We had friends visiting from Philly all last weekend. In addition to enjoying several local beaches, touring Fort Gorges and eating our fill of Labor Day barbeque, we also visited Mackworth Island.
What do you mean, Where the hell have I been?? I don’t get to go to the bathroom alone anymore, let alone blog about it. Yes, I know I have not been blogging. I am sorry. I do care about you all, but refereeing between my daughters has to take precedence. To be blunt. These kids is driving me CRAZY! The fact that we haven’t had a car in 2 weeks b/c the auto body shoppe is holding ours hostage has only compounded matters. I love walking. A damn good thing. B/c now I am accustomed to walking long distances w/out rest, whilst pushing a shopping cart, holding 2 hands & balancing my sanity on a dime.
I’m hot. I’m thirsty. I’m hungry. I have to pee. I’m tired of walking. My stomach hurts. Mommy, why do people fart?
Yes, of course I explained about flatulence. But that only took so long. Leaving me plenty of time to devise a few diversionary tactics to keep my kids entertained while we hike across town.
1) Make up games. Your kids will LOVE THIS.
Our favorite is the super duper ANIMAL GAME.
It’s easy. One person starts. They think of an animal, and say “I’m thinking of an animal that…” and then you offer a single clue. Location, type, color, starts w/ a certain letter. You catch my drift.
I’m thinking of an animal that lives in Africa.
Each person gets a turn guessing. Zebra. Elephant. Lion.
If no one has guessed it, then you offer a second clue. Another round of guesses. And so on. The person who guesses the animal first gets to go next.
This is my daughters favorite game EVERRRRRRR. And when you get tired of animals, you can change it to anything. I like Food. I’m thinking of a food that used to be alive. And so on. But you can do anything. Trust me, this game keeps them entertained for AGES> THANK GOD.
2) Make up stories.
I have a million stories rolling round in my head, so I just pull one out. But even if you aren’t one of the Bros Grimm, you can still come up w/ SOMETHING. Where are you? Look around and make something up. My daughters fixate on animals. They give these animals funny names and make them do stuff. My older daughter told a really good one today about Bob & Phil the fat fish who went into a “Shrimp & Pancakes” restaurant and were being scoped out by the eel cook as potential dinner. My younger daughter came up w/ Bob the Hedgehog likes to eat poop. Just go w/ it. I tell you, when I make up a story, whatever it’s about, my ladies hang onto every word. They become so engrossed in the moment, they totally forget about how tired/bored/hungry/irritable they were.
3) Tell them true stories.
Think about things you have read, and talk about it. Or better yet, tell them about things you did when you were little. Tell them about things THEY DID when they were little. My girls cannot get enough of this. Daddy, tell us about when your foot got run over. Mommy, tell us how that crazy squirrel got into your apartment. It never gets old. My younger daughter loves to regale us about “That one time I peed in my bed.” YES SHE IS REALLY INTO BODILY FUNCTIONS RIGHT NOW. But.. As long as it’s about you – or them – or something remotely interesting – they will be happy. And so will you.
4) Sing songs.
One word: BINGO. Old MacDonald. The farmer in the dell. Three Blind Mice. CMON PEOPLE, You have to know at least a few. And when you tire of those (b/c you know you will), do like we do and make them up. We came up w/ a great song last week about a dead rat we saw in the street, it was called Flat Rat. That song lasted us at least half a mile. Perhaps the greatest children’s song ever.