In my experience, one of the more successful ways of guaranteeing something housework-related actually gets done is if Audrey is involved, rather than left to hang onto my legs (literally). It doesn’t make for the most efficient of tasks, but she loves to be mama’s helper — and I love to teach her how she is already contributing to our household.
When making dinner, I try to figure out an “Audrey job” that she can do beside me. Usually it involves washing veggies (bonus: she gets to play in the sink!). One of her recent favorites was snapping the woody ends off asparagus.
She also helped make garlic bread the other night. And wow, was it is the saltiest bread I’ve ever eaten! She was liberal with the garlic salt. That meant both she and Kenji liked the bread but I thought it was practically inedible.
Baking is especially fun for us both; she gets to help pour in ingredients, mix it together, and eat the delicious final products!
When it comes to laundry, Audrey is generally most interested in deconstructing my folded piles. She likes to try on all of the clothing items — anything from her own pants to daddy’s underwear is fair game — and shake the clothes, pretending to fold them. Recently I put her to work matching socks (one of my favorite ways to help my mom when I was little).
Yesterday I gave Audrey her own spray bottle and let her squirt water onto the windows to her heart’s content, then wipe it up with a little cloth. (Unsurprisingly, she was more interested in the spray bottle than the cloth, and liked using it on the floor, chairs, cat, etc. too).
Last but definitely not least: the vacuum! Audrey is both fascinated and terrified by the vacuum. She likes to turn it on, but bolts away as soon as she does. (I don’t blame her — it is really loud!) Generally she is more of my supervisor, telling me which carpet to tackle next. But yesterday she liked using the handheld part. Until it sucked up her shirt, that is.