I’m telling you, this is THE place for fun! We start the day with butterscotch pancakes (the butterscotch chips were just what that ‘hearty whole wheat’ pancake mix needed) and move on to chores.
You would never know it, by looking at them, that one of these, oh so normal, boys does NOT like butterscotch chips. Gasp! Which one??
I keep telling myself that many hands make light work. Over and over. Sometimes I even believe it. What I tell the kids is more along the lines of:
“Clean up and I’ll let you eat lunch.”
“Pick up that marble messed up, Playmobil infested, toy soldier’s rats nest that used to be Daniel’s room and I’ll get out the ice cream.”
“Anyone who wants dinner needs to start doing some serious tidying up.”
I’m all about inspiring and motivating the help. Oh yes, and bribing with food (preferably sugar). That works really well around here.
We didn’t have Josiah with us today so the house felt sort of empty, only 8 children and all. Thankfully Tim worked from home; he helped bring the numbers back up. I’m not saying he’s as much work as a six year old (in fact, hand him a Nerf dart gun and he would certainly give Josiah a run for his money) but Josiah brought his own lunch so things even out there a bit when the dust settles.
Speaking of dust. If I could ever get the house to STAY picked up for a few hours then I bet I could get someone to dust. Have to actually have some surfaces uncovered in order to dust them.
“Two pieces of Dove chocolate for anyone who wants to do some dusting.”
“Tim, don’t trample the children! There’s plenty of Dove to go around.”
Reminds me of that sweet little book that opens with the papa dusting. The clever mama obviously hid the Dove (or even Lindor) chocolates and the papa was searching for it. The dust rag was just a cover. Everything is clear now.
“He screams, she screams, we all scream for Ice Cream!!
It is amazing to me the way we’ve been able to easily slide three extra children into this, some would say, already bursting household. We aren’t getting massive amounts of school done (Joshua, I heard that guffaw) but there’s all sorts of learning going on.
Take, for example, these important educational discussion points.
How much mess will it take before Mom starts pulling out her hair, or better yet the Jelly Beans?
If you buy two bags of apples at 9 pm on Thursday night, how many will be left in the fruit bowl by 3 pm Friday?
If four people ask Mom a question at the same time, who will be answered first? And, if you take someone else’s “yes” for the answer to your question and run off, can you still get in trouble?
How many six minute sprinkler cycles are needed to get all 8 children appropriately wet? What if one child decides to bike ride instead? What does that do to the equation?
If little girls decide to apply bath wash AFTER their bath do they then need a shower to wash off the soap?
See, we’ve got math, home ec, science, history. It’s all right there. We’ve even managed to make sure our Psalms and Proverbs reading fit into the busy schedule. Between chores, food, math lessons and games that is.
Oh, I forgot to mention art. Sarah and Elise pulled out these cool dot art markers yesterday and proceeded to create all sorts of beautiful pictures. Nothing like having some 4 year olds around to set a trend. Today ALL of the big kids (with the exception of Joshua who is just trying to survive the invasion of all these extra kiddos) wanted to do some dot art.
I KNEW that finger paint paper would come in handy some day. My kids like the IDEA of finger paint but not the reality of it. Too messy. They prefer to use paint brushes. Aren’t they sweet, thinking of me and the mess and all.
Well, I know how to make use of a situation. After all, dinner was over and stomachs were full, I needed a fresh motivation tool.
“Absolutely, you can ALL paint with those cool markers…as soon as you pick up the living room, family room and dining room. Basically all the “rooms” on the first floor.”
I was feeling generous and helped with the kitchen.
Although it seems like all we do is clean, we had several outings today. The four girls and I went to the library, Target and the YMCA this morning. They were cheerful little shoppers and we only got one “Are they all yours?” comment.
After our school reading, this afternoon, we also went to the park. We picked up a neighbor child (one of those cute warrior girls from the other day) because there weren’t quite enough kids to make things really fun. Tim helped by ferrying the boys in his car. That 15 passenger van we couldn’t afford last year would come in handy in times like this. Of course, with gas prices such as they are, even if we had been able to afford the van we wouldn’t have been able to put any gas in it.
The evening composed of at least two different board games, some computer action, dolls, stuffed animals, and some ice cream. Oh yeah, the kids had fun too. I snuck off to work on the garage. I didn’t even get any chocolate for my labor. Sigh. My apple was yummy, though, and there might even be one or two left in the fruit bowl.
Tomorrow we’ll round out this group with Elise, Adam and Abigail’s two missing siblings. 10 is such a nice number when it comes to children, don’t you think. We’ve definitely been missing a toddler in the bunch. That will make things MUCH more interesting. Thankfully he comes accompanied by a very capable big sister.
Anyone else want to come and clean, I mean, play?
Project 365 – Day 152