With a three-year-old there’s always stuff to do, plenty to do, not-enough-time-to-do-everything amounts of things to do. So when people say or post that there’s nothing to do, I don’t know what to tell them, other than, just go make something to do.
Kids don’t need big, flashy places to have fun. They don't need expensive toys or gadgets either. In fact, kids are fun. Organic, unmanufactured fun. Take the other day for instance, when our ten-year-old neighbor stopped by because well, I guess there wasn’t anything to do. Suddenly we were outside, and the yard was transformed into a town. My kid and this girl, they don't need a lot to work with when it comes to props. A tree became a jail, the walkway was the road. Any littering on that road and well, thus began a screaming giggling chase, and it wasn’t long before we had a jail break. It was chaos. Pure chaos.
Then came Sunday. And once again there was nothing to do.
My kid sat in my car for an hour, working the windshield wipers. We took a walk in the woods and he touched some moss and declared that it was the “carpet of the forest”. He became a doctor, working with his stuffed animals until they were all free and clear of disease. He found a stick in the yard and it became a wand, then a bat, then a machete and then a shovel. He broke said stick and that was kind of a bummer. He came up with no less than four different games on the swing set then found a lizard in the driveway and named it Emo because saying Nemo can be tricky. He met the new neighborhood puppy. He spent three minutes with his head cocked straight up to the sky and watched a jet fly over our house and disappear into the clouds. He found trash in the yard and admonished the litterbug as being naughty (no jail time though). He rubbed his belly and then gave birth (breech) to a stuffed monkey. He rode the riding mowers at Lowes. He helped me do recycling. He went to the park. A tennis ball became the better part of the evening. Later, he built a fort in the couch but refused to take off his left puddle boot and decided—from what I could make through the belly laughter—that Lefty was going to stay on his foot through his bath and even sleep with him and may never ever come off again. He helped me fix his bed. He read books. He wrapped his arm around my neck and said, “I love you, Daddy”.
And that was just Sunday, a day when there was just nothing to do.