I loooove organizing books and love to know how big families cook, menue plan, routines, store their clothes, etc.. We've got 5 kids ages 6 and under, 4 boys and 1 baby girl. Are you guys new to Albuquerque?
I'll post some ideas soon. Right now baby wants to eat!
Hi! Welcome to Albq. Somehow I have survived 9 children! My first instinct to your toothbrush dilemna is "Use the same one"!!!!! Which has happened. We've never figured that one out. I do keep a zip lock of all the miscellaneous toothbrushes I find and when they are begging me for one pretty much their only choice is to go dig in the bag and then boil it! Most of teens now hide theirs so I'm just working with 4 little ones now. Somehow like i said, we've survived, with a lot of memories and laughs! I think a clean, non-contaminated toothbrush was worth more than money at times! (like matched socks and car keys).
I only have 3 kids and sometimes keeping things straight is still a challenge. I write their names on their toothbrushes with a sharpie. Toys are all community property (legos in one bucket for all to play with and they have bookshelves in their room for special toys and books). Two of the boys can wear the same size clothes so they all go in one closet and they just share. Still working on organizing... it's a never ending job it seems.
We have 8 kids and a long time ago I decided to color code the kids. I just used their favorite color and it has been assigned since. That is the color of their towel, dishes even the activities written on the calendar. It has really made life simpler. It is immediately obvious who has not loaded their dishes in the washer, and it has been so effective with the towels that I can't tell you the last time there was a towel on the floor!!!. There was some expense at first but not too much and it was worth it. they each have two towels, two plates, two bowls, and about four cups. It makes them accountable for their own stuff. I also teach them to do their own laundry before they are about 10 and they are responsible for it after that. Saves a lot of work.. When they were littler I would mark their initials on their socks and underwear to make the sorting simpler. They are each assigned one night a week to help make and clean up dinner and one night to clean the table and vacuum. This cuts down on my work considerably. Also, on the towel thing, it is better to install hooks in the bathroom than towel bars. You can fit a lot more towels in the space. You can get some cute ones at Lowe's etc. I got some that have a picture frame above them and put their picture in it so they know which is which. you could do the same for coats. We keep most of the toys in the playroom and the bedrooms are for special stuff only since there are so many kids in each one. i also hang up all of their clothes except underwear, socks pjs and shorts. It keeps the clothes neater and they don't pull everything out of drawers looking for stuff. It also makes it easier for me to pull out stuff that doesn't fit any more. Everyone has chores everyday and big ones on Saturday. It cuts down on my work load.
Somewhere on these boards is a great post by ShariL about how they manage their household. I'm sorry I don't remember the thread title. Maybe something about clutter or chores? Search for that, as I thought her system was well explained and really worked for them. Until then, I'll just be learning more here, too!
I did not realize there were so many large families on this board. Maybe we should have a big family night out or something! This is great. I have been suffereing with lost toothbrushes. I keep a stockpile of new ones in MY bathroom and it seems like at least once a week some is asking or one. Whereis yours I ask, I dunno is the reply. I recently decided to move all of the toothbrushes to my bathroom and we brush together at night. Each kid has a different colored brush and they remember which one is theirs.
My nemesis is laundry and was even before I had 5 kids. It is ALWAYS on the floor somewhere. Usually the hall outside the laundry room or on MY bedroom floor. The problem is not getting it washed but getting it all put away. Recently I've had them dump clean loads onto my bed. Then at 8:30pm e all go upstairs and watch a show or movie on my bed while the laundry gets folded and put away. This helps but if we got just 1 or 2 days without moving it during the day it piles up really fast.
Good luck and looking forward to hearing more ideas.
That is why I hang everything up. I installed a dowel in the laundry room and everything goes right on hangers as it comes out of the dryer. It really makes a huge difference on this subject. that and make the older kids do their own