Organizing Household Duties

Updated on April 02, 2010
A.K. asks from Racine, WI
8 answers

My husband and I both work FT, I work 3 12hr nights a week. He is starting to help out more around the house but says he doesn't know what to do unless he has a list. I have been trying to come up with some way to make a list off the computer (maybe a calendar or something that shows what to do each day that I can add to as things come up). I have tried a few different things but nothing comes out right and I do make handwritten lists but I want something more permanent we can look at day to day. What works for your family? We have 2 young kids (3 yo and 6months).

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answers from Indianapolis on

My husband and I don't really have a list of chores. But, as we've gotten older, we've worked into a routine. We also have 2 young kids (2 and 3.5)

I do the laundry unless there's a reason he needs to (such as a child wetting the bed).
He does most of the vacuuming, taking out the trash.
We both like to do yard work, so we split that up pretty evening.
I usually mop, but he'll sweep the floors as needed.

He'll usually ask about needing help with things - however, he won't notice that the counters in the kitchen/bathroom need to be wiped down. Just doesn't register with his brain.

If you can come-up with a weekly list of chores that each of you are willing to take on as your normal routine and perhaps print out a list to put on the fridge once/week, that might help you out while you're working.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

I love the book "Sink Reflections" that helps with household organization and chores. It has you break your home into regions and then gives a daily and weekly schedule to follow to keep things clean and uncluttered.

There is a related website, with instruction on how to put together a Control Journal -

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

YEAH! This is one of my FAV topics...getting families organized! My company helps families get systematized!

Family Matters – Our Top 5 Organizational ideas

1. Weekly Menu Planning

If you fail to plan you plan to fail! Food matters.
1. Make a list of EVERYTHING you and your family like to eat (including eating out). Everything, right from eggs and toast to a 5 course family dinner.
2. Separate it into categories, breakfast, lunch and dinner.
3. Using a simple table (word or excel can set them up) create as many family menus as possible from the foods that you like to eat. Just fill in the boxes with the foods you like to eat.
4. Type them , print them, put them in kitchen.
5. Every Sunday (or whatever you day you choose) pull out a menu, (already pre-made!!), make your grocery list and VOILA you have a weekly plan for health.

2. Picture Perfect
For busy families on the go PICTURE PERFECT is the best way to stay organized. Now you have to start from a clean space, so take the time to clean an area to your satisfaction. Then TAKE A PICTURE. Post it somewhere you will see it and every time you walk through that space you will see the picture and if something is out of order, you will know immediately and it will take you a quick minute to put it back in place. **This is GREAT for kids rooms, family areas and kitchen cupboards.

3. 10 Minute Tidy
Everyone in the house picks a room in the house, they can pick different rooms or all work together. Put on some fun music, set the kitchen timer and GO! But only for 10 minutes. Then STOP!

4. Priority File Folders
Every piece of paper that comes into the house either gets filed in “file 19” aka the recycle bin or it gets separated in into Weekly File box (this box has file folders labeled Monday to Saturday. As soon as any piece of paper comes into your home, prioritize it. Determine when it has to be addressed by. If it needs immediate attention, put it in the next day file, if it can wait, pick a day this week that it can go in. Then take 15 mins every day to empty the file folder.

5. 15 Min Financial Fitness
Spend just 15 mins a day getting your finances in check. Input your receipts, balance your check book, pay bills etc. JUST 15 mins a day! Even with one day off each week, you will have a total of 90 mins of financial focus. You will be on track in NO TIME!

Getting organized is KEY! Your kids are young, set up the system now and you will be glad you did!

Family Success Coach


answers from Memphis on has been a life saver for me and my family. You can make a control journal (they explain it there) and then everyone knows what you to do at any given time and how to do it.

The 3 year old can be helpful too.



answers from Boise on You can either look at the whole site, or focus on the control journal.



answers from Dallas on

My husband doesn't share the responsibilities, but I do this for myself so I don't feel overwhelmed. (Also it gives me a sense of satisfaction to see what I've done, and a sense of ?? that he can see that I've been busy too.)

I have a dry-erase calander in my laundry room.
I have my basic chores written on there by day.

Monday - Laundry & Bathrooms
Tuesday - Kitchen, mop, etc.
Wednesday - Nothing
Thursday - Dust & Vacuum
Friday - Laundry & Bedrooms
Saturday - NOTHING
Sunday - Husband's work clothes

I add & shift things as necessary and also jot appts down. Playdates, important notes, dinners, etc.
It works well for us!!

Good luck.



answers from Victoria on

I clean my kid's bathroom during their bath. I'm still supervising the cleaning, but he is learning how to do it himself. I clean my bathroom before my shower on Sundays & Wednesdays. As for hte rest perhaps the flylady website will help you. My son cleans his own room, puts his dirty clothes in the hamper, cleans his plate & glass from the dinner table for breakfast, lunch & dinner. He puts his coats on his coat rack & he lines his shoes up in the utlity room on his shelf. (we take our shoes off there so it saves on sweeping & carpet cleaning.) He cleans up his art/creativity area when he is done. These are his chores that have him be responsible for his space like all members of a family should. Oh. once clothes are folded he puts his away. I still hang his clothes though. Hope this helps you.



answers from Medford on

Hi! I am interested in your question and your answers! My youngest of eight just went to college and we always shared responsibilities and I made lists and bulletin boards and calendars. Right now, there are three of us with my husband, myself, and one of our kids that isn't married yet and we enjoy having him for supper each day. He trades me my cell phone costs for supper (his idea!). I am doing almost all the housework and trying to figure out our present scenario a little better. They are both pretty busy so I usually don't mind but on the dishes, I hope they will each do one time a week. Sometimes it works out. Sometimes I ask, sometimes not. It is ok. I let them go until a good time to do them. I carry a google calendar set up for the week printed off (one page I can fold up in my pocket) and love it - and write things I plan for the week there. I was printing off a month and just printed off the rest of the year, in week form, and am enjoying this order!

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