The Job Jar

16 Jan

In this very busy world we live in it is very difficult to do 2 very important things …

ONE … keep the house clean … it is a large project that either NEVER gets done because it is just too daunting … or people do it all for 14 hours on ONE day and because it takes so much energy it doesn’t get done again for a long time OR it falls on just one person … either Mom or Dad and that is not fair …

… AND TWO … keeping the family together as one unit for some good family time …

Here is a good way to keep the house clean AND have some team family time as well … The Job Jar!!

This is a way to keep the house clean by doing some of the housework in bite sized pieces 4 or 5 days a week and keeping the family together in a fun way … (YES … it can be FUN!!)

First … you will need to find 2 somewhat LARGE and specific Jars to be your JOB JARS… we found these at Wal-Mart a few weeks ago during the Christmas clearance sale for only $0.74 each:

snowman jar

You need to somehow label the jars to keep the rooms separated – the rooms that you need to clean from the rooms that were recently cleaned. You can print out labels, or hand write them, and attach them to your jars:

Job Jar Labels

Then … you will need to list all the areas of your house and write them on small papers like “names in the hat”… since we are just a family of three, most rooms in our house are listed separately on pieces of paper.  The only rooms that are combined are “Laundry Room/Half Bath” since these rooms are each too small to house 3 people for any length of time… Larger families may want to have more room combinations so the family can split up appropriately.

areas for job jar

… Kitchen … Kids Bedroom … First Floor Bathroom … Master Bedroom … Closet … Family Room … Basement … Study … Garage … etc.

Print these out and cut them up into individual pieces of paper:


Put all these in your FIRST JOB JAR …


The plan … each night someone in the family pulls out one of the papers … i.e. Family Room … then the WHOLE FAMILY gets together to Clean THAT area of the house … THE CATCH IS … for just 20 MINUTES … (so NO MORE ROLLING OF EYES like in the past when the “when are we going to be done” comments start flying) … any family can be together on a project for 20 minutes a day for 4 – 5 days a week … BUT the cleaning MUST end at 20 minutes … put on a TIMER if you have to but must keep to that timing … then that paper goes into JOB JAR # 2 … the next day we pull again … i.e. Kitchen … and so on …


This way it is a manageable time to blast through an area for a bit … doesn’t have to be perfect because in about 2 weeks that area will be hit again when it is pulled from the OTHER Jar … and SO ON and SO FORTH

Once JOB JAR # 1 is empty … the house is in pretty good shape AND we then move onto JOB JAR # 2 … by the end of JOB JAR # 2 … the house is clean … the Family has had some good and goofy stories (it is amazing how spending 20 minutes a day together this way can solidify the Family) … then we rotate from JAR #1 to JAR # 2 …

Do a LITTLE EACH DAY and over time … The house stays in good shape AND the FAMILY Stays in GOOD SHAPE!!


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