So I brought out two big bins that were once filled with baby clothes (boo-hoo!) which are now empty because I gave them to a neighbor who really needed them (woo-hoo!).
I filled one with soapy water and one just with water and toys, and I crossed my fingers that the splashes would end up cleaning our way-too-dirty kitchen floor. (They didn’t. So it’s still dirty.)
Then I threw in some things that I knew would take a little bit of thinking in order for Maddy, Owen, and Cora to figure out how to use them.
- Soapy Sunday: I had a huge container of tiny plastic droppers and syringes from the millions of Baby Advil and Tylenol that we’ve gone through in the last five years. Now that Cora can take children’s medicine, we really have no use for these, which is why I felt comfortable letting the kids play with them.
Today, I brought them out because we needed a change from our Legos-puzzles-stamps-stickers-week, and my kids love to play in water.
I said, All right–let’s pretend it’s summertime and play in the water for a little before we head to church. I’ve got some of your sponge shapes in here, some Polly Pockets, and some cars.
And I have some things that you’ll need to put on your thinking caps to use. Let’s see who can figure out how to fill up this tiny cup (one of our plastic kids’ yogurt cups) using any of these things (the droppers and syringes).
They splashed around and played in the bubbles and pretty much ignored my question for a bit, but then they tried it. And tried. And tried some more. And finally, before they frustrated and everything got nutty, I said, Try to pull then push. And use two hands.
Owen cleans his car.
I wish he’d take care of Dirty Vanny, too.
That triggered something for Owen, who then started squirting Maddy, who was angry because Owen figured it out before her, and then Cora started whining because she wanted the big dropper and Maddy wouldn’t give it to her, and then Owen started splashing and making huuuuge bubbles and thank goodness because everyone got distracted and forgot about what they were upset about in the first place.
They played until their fingers were pruney and the bubbles started to disappear, and by the end, the bins were filled with dolls, cars, sponges, and syringes. An odd scene, but for a good long time, three kiddos were pretty engaged.
I had no idea how difficult the syringes would be for Maddy and Owen to use; I figured that Cora would use the droppers more, but really, I was surprised. Anyway, just a little bit of fine-motor-figuring-out on a rainy, dreary, runny-nosed morning.
Spring. . . hello? Where are you?