The design is very simple — each day is on a separate page with a separate checklist. These were designed for kids that are ages 2-4, so majority of what is on the completed Little Kid Chore Charts are practical skills that young kids need to learn to do individually. I also like to have at least 1 skill on each day they can do from start to finish without any help on there! As they get older, they should be able to do more and more independently each day.
When I first created these Nathan was 3, I believe. Below is a run down on the tasks I put on the Pre-K Charts way back then and how/why I incorporated them into his Chore Charts:
Also, I personally laminate all mine and then put magnet strips on the back. I put all of them on the side of the fridge and the appropriate day Chore Chart on the front of the fridge. Then, my kids used dry erase markers or dry erase crayons to mark off the job once it is completed! That way he is only looking at the tasks that I expect him to complete that day and no others!
Click the buttons below to download the completed or blank PDF’s of the chore charts. They’ll download as a ZIP file.
As a reminder this printable tag is for personal use only.
If you love these printables, then don’t forget to pin the image below!
I’ve been in my new house a month now and finally feeling somewhat settled. I still have lots of decorating and projects, but at least there aren’t any boxes left (aside from in the unfinished basement). This last week I was feeling overwhelmed trying to keep up on the daily chores and pickup, so I decided it was time for me to figure out my new cleaning schedule for this house.
Back in 2011 Lisa shared a Mommy Chore Chart that I started using almost immediately. I loved the simplicity of it and how it looked on my fridge. It was easy to reference being that it was in the heart of my home – the kitchen. I wanted to add a little color to it, so I put together this little version of it! It’s really similar, just has a title and the added color.
For mine – I took it into Photoshop and typed my chores in it. Then I printed it on cardstock and laminated it using my Scotch Laminator! If you don’t want to type your chores on, you can also just write the chores in. Or even laminate it and then use a dry erase marker to write the chores on each week. After it was laminated I put a couple magnet strips on the back, so it easily can be removed from the fridge when needed.
Right before the move – our old vacuum died on us. I have always loved Shark Vacuums – they are so easy to handle and they are so light weight! I have loved my new vacuum – the Shark Rocket. It is (like all Shark products) very light weight and SO easy to handle.
But, my most favorite feature is that it has the ability to be handheld! YOU GUYS – I no longer hate vacuuming my stairs! I literally would skip them sometimes in my old house… that’s how much I hated them! haha!
I also love how it tucks under my couches so well. Our main level has all wood floors, so there gets to be lots of dust, crumbs, etc that collect right around the edge of our couches. I love that I am able to just vacuum under the edges. I also love the under appliance wand that is available! How freaking rad is that? We all know that we should be cleaning under our appliances like 4 times as much as we are.
Also, because it’s so small you can store it almost anywhere. I have mine storing in an oversized utility closet. In my old house I stuffed it into the front coat closet. Which mean every time I would get a coat in and out I had to make sure not to knock the vacuum over. So, I have really enjoyed the storage option.
If you have a lot of carpet in your house, I would suggest upgrading to the Shark Rocket Pro. It has a larger tank, but still with all the premium tools! You really can’t go wrong with any Shark products though!
Have a great day!
Shark Vacuum provided me with compensation for this post. However, as always, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
I have a confession, I am in a war against stuff! It started about a year and half ago when my husband took me to the Philippines to visit where he lived for 2 years. I had seen poverty before many times, but nothing like this. They had less “stuff” than anyone I have ever known – and we are talking they were missing the basics like their own bathroom or kitchen! Most of them had coconut shells they burned on dirt floors for their kitchens. I was so humbled and yet I have never seen happier people!
I have thought about that so much since being back. I have come to believe that for most of us, it’s the buying that we are addicted to and no matter how much “stuff” we have it will never seem like enough. It certainly won’t bring us happiness. I am trying to learn to be content with what I have and teach my children the same thing.
We have been in our house for 5 years and it was beyond time to purge. John and I are both pack rats so it’s not a great combo! We started in the garage and went through every Tupperware and every shelf and we were amazed at the things we were finding. The more we cleaned out the more I wanted to get rid of. Here is what our yard sale pile looks like so far:
Yep, it’s a little embarrassing! I feel 30 pounds lighter in a week. Best diet ever But really I just feel less weighed down with stuff. Here are some principles I learned along the way to judge if something is a keeper or a tosser:
- Get rid of organizers! It’s the whole “if you build it they will come!” If you have empty containers you will find things to fill them with. The same goes with bulletin boards or magnet boards. Sure they help you to organize, but it also makes places to keep stuff. I had 4 magnet boards in different rooms of our house and when I really looked at what was on them it was junk! We just didn’t need it, but since I had a place to stick it I kept it. The same goes for unnecessary flat spaces. If you have them you will put things on them!
- Don’t feel guilty about getting rid of things that have been given to you. First they don’t have to know and second it’s not their house. Let the guilt the go!
- Keep things that are memorable, not things that just belonged to someone who was memorable. My Mom passed away 2 years ago and I am her only daughter, so I got a lot of her things. At first I wanted everything that was hers because I loved her and missed her. But, now I am ready to wean out the things that I really don’t need. I realized that I was holding onto things because I was trying to hold onto her. When it came to things that belonged to her I thought about the items I had that really mean something; her wedding ring, her grandmothers chair, her hope chest, her china, etc. I found that when I thought about what was really meaningful, I didn’t feel bad about letting other things go just because they belonged to her.
- Get rid of things that have “potential.” If you find something with potential ask yourself if you can accomplish it that month. If not – say no to potential!
- Just purge and purge only. Don’t get distracted by reorganizing and redecorating. Purging is a mindset and you can’t interrupt that mindset or you can get distracted. I have been going through one room at a time and leaving what I am keeping behind in the room, but not necessarily in the right place. I advertised a yard sale this weekend so I have a deadline and can’t back out now. Once everything is gone after this weekend, I will take next week to go back through and get things organized really well.
- Ask yourself if you have used it lately? CDs and DVDs are great, but when was the last time you reached for them? We usually use Netflix, iTunes, and Pandora instead. Ask yourself when looking at something when you last wanted something like that, did you go looking for that item specifically? If not, why are you still holding onto it?
- If it’s a seasonal item, ask yourself if you used it this last season? If not – toss it!
- Get rid of things that don’t work! We had heavy stoneware dishes that were super heavy and got hot in the microwave (but the food didn’t). Bad choice with kids! I am going to sell them all, but I didn’t have the money to just run out and buy all new dishes in the meantime. Instead I bought just enough to get us by right now and will add one piece each grocery trip until I get a full set. I bought simple white Corelle and I cannot believe the difference in our cupboards! It is neat and tidy with things we actually use and need! Plus it looks way better!
- Don’t be afraid to get rid of the things that cost you money. My kids playroom was out of control! It was packed with so many toys they were not playing with. All the toys were just causing clutter, chaos, and conflict. Some of them were things they got this last Christmas. It breaks my heart to see all of the money we spent on toys and then just sell them off for pennies…heartbreaking! But the reality is if it isn’t functional, why would we keep it and inconvenience everyone in the meantime. Advertise on Craigslist the week before your yard sale at higher prices and if it doesn’t sell then you won’t feel so bad getting rid of it for less on Saturday. Here is what we took out of our playroom:
It is a little shocking when you actually see the pile building up and it’s a little embarrassing too. I had no idea how much we had accumulated! I must be a better organizer than I thought! I feel so much better and hopefully after this weekend I will be a little richer too!
Want to keep up with us at Over the Big Moon….click here to learn how to subscribe!