It’s summertime. Are your kids bored and cranky?

If they are doing things like this:

Or this…

Chances are, your kids are bored and/or undersupervised.

But fret not! Readers of The Bearded Iris Blog have banded together on Facebook to provide a cavalcade of suggestions for what to do to beat the summertime blues.

Mel of Arizona sends her little darlings to Grandma’s for the night when everyone needs a change of scenery (mostly Mel, I imagine.) Bless you, Grandmas of the world!

Kate, who valiantly restricts her kids’ total screen time to 1 hour per day has a rule that anyone who says they’re bored gets a chore. Not only does she not hear any whining anymore, but her kids are composing music… for fun! Kate, I’m not worthy. When you write your parenting book, I want a signed first edition.

Debi says “I gave my two younger kids a bag of 300 waterballoons today – they kept rather busy…..cheap entertainment.” Oh hells yeah. I like your style, Debi!

Lynn from Georgia wrote in that her four kids were scrubbing floors and baseboards yesterday. I love you Lynn. You are an inspiration to us all!

Kate, Ann, and I all employ the “you’re locked outside until further notice” technique. It works like a charm for small periods of time. Just make sure you provide drinking water and sunscreen so that the social workers will have less of a case against you when they arrive on the scene.

But my favorite idea comes from Mary Lou who writes: “Throw 99 pennies out across the yard. Tell them when they find the 100 pennies, they can come back in.” Brilliant!!! Apparently Mary Lou got that gem from some friends who use this trick when they need to score a little “private time.” To which Heather replied, “I’d only need 25 pennies for that.” Pretty sure I woke the dog with my cackling when I read that one.

How about you? What creative suggestions do you have for keeping your kids constructively entertained, out of your hair, and not in juvenile hall or emergency foster care? Let’s hear it!

fondly and with a criminal background check,

-Iris

© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris.