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Sunday, January 4, 2015

I'm SUPER Excited!!! (Can you tell?)

Happy New Year!
It was a non-exciting ringing in of the New Year around here! Littlest Little was the only one who went to a party- and I fell asleep 13 minutes before the ball dropped.

There weren't any big resolutions this year around here either. I've done that in the past, and I feel like I stick with things a little better if I don't make it a resolution! (Kind of like reverse psychology. On myself.)

Over this break though, I have noticed that we have gotten away from all of the pitching in the way that we used to. It's kind of hard to make that judgment when you have wrapping paper and decorations and new gidget gadgets everywhere, but trust me, I could tell.

We were riding in the van one day and I was thinking of how I could get The not so little Littles to participate like they used to. It used to be so easy. We had charts and allowances. Ya'll, it used to cost me mere pennies to get clothes picked up and towels folded and put away. Pennies!!

And then there were cards that moved from one side of the chart to another. We also had magnetic charts. As they grew, they outgrew them. Times changed and before I knew it, I couldn't get a toilet scrubbed for a shiny quarter anymore. (Who am I kidding, right?)
So I thought about how to incorporate something that is relevant to them. And I saw it. Right there in front of me. It was staring me right in the face. Actually, it was stuck to my shoe on the floorboard. . It was the receipt from grocery shopping. On the bottom of the receipt was a QR code. And I had a brainstorm!!!!
I thought, "What if I turned their rewards for chores into QR codes?" That way they would have to scan it to find out what their reward was. I figured this would be "fun" for them. At least I was hoping it would be. I needed a motivator.
I put out the ALL CALL to my IG PEEPS to try and think of some rewards that would be either FREE or VERY CLOSE TO FREE- remember, there are three of them. And it can get a little pricey when they all have their hands out! My IG buddies did not fail me! They helped me think of some great ones, and I added a few of my own.
Let me tell you the amount of stuff that DID NOT get done while I was working on getting this set up for us!

I had to  figure out how I was going to use the QR codes. I created them (video below), moved them to one sheet, printed multiple copies, cut them out, and then placed them in these trading card pages. I got them at Wal-Mart (near the binders) for $3 for 10. I added a link to those codes at the bottom as well. Now these are motivators for my children. Yours may be different. And that is why I added the video, so if these don't work for you - you can make your own. (Not trying to insult anyone's intelligence, but I am SUPER EXCITED about this and I want it to be SUPER EASY for anyone who is eager to try.

There are nine slots on each sheet. So I came up with nine rewards- one is actually a repeat . I added them to six different trading card pages, that way I could pull out a different one each week and no one would try to memorize where certain rewards were. Every Friday, they will each get to pick two codes to scan from the same page. These are the rewards that are there:

*Kitchen Chore Freebie (whatever their part of the kitchen is- one is unload, one is load, one is trash & table)
*One FREE chore day (The whole day - don't even have to participate in the "Shared 15")
*Mom will do one load of my laundry (they all do their own, so this is a treat for them)
*One app- ($1.99 or less)
*One Itunes song (there are two of these on this board)
*One book, magazine, or poster ($5 value)
*One 1-day Redbox Rental (movie or game) (My IG friend, Sarah, reminded me of all the codes they send me for free rentals all the time! Cha ching!)
*$3.00 (There is gas station about a mile from the house, the boys like to ride their bikes up there together and get candy or a soda sometimes- so the cash is good) 
(And I plan to update and change out rewards as I think of different ones)
They each have to participate in the "Shared 15" each day- plus they have to keep up with their own rooms. This will make the H-E-double-hockey-sticks that is "Saturday Cleaning" a breeze!

Now, What is the "Shared 15"? That is something we started a couple of years ago- and it WORKED. For a long time. And then life got crazy and shifts changed and it stopped being enforced.
So it is BACK!
IMMEDIATELY following dinner (before the dishes are done) everyone has to devote a SOLID 15 minutes to a SHARED LIVING SPACE. The living room, bathroom, dining room, hall, stairs. Anywhere that we all SHARE. This keeps everything so tidy and makes it really nice when the kitchen is finished and we can all relax. To make it a little easier to remember and to be fair (so no one gets stuck with the toilet all the time, I numbered three tasks and rotated the numbers. )
So there is a number next to their initial on each day. 
No. 1 if it's one of the boys, they have to Clorox wipe the toilets and sweep the bathrooms, if it's Chickadee, she'll have the vanity and trash.
No. 2 We only have carpet in the bedrooms, so you have to sweep the dust bunnies away.
No. 3 "Stuff Patrol" means- going through the living room and dining room and looking for and putting away things that don't belong there. Books, shoes, bags, toys, cords, etc.
And there are 5 of us- so that's 75 minutes of work EVERYDAY. That's - hold on let me get my calculator- 525 mins a week - which is the same as almost 9 hours of cleaning a week!!! AMAZING!

I filled out the whole month!

I wanted them to be as excited about this as I am, so we went ahead and "scanned" on Friday- just 1 though, since it was only half a week.

She was excited about her game (app) and Littlest Little is very excited that I did his laundry today! (And she is older now, but is playing the game to help keep the boys motivated. Plus, who doesn't love free stuff??!)
A note about Apps and iTunes songs. The Apps are easy to "gift"- they just need an email address. The songs, however, you have to make sure that they select a "single", so that you can "gift" them just the one song- otherwise you will end up sending them an entire album.

List of QR Codes rewards I am using.
And now for the video- Good Gravy.
While you are watching, you can play a game called count all the "uhs" and all the times Squirrels says "Super". WTH? I NEVER say "super"! I guess I was just "super nervous".
I know this was long post- can you tell I am pumped about this? The possibilities are endless!! I sent the list to several IG friends this week, I just couldn't keep it to myself! I hope they are all able to incorporate it somehow! I would love to hear feedback or even see how this works for your family!

Happy Scanning,


  1. This is absolutely amazing! I love your idea of the Shared 15 and will be starting that today! I'm also going to give the QR codes a try, too. Thanks for sharing how you are motivating your kids and keeping your house clean with all of the help!

    1. You're so welcome!! The Shared 15 (when it was consistent- like it will be again) is a beautiful thing!! It really is nice to sit and relax and enjoy the tidiness at night! And no one is bogged down with a huge chore each night ! You'll love it!!!

  2. AWESOME! Why wasn't this around when I had a youngster at home. Do you think it would work with husbands? :) JK, mine's a peach and helps a lot.

    1. Hey......there's an idea!! I'll start hiding the adult frothy beverages and he can try to scan for one !!! Ha ha!!

  3. What an awesome idea and a great way to get kids interested in doing their chores! You so smart ;)

  4. I LOVE, LOVE this! I want a free hug from Squirrels! I think this is an amazing idea! You should be on a morning talk show, pitching this idea. For reals. My kids are gonna hate you! ;)

    1. Oh, just think of it- Squirrels on Film!! What would I wear!?!? Ha ha!! Thanks for being so excited with me!!

  5. Pure genius! Seriously! LOVE IT! Although my kids are too old now (nothing motivates them to help!) I bet this could be adapted into class in some way Thinking, thinking! Thanks!


  6. It’s my first time to visit this site & I’m really surprised to see such impressive stuff out there.


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