Monday is the day Abigail and Nathalie start their college classes. Hannah has decided to not show goats and will sell some of her does to Abby after she completes the 4-H year at the Big E. With these changes we've had to create new schedules for the chores.
Abigail and Samantha now have the bulk of the barn chores. Hannah will take on the majority of Nathalie's house chores with Rachel being her assistant. Nathalie will still be making the menus and grocery lists, but Rachel and Hannah will be doing the cooking. Abby and Nathalie's chores have been relegated to either early morning or later evening jobs.
With new routines always comes some "re-training". It means I have to spend time calling kids back to the job to correct or complete something they have missed. I truly hate that part. I feel like such a nag, but being they are "kids" they are experts at finding ways to cut corners or avoid the "nasty" jobs.
I do eventually lose my cool. For example yesterday, after two weeks of threatening about the state of one bedroom in particular, I announced that I was gathering up the trash bags, the febreeze, a broom and dustpan, and windex. It only took them seconds to figure out what I was about to do! The mad dash to the bedroom began and they began scooping up all those things that they deemed had value before I could toss them in the trash bags.
For the next several hours we worked on cleaning the room. My way. They prefer their way. You know: dirty clothes get shoved under the bed to hang out with the dust bunnies, clean ironing gets tossed onto the floor of the closet, clean laundry gets piled on top of the bureau or the foot of the bed, papers and notebooks get shoved onto the bookshelves, and closing the curtains takes care of the smeared windows.
New routines are for me too. I am trying to spend more time in the sewing room and more time reading books. Sam finished my Adirondack chair a few months ago and the front deck is the perfect place to read and drink my coffee in the morning. Eventually I'll need a book light to be out there as early as I am, but by then it will probably be too cold anyway.
I really do enjoy this time of year. Changing routines seems to invigorate and motivate us all to accomplish more and evaluate our priorities. The lazy, humid days of summer are nearly over, and while I have enjoyed our slower pace this summer, I really am looking forward to leaving this summer behind us and pressing onward into the busy time of fall and December activities.