Ethan said it to me for the first time a couple of days ago and I thought to myself: Life is over as you know it. Before I could start crying, an idea popped into my head:
An "I'm bored jar."
I've been reading a lot of crafty/mom-type blogs lately and I recently came across this idea. Get a glass jar and fill it with slips of paper with ideas of what the kids do when they say they are bored. Brilliant. Let's do it. I show Ethan some of the things I had read about it on the computer.
Here are a couple I'm Bored Jars I found:
From Stephanie in her Somewhat Simple blog:
From a blog called Home Spun Threads:
First let me say that I really enjoy reading these two blogs. The things they come up with and put together are so cute!
But, guess what? I am not the bored one. And, while I enjoy feeling inferior while reading these blogs, I will not put myself through the hell of actually realizing I am inferior by attempting to make such perfect pieces of art out of pickle jars.
So I explained the overall premise of the I'm Bored Jar to Ethan and sent him on his way to make it on his own. He showed up every couple of minutes with questions like "Where are the scissors? Where can I find a jar? How can I color the jar? I'm hungry because I am working so hard. Can I have a sandwich?
With the exception of the sandwich - I made him hunt for stuff and figure the rest out. It took him the entire morning to create his I'm Bored Jar.
Ethan, 7, concentrating on not being bored.
Then it was time to fill it with ideas.
Ethan: I'm going to put, "Play a board game with Mom."
Me: Oh noooo. These things have to be things that don't need me or money involved.
Ethan: Go to the pool?
Me: That involves me. I would have to keep an eye on you.
Ethan: Play in the sandbox?
Me: There you go!
A few hours later Zach announced that he too did not want to be involved in the "I'm Bored Jar."
Apparently Ethan had put in a slip that said, "Follow Zach" - or something to that effect.
Zach: Okay - he put in there, "Play with Zach" and he's been following me around. I refuse to be part of the Jar.
Me: Then help him come up with some ideas.
That suggestion was a mistake.
Zach: Write down... Bet on horse racing.
I hear Ethan slowly repeating the phrase: Bet on horse racing.
Zach: And... how about... go clubbing.
Me: Zach! Don't do that to him!
Ethan: Gooooooooooo cllubbbbbbbbinnnnnng. What else?
Zach: Organize a 5k fun run/walk for rabies.
Ethan: I don't know how to spell that.
Zach obligingly helps him spell it out.
At no point does Ethan ask what any of these mean, which I find troubling.
Zach: Organize a gang.
Me: Okay - this is not funny. Don't tell him to do that.
Ethan: Orgaaaaaannnnizzzzze a gggaannnnnng.
Me: Come on Zach! Help him come up with good ideas.
Zach: I think these are all very good.
Zach: Make a documentary of mom's day.
Ethan: How do I do that?
Zach: You just follow her around with the camera all day and video tape everything she does.
Ethan: Oh! Okay!
He writes that down too.
Zach: My work here is done.
He goes to the basement to play video games.
A few minutes later I hear Ethan.
Ethan: I'm bored. Oh! I'll pick out something from the I'm bored jar!
Ethan: Bet on horse racing!
Ethan: Mmmmoooooooommmmmmm! How do I bet on horse racing?