Thursday, February 18, 2010

Nuttin' (Nothing) To Do

I distinctly remember my younger brother always complaining that he had “Nuttin’ to do”. With 8 siblings (5 older and 3 younger), you wouldn’t have thought that could be an issue for any of us, but I guess we all had our own things to do and needless to say, our mother was kept pretty busy.

Well, that shouldn’t be a problem for you and your grandchildren; the Internet isn’t just for youngsters to enjoy. Get on-line and start searching for ideas, but don’t do it when the grandchildren are waiting to be entertained – do it in advance so that you are prepared. I happen to love it when children use their imagination, so I encourage imagination-play at my house. At first, when I was using my imagination and telling them that I was riding a horse down the hall (with no horse), or eating lunch (with no food), they would look at me as if to say, “Are you flipping out Grannie”, but it didn’t take them long before they were playing along and telling their own stories. If you’re excited about what you’ve got to "show and tell" them, they will be excited about it too. I once went on a camping trip with my two grandchildren (ages 1 and 2 at the time), and I brought along a box filled with dollar store items, and crafts that I had put together (the fishing game was their favourite). It took some preparation on my part, but believe me, it was well worth it! I was happy, the children were happy, and the parents were happy; win-win-win situation! Of course, there were no distractions from TV and other toys, but sometimes you have to work at getting their attention. There’s nothing wrong with T.V. and a movie now and then (especially when you’re working on meal preparation or if you just need to take a break), but in my experience, children enjoy the one-on-one attention they get from their grandparents much more!

A website I would recommend is one that I just happened across. It has great ideas, ie, colouring pages and games and crafts. There are definitely a lot of websites out there, but sometimes you just need a “starting place”, and I think this one is terrific. Browse through this site and see for yourself. There are so many ideas, it just may happen that your grandchildren get too old (and you too) before you have the chance to try them all out ha ha

NOTE: You should also start brushing up on those children’s songs and nursery rhymes. Dancing around singing songs, or sitting in a circle telling nursery rhymes is a wonderful way to spend time with them. Either idea translates well into a puppet show, but that’s for another article…

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