The truth is, I’m not exactly the most fun or creative mom. I tend to live my life in comfortable ruts — preferring each day to look an awful lot like the one before. For me, predictable is nice.
Hence, the lack of creativity.
My kids tolerate my boringness pretty well, I have to say. But on those rare occasions when I actually plan a fun activity, something out of the ordinary, well…let’s just say that their response makes it totally worth it. Such was the case recently, when I was overtaken by an unexplainable burst of creativity.
Summer was winding down, school would be starting in a matter of days, and I wanted to give the kids something extra-fun to do one morning. But since our kids have an age gap of 7.5 years, it’s not always easy to come up with an activity that appeals to both of them.
There is one thing, though, that everyone in our family enjoys: taking pictures. C. recently spent some allowance money on a nice camera and L.’s been using an old point-and-shoot we had lying around. So in a moment of inspiration, I knew just what I’d do…plan a Photo Scavenger Hunt.
After the kids went to bed one night, I made a list (attempting to make its difficulty level somewhere between “too easy for a 13-year-old” and “too hard for a 6-year-old”), planned a reward, created a flyer, and prepared for the next morning. When the kids got up, this was waiting for them:
I made sure they knew this was not a race, it was a challenge. For both of them. And I didn’t deny the fact that I would enjoy a Starbucks outing just as much as they would — if not more so!
Bottom line: the Photo Hunt was a hit. Both kids took the challenge seriously, really got into it, and did a great job.
They hunted for bumblebees in flowers…
Built things out of Legos…
And completed their lists in record time.
At which point, we hopped in the car and went to Starbucks, as promised. Fun for all!
It will no doubt be quite a while before I come up with anything quite as exciting and inspired as this scavenger hunt. If we’re lucky, maybe something will occur to me by next summer. We’ll see… In the meantime, I’m hoping the memories of this event tide my kids over!