My five-year-old is usually pretty good at entertaining herself, but today, as happens more and more in the afternoon, she started pouting, “I’m bored.” I threw out ideas, all of which led her to wail and writhe on the floor, saying, “I don’t know what to do. I’m bored.”
I bit back a sarcastic comment about all her toys. I didn’t order to clean the play room. I abandoned temporarily my own plan to get back out in the garden. “We’re going to do a project,” I told her.
“What’s the project?” she asked as I laid out a handful of colored pens and a stack of old business cards on the porch table.
“We’re going to write down our ideas of things to do when we are bored.” I half expected her to start pouting again, but she jumped right in, “If you’re bored, you can . . . ”
- Do art
- Ride your bike
- Play with your dog
- Play with your dolls
- Watch birds in the sky
- Set up the box fort
- Weed the garden
- Pick food from the garden
- Play a board game or card game
- Look at books
- Do a word search or maze
- Swing on the swing
- Blow bubbles
- Wash the outside toys
- Play with chalk
- Hula hoop
- Give wagon rides
- Go on a scavenger hunt
- Make a fairy house
- Catch bugs
- Play with Play Doh
- Look for stuff for fairy houses
When she tired of listing ideas, she seized upon the last one we came up with—look for stuff for fairy houses—grabbed a basket, and went collecting. I weeded the garden and occasionally handed her things to add to her pile. I’m not sure how well our boredom busters will work when the next round of “I’m bored” starts, but making our set of idea cards broke the cycle today.
Inspired perhaps by her fairy house search, she asked to have fairy soup for supper. She described it me, made it, and ate it. I don’t know why it’s called fairy soup, but here it is.
K’s Fairy Soup
Seasoned black beans
“messy” cheese (shredded Mexican blend)
- Spoon black beans into a bowl. Take only as much as you will eat.
- Add two child’s handsfuls of shredded cheese. Heat to warm the beans and melt the cheese.
- Stir in a spoonful of salsa.
- Crumble a few chips over the mixture, again taking only what you know you will eat.
- Serve with additional chips for dipping.