Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Backyard safari: The hunt for BBs...

Today the kids were restless. Fighting with each other. Nagging me about everything. Whining over the littlest issue. I sent them outside.I didn't ever think my kids would have to be encouraged to go outside, especially on a nice sunny day, but apparently they do. I thought the fact that we live in Iowa, where winters can be just one long string of sub-zero days and cloudy skies, they would appreciate any opportunity they had to be outside without a coat. They whined about having to go outside. They complained about having nothing to do. They wandered aimlessly around the yard with mopey faces on to prove how torturous my cruel punishment was.

On my way out to chastize them for being such technology-addicted robots, I noticed the container of BBs we recently bought for the BB gun were outside, and knocked over on the ground. I picked some up, and found a few that had strayed about a foot from the point of spillage. Gathering those, I found some more about a foot further than that. And some more. And some more. At that point I decided I was too lazy to pick them all up and that would be an excellent thing for my nothing-to-do children to take over.

Half an hour later, I found Chad constructing a sifting system. He had noticed the container for the BBs was full of dirt and grass (that probably ended up in there while they were picking up the spilled BBs), and he was cleaning it all out. The top of his contraption was a beach sifter, which allowed the dirt to fall through while catching larger things like the BBs and grass. The next level was a plastic lid from the recycle bin with holes punched just large enough for the BBs to fall through, but catch the grass.

And my grandmother thinks kids have to go to public school to learn how to "think properly." At least they found something to do.

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