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Taking Kids on Errands

taking kids on errands

These days it seems like I am constantly running around to various appointments, practices, lessons, and errands. And since I have teenagers, I can easily leave them in charge of the little ones at home and go to these things without loading everyone into the van.

I only realized how often I was doing this when my 5 year old asked sadly, "Why do you always leave me home when you go places?"

That's around the time I decided to make this little rotating chart to signify whose turn it is to go with Mommy on her errands.

Now whenever I jump in the van to pick up some supplies for a project or take someone to soccer practice or a dentist appointment, I say, "Whose turn is it to go with me?" and I have a riding partner.

As I'm sure you can see from the photos, it was super easy to make this rotating chart. This one literally took me less than 5 minutes. (I'm sure you can make yours much cuter!) Here's how you can make one too.

  • Cut a strip of construction paper about 3 inches wide.
  • Write the names of your children, evenly spaced, on the strip. (My strip includes 7 children.)
  • Staple the ends to make a loop.
  • In a contrasting color, cut out a square about 3x3 inches.
  • Cut 2 slits 1/2 inch from each end of the square. Stop cutting the slits 1/4 inch from the end.
  • Put the square on the loop to show whose turn is up.
  • Move the square to the next name each time you go on an errand.
  • Clip to fridge so everyone can see it.
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  1. Hannah Deacon says:

    This is the best idea ever!!! Using this for my kiddos. We have a Reagan also:)

  2. This is a great idea. We do something similar, but with only three kiddos, we have a simpler system. We assign “a day.” So, whenever something special comes up, like running an errand with Dad to Home Depot, we say, “Whose day is it?” The kids automatically know whose day it is (it’s a popular topic of conversation around our house), so the lucky one hops in the car. On your day, you get all the special privileges (dibs on the best seat in the car, the popular toy, the best plate, whatever), but you also get extra responsibilities (Mom’s helper: unloading groceries, helping with dinner, unloading the dishes, etc.)

  3. With soon to be 15 kids at home, I’ve been trying to think how to do something like this. But I was thinking to take one big, one middle, one little when I go places. My thought: take 4 small containers (icing containers come to mind). Label each big, middle, little, and done. Each time I need to run to town, then draw a name out of each container to see whose turn it is. Then the names get put in the “done” container. Re-divide the names back in the appropriate container once everyone has had a turn. Drawing the names makes sure it isn’t always the same 3 or 4 going along. That’s all I’ve got for now but I’m glad to see I’m not the only one trying to come up with ideas like this.


  1. […] told you yesterday about how I try to take a different child with me every time I run an errand. Now, I’ll explain how I give each child an opportunity to have a special time with mom twice […]

  2. […] Penny’s life coaching is directly responsible for me making this rotating chart to show whose turn it is to go on errands with Mama. […]