Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Let Me Entertain Me

I love how self-sufficient Ryan is when it comes to entertaining himself. Being curious is a big help, because he can find something interesting about just about any random object or place. For example, today he and I went to Daddy’s office for lunch. Ryan shared some of Daddy’s watermelon, finished off a bottle, and then was a bit cranky since he was ready for a nap, so we gave him a plastic spoon to play with. He was fascinated by it. He held it in both hands and tugged at it for a few moments, then waved it above his head and examined it very intently, then put it in one hand and whacked various things with it. It kept him amused long enough for us to get out to the car and tuck him into his car seat, at which time he fell soundly asleep.

But he’s pretty good at entertaining himself anywhere. Last week we were at my sister-in-law’s pool, and he kept himself busy for a very long time just lying on the pool deck, examining the acorns and bits of leaves that drifted down. On our pool deck, he checks out the pebbles or stares at the tiki torches or watches the ripples in the water as they catch the light. When we go shopping, he often leans back and gazes up at the ceiling, engrossed in the overhead lights. Sitting in his car seat, he entertains himself by watching his own wiggling toes, or gnawing on whatever rag or toy is handy, or by merely sucking on his fingers and gazing out the window at the passing scenery.

I’d love to know what he’s thinking all these times. When he’s studying that plastic spoon, is he wondering what it’s for? What it tastes like? If it bends or stretches? Is he trying to figure out why it makes different noises when he hits it against different objects, or does he just enjoy the noise? Is he merely curious because he’s never seen a spoon quite like it before?

Whatever it is that entertains him about such things, I’m glad of it. Because wherever we end up, I can find something to keep him busy with, even if it’s just his own toes.

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