“Mom, What Can I Do?”

My five-year-old has a habit, lately, of laying on me and asking, “What can I dooooooo?”

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The boy can self-play. He can group-play. He can understand complex games and is beginning to read. But I hadn’t realized, in my ignorance, that he’s developing normal childhood things like attachments, fears, and desires for acceptance. Besides those, he is the youngest child and normally has three other miniature people to play with.

When he’s stuck at home with just me, then, his options are limited to what I’ve planned. And that’s usually Wal-mart.

Yay.

Or dishes, laundry, bathrooms, floors, yard work….

Double-yay.

Perhaps due to my usual daily activities, The Bored One is an excellent worker. He comes along to the store, enjoys helping with dishes or toilets, and likes showing me how strong he is pushing his little wheelbarrow outside.

When I’m just sitting with my laptop, though, he does not know what to do. He can’t help with Mom saying, “I need to focus for 30 minutes.” Even if I hand him a coloring or activity book or an entire marble works set, he wants my attention -the very attention I wanted for writing.

So… this is the point at which I remember my priorities.

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I set the laptop aside and play a game with him. We build a tower for the marbles. Together, we draw or paint or color.

I know that some parents need to work from home. Some can’t afford day care. I also know that the work can get done and there is still time for a game. It’s what’s most important, right?

 

Photo Credit:
Magdalena Smolnicka
Image by Aline Ponce from Pixabay
Paige Cody

Food Tip 4

Kids can be picky eaters. I’m lucky in that I didn’t really get a picky eater till my third one. Whether kids like the meal you’ve made or not, however, presentation is usually key.

My food advice today is:

Make the food appear more interesting.

A few ways to do this include:

  1. Cutting it into cool shapes, especially their favorite ones.
  2. Allowing them to choose toppings or arrangements. This works well for meals like tacos or potato bar.
  3. Serving it as a sandwich mouth (with olive or grape eyes) or an octopus veggie tray.
  4. Hiding veggies in tiny diced form in their mashed potatoes or sandwich.
  5. Having the food talk to them about how much it wants to swim in their tummy.

I’m also a big fan of telling them they need to try just a taste of what I make. It doesn’t always work, especially with sensory issues, but it’s a good standard when you can have it.

Plus, there’s always bribery (dessert).

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Photo Credit:
Image by Ana_J from Pixabay