“. . . therefore I quote” Sandra Felton

I read, therefore I quote.

The chaos has gotten pretty unorganized around here lately and I needed a little something to remind me of the how and why. To that end, I’ve been reading Sandra Felton’s Organizing Your Home & Family. She also wrote the “messie” books, like Messie No More: Understanding and Overcoming the Roadblocks to Being Organized and When You Live with a Messie.

“When we think about how well we’re doing being a Manager, our focus is often on the house. We need to turn the spotlight on the family instead.

Keep a daily vision of your son or daughter as a capable, mature adult. Hold on to it even in the midst of the turmoil of family life, childhood complaints, and parental discouragements. Those ever-present chores will still need to be done. In the long run, they will be done better, more smoothly, with better flow when they are done in conjunction with your child-development plan.

. . . The successful Manger takes training and support for the children seriously. Sure, it is easier to do it yourself without hassling the child or to take the heavy handed approach and send the child to his room to clean it alone, threatening punishment if he doesn’t do it immediately. Both of those are tempting but they do not meet the child’s needs.

The successful Manager understands that:

1. Skills must be taught carefully. First, show how to do it. Then, do the job with the child several times. Finally, give the full responsibility of the task to the child and stand by for inspection. Check from time to time to see that things don’t slip.

2. . . . Break the task down to simpler parts. Draw or take pictures or write out steps as reminders.

3. Working alone is hard. Work together with the child or get him a partner . . .

. . . Raising a child to adulthood who is responsible in work and able to maintain a loving relationship takes a lot of time, training, attention, patience, and vision. That’s what this is all about. Is it worth it? You betcha it is.”

My poor family. I’ve been lax. But I’m back. They will soooo tire of hearing me say things like:

“Don’t put it down, put it away.”

“Leave no trace.” (copied from Cub Scouts)

“Okay, everyone, ten minute tidy.” (adapted from “10 second tidy” on Big Comfy Couch)

“Make a plan.”

“What’s your plan?”

“Set the timer.”

“It’s 7:30. Electronics off, please.”

“Do 13 things.” (to 13 year old FavoriteSon)

“Do 8 things.” (to 8 year old PinkGirl)


“. . . therefore I quote” Thursday: If you have a quote to share from something you’ve read recently, feel free to comment and/or include a link to your own “quote” post.

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3 thoughts on ““. . . therefore I quote” Sandra Felton

  1. My mom never said stuff like that – she wrote notes. Dishes, laundry, bathrooms, salad and then a mention of when she thought she might be home. 🙂 Because we’d stretch out our free time as long as possible and get the chores done just seconds before she was due to arrive home.

    Her famous phrase (which I use all the time, as well) is:

    Would you like to…take out the trash? do the dishes? clean up the bathroom?

    My husband always says no, but that was never an option in our house lol

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  2. Ten minute tidy???? How cute but I am partial to seventeen minute siesta.

    Heidi – Cute is right, so you know I didn’t make it up. I stole it from a kid’s show called Big Comfy Couch. A clown with a doll would trash a room by pulling EVERYTHING out of a giant couch and at the end of the show, she would do a “ten second tidy.” Ten seconds didn’t really work for me. (by JSM)

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