By Ann Wright
I can’t help but feel sorry for the kids. They had planned today’s outing for days. Unfortunately Mother Nature has other ideas. This thunder storm has us all confined to the house. Finding something fun for them to do was my quest. They can always watch television, watch movies, play video games, play Wii, etc.. Today will be a new adventure!
I called a family meeting and everyone took their customary seats around the table. I brought out the craft supplies to a few moans and groans but I asked them to play along. I promised them they would have a good time. The goal was for each child to construct a treasure box about the size of a small shoebox or box of Kleenex.
A good hour was taken up with the construction of treasure boxes. I helped the little ones and the older kids dove right into the project. Next they would take my list of about twenty things and search the house for these items. As they found each thing, they were to place it in their treasure box, or if too large, they were to take a picture with one of the cell phones or digital cameras. When they had found everything on the list, they were to reconvene at the table. The items on the list ranged from a “boo boo,” something red, or a dog. The obvious item for a “boo boo” was a bandage but they could be creative. If it made sense when they explained why they choose that item to represent the item on the list, then it passed. If it was really a stretch then they had to continue their scavenger hunt until they found a more appropriate item. I was the ultimate judge.
When all were finished, the person completing the hunt first picked from a box of older pictures of family that were on the middle of the table. Each person, in turn, picked a picture. I served lemonade and popcorn as they sat and listened. With each picture that was picked, it was my job or theirs if they knew the person in the picture to tell a story about that person. It had to be a real story, not one they made up. To my surprise a few of the older relatives that I didn’t think they would remember, they did. However, they knew very little about most of the people. I filled in stories of who they were, what they did and any funny incidents that I could recall. The kids enjoyed hearing these tales about real people in their family. They were shocked to discover that later this summer they would even be meeting some of these people when we all would gather for a reunion.
The most surprised of all was Dad when he got home to discover his kids talking about Uncle Ed and his cousin Margaret Louise like they had just been spending time with them. The kids gave me an A+ for a rainy day activity and it was fun day for me as well to share family stories.