I know as time passes we will use video games as a form of entertainment for Jack. But, it seems now that he is the transition period we would like to "save" that for later. So, we are always looking for "down time" (especially during the summer when he seems to be so much more active) activities.

We have a house full of Legos. Not just for Jack, but also his “typical” 15 year old brother is a Lego lover. Jack often disappears to his room and lies on the floor playing Legos when he has been very active. It is a nice way for him to “self adjust” his activity level.

So, we have been looking for other things like this. . . . .

We took our French exchange student to a hobby store the other day and my husband and son started looking at models. My dad and brothers used to spend hours working on these when I was little. So, I spent $15 and thought I would see what happened. WOW!!! 1st) Father and Son bounding time has been priceless. 2nd) Jack is having a wonderful time and learning new things. 3rd) Darrell says it is a really relaxing way to unwind after a hard day at work. It has been much better than I expected and I am amazed that we forget that the good old toys are still great today!

If anyone else has any great ideas like this, I would really appreciate it!

Ang :)

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Hi Angela!
Missed you and Darrell at the conference this year! The big non-video-game activity with Nick (age 9) this summer is the Sudoku--though I must confess that he got interested as a result of his Nintendo DS Brain Age game that has a Sudoku on it. When he sits at the kitchen table, totally engaged--priceless!

Gretchen
Hi Ang,

I have 3 big tubs of craft things,everything from toilet rolls to old cat food boxes and of course paints. I have an old rug that I roll out on the carpet (the art mat) and let my boys aged 6 and 8 do whatever they want from painting gumnuts to making robots,recycling is a great way to amuse the kids and get them to use their imaginations and its enviromentally friendly!
Another great idea which can be useful for christmas and birthday presents is making bracelets,necklaces and earrings (in Australia its easy to find all the bits and pieces you need at spotlight or lincraft or other material and haberdashery stores,so I imagine it would be easy for you too) or making cards then you can have a stockpile for any occassion with cutouts from magazines or dried pressed flowers. Hope this gives you some food for thought .

Cheers

Jane

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