A Case of the Mondays

We had a really bad case of the Mondays. It was rainy. We were tired; of one another, of being inside, of everything about the day. I wanted to pull my hair out and I didn’t care how bad it would hurt. But I didn’t. Instead I decided to find something we could all do together. Typically when I’m bothered with the little ones I don’t try to take time away, instead I drop everything I have to do or should do and I dive head first into a game or activity with them. I don’t know why, but this always cures me. So I thought and thought, and then I remembered a post from my favorite blog last week. And like magic, our Monday turned right around. Ultimate forts have a way of doing that, you know?

tent fort

As they played I couldn’t help but snap a picture and send it to my mom. There were so many days when me and my siblings would work hard creating our ultimate fort. And our mom always let us keep it for days at a time. It became our home inside our home. We would pull our sleeping bags and flashlights in it, staying up late and sleeping in the next morning. It is a feeling I treasure. Wanting these kids to have that same nostalgic memory, I let them make a mess as big as they wanted inside. They built puzzles, we read stories in crazy voices, they told secrets and even watched a movie. And I still haven’t asked for them to take it down. Why would I? Truth be told, I kind of like it, too.tent tent top

Whats your best cure for Monday’s? And have you made a fort lately? I highly recommend it! They’re not just for kids. And be sure to stop over and check out my favorite blog today.

The Great Box Expiriment

I arrived to little voices chanting, “Da-nelle, Da-nelle, look we got!” Please don’t be another puppy, I thought. And boy was I ever happy to see a large broken box instead of an animal laying in the middle of the living room. Boss Mom looked at me and smiled, “I knew you’d like that.” And she was right. I really did like it! And I couldn’t wait to get started on turning it into something great!

We tossed around a few ideas: a sled, a dog, a person. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to meet their requests. So, we settled on a movie theater and I was imagining something epic! I was in charge of the cutting. They were in charge of the decorating. And when it was all done, we set it up, and they were interested for two minutes. Humf. That was not what I had planned at all. Box Restaurant 3Refusing to give up on the great box, I tried Plan B. This time, I simply turned it around and put their play kitchen behind it. And voila, like that, The magic happened. As an adult I was thinking, this side isn’t even decorated, how can you like it better? But kids don’t see things like that. They see in things in an entirely different dimension. Soon, they forgot that it was a box at all. In their minds they saw a cafe in France where only the finest food was served. And even though je t’aime parler le francais avec les enfants, I was quickly ousted from the game as the four kids took over.  There was no need for me, even with my fantastic french skills, to be involved in this activity. There was wall built between child and adult that I couldn’t break, no matter how hard I tried to be silly. This was an experience they wanted to share with their brothers and sisters alone. Like the dinosaur I once knew, this box transported the kids from reality. And so I sat down and watched and smiled: this is what childhood is about. It isn’t about things, but who we play those things WITH. And it won’t always be like this around here. We are all growing up so quickly. So I let them relish in one another. I let them forget about their chores and their homework. I let them play. I let them be kids. And I didn’t interrupt them. Box Restaurant 2Nannying for a large family is beautiful. I don’t know how else to put it. I love my days here. They couldn’t get rid of me if they tried.