The Star Chart + Quick Wallet DIY // Chore System for Young Kids

Dave and I decided that when Milo entered Kindergarten would be a good time to begin having him learn how to manage a little bit of money. We initially planned to just give him a small weekly allowance and teach him about taking care of it, saving some, and spending wisely. Around when he started school this year I also realized that both Milo and Eliot were old enough to do some regular chores around the house. They had been keeping up with some routines: bedtime stuff, picking up the playroom, etc. but none of the expected chores were written down, and I hadn’t yet branched out into letting them help with some of the bigger household duties, like cleaning the floors and bathrooms. With these two progress milestones on the horizon, I thought combining the chores and the money into one simple system would be the easiest way for us all to keep track of these new little responsibilities. What I came up with after looking a bunch online and talking to some good friends is The Star Chart, a simple chore and earning system for young kids. If after reading you think this will work for you too, click HERE to download the free star chart (without names, of course).

Star Chart and Wallet- Chore System for Young Kids- One Little Minute Blog-6 Star Chart and Wallet- Chore System for Young Kids- One Little Minute Blog-8 The system is simple, and has some features that I couldn’t find in any of the other charts and systems I found. There are four expected chores each day in our house: The boys must stay in their beds all night every night and make them in the morning, put all of their dirty clothes into the laundry hamper in their room, clear all of their used dishes into the sink after snacks and meals, and pick up all of the toys in the play room every night before bed. For each day that each of those tasks is completed consistently, they get a star. Additionally, there are two other ways to earn bonus stars. They can complete any or all of the extra chores listed down the right, like vacuuming the floor, wiping a bathroom counter, or loading the dishwasher. And, they also get extra stars for having a good attitude, and being kind and happy, listed on their charts as “choose happy!” which is our family theme for this school year. I’ve noticed that since we’ve put the star chart into practice, the boys are more likely to remember their daily chores, and more eager to help with additional ones, as well as to choose happy. They’ll often do something nice for each other then tell me and ask if that mean’s they’ll get an extra star! Star Chart and Wallet- Chore System for Young Kids- One Little Minute Blog-1 Star Chart and Wallet- Chore System for Young Kids- One Little Minute Blog-2-2 Now for the translating of stars stickers (which I choose specifically because they’re always available and inexpensive in office supply) into money. Each complete column of daily chores is worth a quarter. That means if they complete every task every day in the week, those chores are worth $1. If they miss a task one day in the week, that column doesn’t earn money that week. In addition to that, each bonus star on the page is worth a quarter. If the daily chores seem minimally funded, the bonus stars definitely make up for it because they can add up fast! Our chart has nine bonus chores and the happy stars are unlimited. Milo has averaged around $4-5 per week so far and Eliot just less than that. I purposely kept the daily chores at low earnings value, because those are expected daily tasks. They are the minimum necessary to contribute to the family’s household maintenance. The extras teach real work ethic because they can really start to earn by taking extra opportunities to help. On occasion I mention that one of the extra chores needs doing and offer it to them before I take care of it myself, but they, Milo especially, is hyper aware of when he can gain some extra stars. It’s been really cool to watch.

Read on to learn how to make the simple star wallets with an illustrated tutorial. Read More »

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Potted Succulent Favors + Tips for Caring for and Propagating Succulents

Succulent Favors-One Little Minute Blog 1 Today I co-hosted an Austin, TX themed baby shower, and I was so excited to put together some baby potted succulent favors to give to the guests! Cacti and succulents for a major part of the local landscape here in central Texas, and are some of the more hearty and simple plants to grow, both indoors and out. And of course, succulents have been all the rage for a couple years now, so they fit the current design trend as well. These beauties are especially fun because I grew as a succulent propagation experiment that I started around a year ago, and these little guys are the first baby plants to be large enough to give away.
Succulent Favors-One Little Minute Blog 12 Succulent Favors-One Little Minute Blog 10 Succulent Favors-One Little Minute Blog2 Succulent Favors-One Little Minute Blog7 Read on to see the cheeky care cards close up, and to learn a little more about my tips for caring for and propagating succulents!

Read More »

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DIY (Interior) Knee Patches

Around age three, my kids started coming home from preschool with holes in the knees of their pants. I have not idea how it happens, but almost every single pair of pants that the boys have worn over the last couple years have ended up with at least one, and sometimes two knee tears. And now with Plum still crawling, I’ve got holes in all three kids’ pants! In the past, I’ve just let them be and them cut the pants completely off at the knee to be worn as shorts in the summer, but since summer is still a couple months away, I thought it was time for me to start repairing and reinforcing the knees of some of their pants. I don’t love the look of knee patches, unless they were part of the original design of the pants. So, I am patching from the inside, with easy DIY knee patches.
Inside Patches-One Little Minute7

You’ll need some fabric and thread that pretty closely match the original pant color, unless you want a statement, which could be a fun design element. I also used a gluestick rather than pins to hold the patch in place while stitching, so you may want to grab one of those too.  Inside Patches-One Little Minute

Read on for a full step-by-step to patch from the inside! Read More »

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Vignette Floral First Day Dress

(null) My good friend Laura Gunn sent over a preview of her new line called Vignette and I just fell in love with some of the gorgeous springy prints. This one jumped out as a favorite (probably because the base colors are chartreuse and olive which I am somewhat obsessed with–see here, here, here and here…). I used this darling First Day Dress pattern by another good friend Dana, to make this tiny peplum top for Plum.  (null) I knew that I would be in trouble when I had a little girl, because I’d want to have all the fabric and sew all the things. I’ve been making girls dresses  and costumes since before I even had my boys, and it’s still so much fun. Now that Plum is almost walking, I am excited to make her some things that will actually be seen as she toddles around, rather than dragging on the floor, or swaddled up in a blanket.
(null) (null) The project was simple ( I love Dana’s patterns for their ease of use!) and turned out adorable. I have a couple more projects in store for some of the other prints in the Vignette line that I am excited to finish up. I think I should plan on always working with spring florals in the end of winter, because it brightens up some of the dreary days! And this little miss Plum brightens up everyday.

 

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Heart Attack Valentines Dinner

(null) Growing up, Valentine’s Day was always celebrated in our home with a fun, decorated family dinner (usually a breakfast for dinner). My mom would keep the siding doors leading to the dining room closed until it was time to eat, then surprise us with the special room and a book for each of us kids on our plate. (null) (null) Dave and I love keeping that tradition alive. Every year is a bit different, but some sort of fancy or fun dinner with a boon for each of us. This year, right after Christmas I noticed some shiny red wrapping paper on clearance and thought it would be perfect for Valentines Day. So, with one roll cut into hearts our dining room is ready for the holiday of love! It was super cheap and easy, but has big impact with hearts all over the walls and ceiling. (null) I love a little romance, of course, but Valentines Day has always felt like a family holiday to me, and I hope my kids feel that, too! (null)

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