One of those Minions Spoke Up…



Last week I blogged about my “Minion Kids” who learn to do chores at a young age. While I was writing that post, my 15 yr. old daughter, Courtney, was standing over my shoulder making hilarious comments. It seemed “only fair” that she would get to “add her two cents” worth … so here’s my original post with her comments added in Bold Red Italics!


A couple of days ago a couple of my friends tweeted that they wished they had her own minions to do their work or go get  sushi.  I cracked up… and then realized… wait a minute… I DO have my own minions!  My kids!

Not exactly minions, but just as cute (well, cuter cuz they’re real) and they actually do my work for me… OK, they do SOME of my work for me! “We do all of it; let’s not kid.”

You see, since they’ve been young I’ve included my children in the many tasks that a family & home require. “Training them young helps them to grow accustomed to a life of labor.” As toddlers & preschoolers they LOVED it cuz it made them feel grown up. As they get older it kinda loses its appeal, but it’s already a part of their lives, so they do it anyway. My little minions are good workers… and don’t usually complain too much.

When they’re really little they’d do things like take the napkins to the table, put the shoes in the closet, toys in the box , etc… “Meanwhile I could get important things done such as painting my nails, talking on the phone and sleeping.”

Preschoolers & Early Elementary children clear the table each meal, push in the chairs, empty small garbage cans, dust window sills, feed the dog, put their clothes away, bring laundry to laundry room, clean light switches, even vacuum, etc… “They can also clean the chimney, scrub your feet, and park the car.”

Upper Elementary & Jr. High kids can do the dishes, dust furniture, pick up dog do-do from the yard, prepare simple meals, clean bathroom counters, sweep floors, do their own laundry, clean their rooms, wash & change bedding, etc… “Basically you could send them off to college now and they’d do perfectly fine.”

High School students can really do just about anything around the house, and should. Includingcook meals. “But in all reality, they’re too busy doing everything else in the entire house to have time to do your only job.”

Hmm, now that I’m looking at this list I realize two things

1. I sound like a total slave driver “Which is completely accurate.”

2. With all this help (I have 5 kids) I should have a spotless house.  Oops, I just made myself look bad!  ha!  “But you all like the idea of slave children already so it doesn’t matter!”

Being an effective parent will always require work… in every area!  But teaching our kids to help out not only gives us opportunity to have minions – hee hee- but to develop responsible, hard working kids that don’t expect everything given to them or done for them. “They’ll even offer to make their own soup if they ever come down with influenza.” It takes time to teach them… twice as long as if you were doing it yourself… but in the long run it’s well worth it… for THEM (and you, too).

So, Gru, get to makin’ that chore chart. “And don’t forget to make them massage your head, re-shingle the roof, make Christmas dinner, and wash your delicates.”

(I laugh every time I read this… she’s hilarious!)



Overrun with Imperfection


I haven’t worn make-up for 3 of the past 5 days.


Our dining room table looks like a library threw up on it.


My electronics (aka computer, phone, internet,etc) forced me to rename them.


I’ve stopped for groceries 3 times but have failed to buy 1/2 of what’s

actually written on my list, so our meal choices are pretty dumb.


My oldest daughter leaves for school next week…

(no words about that right now, just feelings)

The cute wedding gift-project that I want to make for our friends

is taunting me because I haven’t started it yet, and because my

ideas always exceed my talent & time.


My neck hurts from leaning over school books & planning lessons.

Our lovely house cries out for a good clean, but remains unheard.

The beautiful summer weather is gone & I’m kinda mad at myself for

not being excited about fall. It’s my favorite season, but I’ve apparentently

forgotten that tid bit of info about myself.

We start home school in a few days  (I know.. it’s later than you) and

until I get it all planned out… things are kinda rough.

If you’re feeling poopy about yourself;

Incase you’ve been reading all those blog sites where everyone is

creative, gorgeous and totally organized in every area…

Well, ha!

Let’s be REAL.

Real stuff happens.

And sometimes we just hafta say it… and laugh. It just helps!

(And, saying “poopy” a few times also proves quite helpful, too!

A lesson I learned in Jr. High!)


Here’s the little phrase that God’s been reminding me this week:

Grace in Action

My imperfections are huge.

My Jesus is “huge-er” and totally Perfect in every way!











I stopped apologizing

Years ago I decided to stop apoloizing… for the condition of my house, that is.

I was a young Mom at the time & went to the home of a friend who had a

gorgeous house that was “magazine” perfect. But throughout out time together

she continually interjected apologies for this and “sorry about that” and fusssed

around putting “junk” away.

Hmm, not only was her house nicer than most people I knew, but her “junk”

would’ve put most of my nicer things to shame.   And if she thought her

beautiful home was “a mess” then she better not EVER come to my house.


That was it. I decided on that day that I would NOT do this to anyone else.

My house is the best I can do with the time & resources God’s given us.

People will always be MORE important than “stuff”  and my house serves

our needs… we don’t serve it.

So, when I’m tempted to relapse and start apologizing I remind myself that:

1. My house is a gift (& I totally LOVE it, by the way)

2. It serves me, not vise versa

3. People are my priority

4. Vain “apologies” are really selfish complaints

5.  I don’t ever want to make someone feel uncomfortable

6. A gracious hostess is far more noticeable than a few dusty corners