I wish I could post some finished pictures of my projects down-stairs, but I can't because I'm yet to get back to work down there. I have been focusing on a good week of school instead, although we did take time out this morning to clean the hamster cage in an effort to keep the entire basement from smelling like hamster.
These are the pencils that I replaced in the pencil cup today. Ben sees it as a challenge to use the smallest pencil possible until I confiscate it and throw it away, before it gets stuck in the electric pencil sharpener. There was also not one eraser in sight, although I did find several thrown in the bottom of the cup along with a plastic penguin. Pencils are one of those items that I took for granted growing up as an only child (until 11). My children regularly have conflict over pencils. They argue over who had the pencil first is, who used up the eraser and who left in on the ground when I want it picked it up. There is more pencil drama in our house than I could have ever dreamed of as a child. (I at least have arrived at the point of realizing that conflict is an unfortunate part of large family life; the first several years I seriously wondered what was wrong with my children.)
When we aren't doing school, we are making food. It's really remarkable how much food we go through! I am naturally a thrifty person, but I don't have time to shop multiple stores, so I mainly stick to the Commissary and Costco and we are spending a decent mortgage every month feeding our growing brood. I don't think it's going to get any better, so I'm just thankful that we are able to provide so well for so many. There's no starving kids at our house and that is really one of the biggest blessings that we take for granted in this country.