What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood

a podcast with Margaret Ables and Amy Wilson

Month: December 2016

Episode Six: Chores

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This week we’re talking about chores: do you make your kids do them? If so– how much, how frequently, and do they get paid for their troubles?

Experts say that kids’ chores are worthy in and of themselves, teaching kids things like teamwork and self-esteem. In other words, it may be worth the extra effort to wheedle your kids into loading the dishwasher, rather than just doing it yourself (even if that is WAY faster).

But in a recent survey of one thousand American adults, while 82% of them said they did chores growing up, only 28% said they make their kids do them. Time to put those wee moochers to work!

In this episode, we discuss
  • how to overcome the many obstacles between assigned chores and done chores
  • the power of branding. Who wouldn’t want to attend a “super fun laundry party”?
  • chores any kid will get into doing (relatively speaking)
  • when pay-for-play chores are a good thing
  • how to let go of the perfect in order to give our kids more ownership

Here’s some helpful (or funny, or both) links:

How do chores work in your family?
Are your preschoolers lugging firewood?
Are your teenagers doing light household repairs? or anything at all? And does their allowance depend on it?
Tell us in the comments- we’d love to hear from you.
And if you’re enjoying the podcast, please give us a rating on iTunes! It will really help more people find us. Thanks.

Episode Five: Handling the Holiday Craziness

handling-the-holiday-crazinessEach December 25th, most moms look at a living room full of scattered wrapping paper and vow to do less next year. Then Black Friday rolls around. But can you really downshift on how much Santa brings once a baseline has been established?

This week Amy and Margaret talk about managing the holiday craziness. (Disclaimer: for both of us, that does mean Christmas, although we feel the pain of the Hanukkah Harriets out there, we really do).

Here’s some of what’s discussed in this episode:

  • how to get your kids more involved in holiday preparations— at any age
  • the very appealing “three kings, three gifts” rule
  • how to carefully consider any new holiday “traditions” before instating them (we’re looking at you, Elf on the Shelf)
  • how the Laws of Holiday Attrition can work in your favor
  • how Amy uses this cookie recipe every December and it’s easy and amazing
  • what to do when your spouse gives you a Pajamagram

And here’s some enjoyable holiday reading to accompany your (spiked, we hope) eggnog:

Christmas countdown calendar from “Good Day, Regular People” offering children helpful daily hints like “Practice saying this: ‘Happy Christmas morning, most beautiful of mothers!'”

from Victoria Fedden, Christmas in the 70s vs Christmas Today 

from Amanda Morin at understood.org, the “Want, Need, Wear, Read” strategy to manage kids’ Christmas lists

from Sarah Zadok, on Chanukah: why “the act of giving speaks louder than the gift itself”

How do you handle the holiday craziness at your house? Have you successfully shrunk your to-do list to a manageable level? Tell us how!

 

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