Recently an acquaintance of mine adopted a sweet baby girl from Liberia who will turn one next week. In addition, she has a three-year-old daughter, an almost-two-year-old daughter, and just gave birth to another precious daughter on New Year's. Phew. Makes me tired just thinking about her!
Melissa emailed a mutual friend asking what jobs she could give to a young lady who was staying with them for two weeks to be of service to her family. We thought of the obvious (meals and laundry) but came up with several other suggestions that we thought might give Melissa some peace long after Brianna had gone home:
- Have her do all the laundry
- Have her make all the meals
- Do you have closets or drawers that need to be tidied? Clothing that needs to be tried on and then passed down or packed away?
- Create (with Brianna's help) a list of meals that she can make and freeze for you. Let her spend an entire day cooking and stocking your freezer with meals, muffins, homemade granola, anything high-protein for you to grab.
- Have her make homemade baby food to freeze into ice cube trays and then labeled in Ziplocs.
- Have her make cookie dough and freeze it into balls for you and Matt to have a late night snack when the girls are all asleep!
- Have her pre-make some snacks for the girls into little baggies that you can just grab.
- Any mending you haven't gotten around to?
- Have her put together church outfits ready to grab (dress, tights, hair stuff) for as many weeks as you can.
- Have her create Ziploc bags of crafts or activities for the older girls that you can just grab for them to do.
- Have her stock diaper bags for you. Even just gathering things and putting them into paper bags that Isabelle can then pack the bag from.
- What can you see being difficult for you once you're on your own with all the girls? How can Brianna help prepare you for those things?
So now, how can you make this list work for you? Is there someone in your life who has been asking to help but you didn't know what to tell them? Are you expecting another baby and could you do some of these things yourself in preparation for the days ahead? Preparation is often a key to household peace.
Originally published on January 17, 2006