Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Amanda Lamb: The cost of doing business

Posted October 26, 2014

I’m fed up. I have a hard time understanding how no one can find the dishwasher when its right next to the sink. Every night I come into the kitchen to find an assortment of dirty dishes in the sink, some left over from breakfast.

I figure the three very capable people I live with, my husband and two daughters, must share the same genetic component when it comes to locating the laundry chute. For some reason, their clothes end up on the floor instead of in the laundry pile at the bottom of the chute, yet the chute is just steps from each bedroom.

Then I recalled growing up with my mother who tended to do the chores before I had a chance to get them — like making my bed, picking up laundry and putting dirty dishes in the dishwasher. I remember thinking that if I just wait a few more minutes, she’ll do it and I won’t have to.

Is it possible my family subscribes to the same mindset? They know I am type-A and will go ahead and do it, so they don’t have to.

So, this week, I am trying a little experiment. I posted a sign above the sink that said anyone who leaves an item in the sink owes me 25 cents. So far I have only made 75 cents. I call that progress!

Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including some on motherhood. Find her here on Mondays.


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  • snowl Oct 27, 2014

    That works well for you until the family notices that you go back into the dishwasher and move the items around to satisfy your type A personality....;-) Am I correct?

  • Jason Galarneau Oct 27, 2014
    user avatar

    I deal with the same thing at my house. Get tired of asking. Sometimes it is easier to just do it myself. Kids will be gone in another 3-4 years. I'll miss them.

  • Knock Oct 27, 2014

    The implied "me" makes the sign funny to me. Do you owe yourself 25c if you leave a dish? :)

  • lec02572 Oct 27, 2014

    Might want to put a lock box by the sink and laundry chute for the 25 cents. Good luck.

  • Marsha Smith Oct 27, 2014
    user avatar

    A friend of my Mother had basically this same problem getting her husband to put his dirty clothes in the laundry hamper. So one day after asking him for the umpteenth time to please put his dirty clothes in said hamper, she told him that she was only going to wash the clothes that were in the hamper. When wash day came, that is what she did. A day or two later, she got a call at work from her husband - "I don't have any clean clothes!" She said "Well, I washed what was in the hamper." I think he got the message.