Something startling has come to my attention. Maybe I’ve been in denial all this time, but the truth is, I have let my children down – once again proving that common sense is not that common.

I have gone out of my way to teach my children the important things in life: 

  • Be kind 
  • Do your best
  • Napkin on your lap

Apparently, there are some things they don’t know. I assumed they would absorb it. Even ducklings figure things out intuitively! 

I gathered my ducklings, Sam and Lindsay, for a family meeting.

“There seem to be some basic things you need to know how to do, based on the fact that you don’t do them. Follow me; we are about to have a tutorial on basic household tasks.  Our first stop is the bathroom.” I guided them.

“Please don’t tell me you’re going to toilet train us?” Sam asked with his sly grin.

“Very funny – no, but this is called a toilet paper roll, and this is a holder. Look, this part is spring-loaded. Just slide it through the tube part of the roll, push the ends in, then release it into this holder. Anyone want to try and do it on your own?”

Lindsay sighed, “Mom, really? I’m busy.”

“Don’t worry, this won’t take long. Volunteers?” I asked again.

They glared at me.

“Now, some people care which way the paper on the roll is situated, pulling down in the front or the back. I do not. Just put it on the holder, not on the ground or the counter.”

They rolled their eyes and nodded at the same time, hoping that would hurry this along.

“Next, this is a toilet seat. Simple enough: up for boys, down for girls. Universally left down when done. 

This,” I reached down to the floor, “is a wet towel. Hang it up. Very simple, fold it in half and sling it over this rod. Questions?”

Sam shrugged, “How long is this going to take?”

“A while. Volunteers? No? Alrighty then, follow me to the hall closet.”

The five-foot walk seemed like a hike up Kilimanjaro with all their huffing and puffing.

I opened the closet door and pulled out the plastic tub, “This is a laundry hamper. Dirty clothes go INside the tub, not outside on the floor in front of this convenient door used to hide the dirty clothes. In other words, no more dirty underwear for all to see, please. Additionally, it is not a depository for clean clothes instead of hanging them up. Questions? Good. Follow me.”

I led them, well, pushed them into the kitchen.

“This is a dishwasher, not me. You load it with your dirty dishes. Yes, you can do it, it’s very easy. Some of you have ventured out enough to put your dirty dishes in the sink, this is just one more added step. The tricky part is lining the plates up on the bottom, cups and glasses on top. Don’t just throw them in and hope the plates line up. Look, here are these little guideposts to help you. Anyone want to try?”

“Thanks, Mom, we get the message,” Lindsay said.

“Good, next week is personal hygiene.” I had a malicious grin.

Live with Waffletude

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