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Old 07-17-2013, 12:19 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by MinnieLovesMickey12 View Post
I haven't left my kids alone when they are awake because they are only 14 months apart and sometimes they don't get along so great. The older DD13 tries to boss the younger DS12 around. Even if I just go lay down fora nap for 2 hours one of them usually ends up coming to my room to tell me something that happened.

I don't think they are mature enough to be left for very long by themselves.

But they do ASK to be left at home all the time. They hate going on errands and shopping with me. I may try letting them stay home for an hour or so next time I go run errands and see how well it goes. I know the youngest will tell me exactly how the oldest acted while I was gone.

They both now have cell phones. (Just got them this year)

But they will be told no cooking or do not answer the door while I am gone.

So we'll see if I am brave enough to try it.
When they ask to stay home alone, I would remind them why you don't. Also, IMO by giving the youngest an audience in which to tattle on the oldest, you are perpetuating the tattling problems. I'd put my hand up with a firm, "I don't want to hear it, sort yourselves out" type of response. My brother and I are 8.5 months apart, I am very familiar with sibling issues

Also at 12 & 13 there is no way they should be disturbing your nap to tattle on each other unless the house is on fire or someone needs a trip to the ER.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:21 PM   #17
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DD is 18 and she can do everything but load the dishwasher or do dishes, apparently.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:22 PM   #18
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Well mine is 28 so he is mostly independent, I still cut his meat but I am afraid he will choke otherwise
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:23 PM   #19
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My kids are older now, but they started staying by themselves at around 10 and babysitting around 13. They were much better at doing chores when they were smaller than they are now. I am ready to give middle DS the boot he is such a slob. He is my cook. All the kids started cooking at around 13, but they would rather cook for themselves and rarely cook for the family. Middle DS has had kitchen jobs, so he is actually becoming a good cook, just not for us!

They all started doing laundry at around 14, and they had to learn to steam/iron their own clothes at the same age. I don't iron anymore so if you wanted it ironed, you did it yourself. They also each got their own checking accounts at 16 so they knew how to do banking before college.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:29 PM   #20
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This will probably vary depending on what type of kid you have. My 3 year old does more to ease my workload than my 7 year old. I started requiring things of DD7 early on, and so now she sets the table, makes her bed, cleans her room, and things like that. DD3 saw her big sis doing it and won't be outdone. She does the same things. Usually, it's a fight for who gets to set the table.

But actually, DD7 has no interest in doing things for herself, where DD3 wants to do everything on her own. DD3 will get herself ready in the morning and set up her stuff for school the next day, fix lunches and snacks, dust the house, sweep the floor . . . she's 3 going on 13. I pretty much can't do anything around the house without her stepping in to do it first.

SO I say, "yes, sweetie, if you're a good girl, I'll let you clean the toilet."
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginny Favers View Post
This will probably vary depending on what type of kid you have. My 3 year old does more to ease my workload than my 7 year old. I started requiring things of DD7 early on, and so now she sets the table, makes her bed, cleans her room, and things like that. DD3 saw her big sis doing it and won't be outdone. She does the same things. Usually, it's a fight for who gets to set the table.

But actually, DD7 has no interest in doing things for herself, where DD3 wants to do everything on her own. DD3 will get herself ready in the morning and set up her stuff for school the next day, fix lunches and snacks, dust the house, sweep the floor . . . she's 3 going on 13. I pretty much can't do anything around the house without her stepping in to do it first.

SO I say, "yes, sweetie, if you're a good girl, I'll let you clean the toilet."
I remember the helpful days - its a very distant foggy memory but I kind of remember bits and pieces
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:41 PM   #22
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My kids are on the younger side- 4 and 6, but they are capable of doing so much- it amazes me!

Cooking: both can use the microwave to make themselves hot dogs and hot chocolate; they can make their own sandwiches; my 4 year old showed us that she can make pancakes (if the batter is already made) and she loves to help make all kinds of things (the 6 year old isn't into helping much in the kitchen); I could see the 4 year old actually cooking/baking on her own in the next couple of years

Laundry: the 6 year old can do an entire load start to finish on his own; the 4 year old can put stuff in the washer and dryer and helps fold and puts her own clothes away

Bathroom: they are responsible for cleaning their bathroom- toilet, floor, sink, and mirror (I will typically wash the tub)

Bedrooms: they are expected to keep their room clean- beds made, toys put away after playing, no dirty laundry on the floor

Both do other chores as required.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:45 PM   #23
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I'm not a parent yet but for me this is what I remember..

I started babysitting at 11- 6th grade
I started cooking in 2nd grade. In 3rd grade we had to do a project where we had to cook a meal for our family and I made beef tenderloin...at age 9. I LOVE cooking
I started staying home alone at 9.
I started doing laundry at 10

I have to say, when I got to college I was AMAZED at how many people did not know how to cook or do laundry. It was astonishing to me. I just always thought this was stuff that was taught while still at home. And I just graduated college so this is recent. My advice....make sure they really know how they do these things before they go to college.

And for the OP...my brother and I are 3 years apart and we have always fought like cat and dogs....however, we always got along much better when my parents were NOT home. You might be surprised on how capable they are of getting along when you are not around.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:52 PM   #24
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My kiddos help with folding laundry, sweeping/mopping/vaccuming, feeding/watering the dog, keeping their rooms picked up, putting away all their own items that they leave around. They are required to clear their plates from the table, rinse them and put them either in the sink or dishwasher. DD(7) is responsible for wiping down the table after meals.

She helps me cook--measuring ingredients/following recipes, about once or twice a week. Both kiddos help me cut up veggies/fruits--with an appropriate knife and supervision of course. I was never taught to cook--anything--and swear that God decided I needed to learn to cook for my family, so blessed me with a son with so many food allergies that I had to learn to cook from scratch. (DH did 95% of the cooking before DS was born.) I am determined that my kids know how to cook.

They love to help clean the bathrooms so I give them a bottle of vinegar water and let them have it. I do go over cleaning from top to bottom with them, but at their age, I just feel lucky that the bathroom is getting sterilized by someone other than me.

I also HATE matching socks, so they get paid $.05 per match. And I don't leave them home alone at their age, though I do take naps. They are required to stay in their rooms and play quietly if they don't want to nap, and only wake me up if there is a fire, they are bleeding or throwing up.

ETA:I only get to nap maybe twice a month. Though I wish it was daily, it's rare.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:53 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wvjules View Post
DD is 18 and she can do everything but load the dishwasher or do dishes, apparently.
I have one of those, too! She's almost 17 and constantly tells me "I'm not 3 years old" yet she doesn't know how to feed the cats. She's grown up, though . I guess she better never have her own pets.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:57 PM   #26
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DD10 started staying home alone earlier this year, but just for a hour every other week. My kids are in taekwondo two days a week and DS gets his allergy shot every other week-- all of those are right after school. DD stays home on shot day to do her homework. This summer, we have left both kids home a few times when we run errands like going to the pharmacy or the grocery. They stayed home for a couple of hours on Saturday while DH and I went shopping. We don't go far from home, though. We are only 10 minutes away when we do leave them. They also have strict rules of staying downstairs (main floor, not our basement) and no eating or drinking. That way there is no choking on anything, and if the house caught on fire they could easily get out.

DD can use the microwave, but DS is too short to reach. I do most of the cooking, along with DH.
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:01 PM   #27
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As for staying home alone, this is the second summer they have stayed home all day by themselves. They do fight when they are not busy, and I do get calls at work on occasion. But most of the time they do o.k. They know that when they are getting on each others' nerves, they need to separate. They are not allowed to answer the door or the phone, and we have several neighbors who are home all day and available to help if they have a problem (called them once when there was a hornet in the house).

I think it would be a perfect time to start testing the waters. Make your rules and expectations clear, make sure they know safety rules, and know that you are not all that far away if they need you.

Good luck!
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:41 PM   #28
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My kids are 5 and 3. 5 year old makes beds, sweeps the kitchen, folds and puts away her own laundry, can make peanut butter sandwiches for lunch, puts away toys, can get little brother dressed but he doesn't want her to, puts away silverware from the dishwasher, dusts, cleans windows. 3 year old can help sort laundry, is learning how to sweep, puts away toys, somewhat get himself dressed, dusts, cleans windows.
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:51 PM   #29
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How big if a mess are we talking after they do a given task?

Mine are six(boy/girl twins) and they are pretty wild so I do supervise them, but here's what they can do with minimal intervention:
Brush teeth(I check after)

Shower

Get dressed

Clean their rooms and make their beds(for the most part)

Sometimes I can get them to fold some clothes


They can probably do more, but I have issues relinquishing control of chores and things like doing DD's hair.
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:54 PM   #30
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My 11yo DS has been pretty limited by being short for his age - I'd trust him to cook on the stove... if he could actually reach the dials. Ditto for laundry. And our gigantic vacuum. And the far corners of his mattress to put fitted sheets on. He knows how to do these things, so he'll be good to go when his reach gets a little longer, lol!

But he can and does dust, empty and fill the dishwasher, gather laundry, feed/water the cat, scoop the litter pan, take out trash, get the mail, help me make salads and cut vegetables, make himself meals and snacks. No set chores with us, either; I just expect him to do his part to help.
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