Well my wedding is less than two weeks away now and there is a list a mile long of things that still need to be done. I am, of course, not doing them.
The thing about getting married for the second time is that it is a lot more difficult to plan, prepare, complete the millions of tasks when you have a child. Though there are many supposed moral reasons why people should wait to have kids until after marriage, I think the real reason is that it’s damn hard to get anything done when you have kids!
Seriously! I can barely get the dishes done on daily basis because of Connor!
So when Connor was sick for three weeks straight and missed 10 days of school, my wedding planning got derailed. Thankfully I have my faithful minions (aka my family and friends) who are kindly helping in whatever capacity they can. Or that I will let them. (I do feel strangely reluctant to burden anyone with work when I know how impossible it is to get things done with little ones clinging to you as you try to move the wet clothes from the washing machine to the dryer…or maybe that’s just my house?)
Now that Connor is back at school I should be tackling the dozen or so items left to get done in the next 10 days.
Instead, I’ve spent my morning researching and creating a picture chore chart for Connor. Yay!…?
The other thing about getting married for the second time is that you don’t get to stop being a parent, your child still needs all of your attention (and your special needs child needs all of your attention and then some). Since I’ve set the tentative goal of mainstreaming Connor one or two days per week for next fall, we are really focusing on doing whatever we can to prepare him for a mainstream preschool classroom. That means he’s socializing more with typical developing peers, we’re making him use more and more of his language at home, and we’re trying to create an environment of responsibility. Part of that means Connor has to complete certain tasks each day (mostly without complaining).
To get him used to the idea of responsibility and having to do things he doesn’t necessarily enjoy, we instituted a chore chart. I made a worksheet of chores with bubbles next to it to be checked off. And while Connor enjoyed getting check marks, it didn’t really appear to be making an impact. So I’m taking another approach.
Choice boards worked really well for us in the past when we were developing Connor’s language skills. He was able to look at the pictures and either point or pick them up to communicate his needs, while still focusing on developing the words these pictures represented. I’m hoping that using a pictorial chore chart will have a similar effect.
With a little research I was able to find these from Over the Big Moon:
The author provides blank versions so you can add your own clipart/images and text. Obviously I’m not going to have Connor read 15 minutes every day (since he can’t sit still for 15 minutes) but I am going to have him brush his teeth!
To customize your own charts visit here: http://www.overthebigmoon.com/pre-k-chore-charts-free-printable/
I’ll post an update once I get the charts on the wall and we can see how Connor is progressing!
Until then, I guess I’ll get to some wedding chores before my actual wedding is here…maybe.