Hello, this is the long-absent Esther here. I have thought about writing these last four (or has it been more?) weeks, but somehow I never took time for it and so the long silence started. I’m sorry I didn’t write—and did miss it—but sometimes life takes priority. I do have ideas for things to write about—it’s just the writing them down that I have problems with. So I’m sorry, and I hope you’ll forgive me.
Now…onto today’s topic: Taking care of boys. I have six brothers, and each one is unique in the things he likes to do—all of which are great and beneficial to the whole family. Last night, I got to wondering what would happen if (for some unforeseen reason) they had to go spend some time at a friend’s house. Would they go crazy? Or drive a friend crazy? So I thought I’d draft up a little list for things people could do with boys (especially if they’re younger—3-6 years old or so) to keep them (or themselves) sane. Of course, some things would have to be for older boys, but I think this is a fairly general list of things anyone could do that any age would be able to participate in.
- Make sure you have lots of food, for meals as well as for 1-4 snacks in-between meals.
- Never just say “get outside!” if they’re bored. Give them something to do outside (pick up apples, feed the cat, mow the yard [that’s for older children, of course] etc.)
- Make sure you have an ample supply of toy animals, wooden blocks (assorted sizes, preferably), toy farm machinery, and a good assortment of cars and trucks. Bonus points if you have masking tape for making roads on the carpeted floor.
- Have a plan for something you can make together if it’s rainy or cold outdoors. Cookies are always a hit, and generally can be made with the help of everyone (little ones love pouring things in—especially if they get a taste now and then). Be prepared for a more-than-messy kitchen.
- Make sure you have an ample supply of children’s books. Ones about farming, animals, machinery, and adventures (with lots of pictures) are generally hits. Be prepared to read until your voice is past being worn out.
- Having several good games is very helpful in keeping them occupied (especially if they take a long time to play).
- You are the best person in the world if you have Lego for them to play with. Especially if you have instructions for building things they haven’t built before. They will just about be in heaven.
- If they are older boys, give them a hammer and some nails. Put them to work, and they’ll be happier.
- I suppose this shouldn’t be an option, but if all else fails, make sure you have a good supply of clean videos to watch. That will keep them occupied for a while.
I know this isn’t an exhaustive list—there are many things I could add to it. But I think it’s a general one. And this wouldn’t apply only to someone taking care of my brothers. It also applies to me, and is something I put in practice whenever needed. Brothers are lots of fun to grow up with and take care of, and it is an awesome responsibility we have as big sisters to be a positive influence on their lives.
Now—I’m curious—what would a list like this look like for sisters?