When my kid’s were babies learning to play, many of my friends gave me weird looks when they would see me sit my baby down with one or two toys and leave them to play alone while I completed a task within eyeshot. “You’re not going to sit and play with her?” Well it’s not my job the entertain her. It’s my job to love her.
I have always felt like we have this skewed view of entertainment in our lives. We think we need something to fill 24 hours of our days to be happy. Whether it’s work or play. We think we need it filled to the brim. I will admit, I have a tendency to work myself into oblivion and then catch myself only to reel myself back in and slow it down a bit. I think we are instilling this awful habit into our kids to their detriment. My children will know good honest hard work because they are raised in a family that works as a team and we only work when we work together. But, I will never force them to be the smartest kid in the class or the fastest kid on the track team. I will however, teach them to work hard and show pride in what they do without being boastful. With that being said, I also want to make sure I give them time to breathe. Let them take a walk outside and find the beauty in the world God created for them.
It’s not unusual for the tv to not be turned on for days at a time. Take away easy entertainment and that’s when the creativity blossoms. I have been a stay-at-home mom for seven years and one day. I do it all. I mean all of it, for my family. But, it is not my job to entertain anyone. It has always been my conviction to raise people who are good and kind and work hard and take care of themselves and help others. I am raising kids to be adults and I work hard to give the the proper skills to be able to grow into people who can adapt to life. If I stopped when I’m doing everytime my kids wanted me to play dinosaurs, they would never have clean underwear or a meal to eat. Instead I make use of what I’m doing to teach them something and spend time with them (now while they’re young enough to be excited about the things I do). Now, if my work is finished and they want to play, you bet I get down and play, but it’s not my sole mission in life and they understand and respect it. Work until the work is done and then you can play. This is a lesson I hope they carry throughout their lives.
Boredom culivates ideas. Many times I have heard ”Mom, I’m bored”. My response is usually “OK”. Then they scamper off and find something to do. What’s funny is, in our house, the toys are at a minimum so they really have to get creative. Many times they will pull out the art bin and sketch pads and have “vs. wars“ on who can draw certain objects better... running to me every 10 minutes to judge their artwork. Sometimes it’s a puzzle. Sometimes they pull out their LEGO ideas book and recreate things they find in there. It’s always something creative and always something they are using their little minds to do and they are coming up with the ideas on their own. This will be so important when they are grown. When they are bored and can reach to quick easy things to enterrain them, I pray instead it feels more natural to them to get creative with their free time and make something instead. My son, we will probably cook. He is in the kitchen helping and learning almost every single meal. Fascinated by the art of it. My daughter will be a painter or an artist or a photographer, like me. She can see things in the most amazing way and she always takes the time to slow down and enjoy beauty. These are their God given gifts but I believe giving them time to be bored, gave them time to relish in those gifts.