I was folding some laundry yesterday morning when I remembered a trick my mom used to pull.
When I was quite young, my mom used to dump clean clothes on a bed and we would play a game.
The game was this: Find and match all of the socks. It was a fun game with clear directions and a tangible goal. You won when all of the socks had the right partner. Little did I know that I was doing chores.
Of course, the trick was on her, because I was terrible at the Sock Game. I still am. It isn’t that I have no interest in matching socks. It is simply that I am colorblind. So if socks happen to have the same dimensions and designs aside from their colors, blues and blacks, browns and blacks, blues and browns all tend to find themselves in inter-color relationships when I fold the laundry.
The solution to this inherent problem has been to have sock pairings that are completely different from each other. I’m pretty good when it comes to identifying different patterns and materials. But back to the game.
I don’t think I realized that I was doing chores until I was in middle school and the general distrust of authority that comes with adolescence caused me to second-guess the motives behind this innocent game. I still had to match socks and do laundry, of course, but now the magic that made the task fun was gone.
Would that chores were still fun!
Now that I am a parent, I’m looking forward to making chores into games for my girls. If I can trick them into doing housework AND enjoying it for at least a few years, I’ll take it.
Any great ideas on this, blog readers?