Monday, January 31, 2011

Cabin Fever Week: Monday

There's this hour in our house that is notoriously hard to get through. It's called The Hour Before Daddy Gets Home, and I have yet to meet a more cabin fever-inducing time. I'm (ideally) trying to get us all fed and the house at least somewhat picked up so we can relax and enjoy the evening together, and Espen is typically trying his hardest to get me stop whatever it is I'm doing and spend time with him. He usually starts getting a little tired around this time, and the more tired he is, the more he needs whatever it is he doesn't have. I'd say it's easily the hardest time of the day, and the only way that I've discovered to combat it is to drop everything and just play with Espen. Which is exactly what I did yesterday.

5 PM rolled around, and having just eaten, Espen was crawling around my feet trying to get my attention. Of course we had yet to do anything fun and different, seeing as we had spent the day on laundry, eating, playing, napping, bathing. So we needed a distraction - quick!

Enter the trusty blanket fort.

This thing is so ghetto I can hardly believe I'm actually posting a picture of it. I used a kitchen chair, Espen's high chair and one end of the kitchen table, along with two blankets and a quilt. It literally took five minutes to build, of which the most time consuming task was to run upstairs and get the quilt from the closet. But it was fun! Espen was enthralled from the very moment I showed up with the quilt, and completely fascinated by the whole process.


Then I got some books and a box of cheddar bunnies and crawled inside the fort. It took Espen a few minutes to really "catch the vision" of what we were doing, but once he did, he was sold. As you can see from the photos, there wasn't a whole lot of light inside our fort, but there was enough for us to read books, eat bunnies and watch old videos of Espen on the camera, which is really his idea of a good time. And it really was fun. I enjoyed building the fort, and even though this cramped little space wasn't the most comfortable for me, I loved seeing Espen experience something completely different with his mama.

And then Nick came home and wanted to play too, which of course, Espen was all about. I think he spent about 90 minutes playing in the fort last night, and because I forgot to take it down, another little while this morning. The fort actually did double duty as a bird watching hideout while I was eating breakfast and Espen was playing on the floor. Some birds showed up on the feeder, and because the fort was built against the window, Espen was able to crawl over and watch them without scaring them.

All in all, two thumbs up for the fort! It was quick to build, absolutely free and provided hours of fun. And that's definitely worth something for an 11-month old.

5 comments:

  1. Now all you need is a large, empty cardboard box and you are set for playtime for weeks!

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  2. We made a fort a few weeks ago! And....I believe we have the same kitchen table. Also....I see That's Not My Monster in that picture! We LOVE those books!

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  3. I'm just going to have to accept you have the worlds best skin- and when did Espen get teeth?!
    I make forts all the time, still, it never get's old and I can just pretend it's for Alex's benefit.

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  4. I know about that hour-before-daddy-gets-home. It's brutal. but I love so much that you built a fort to play in with Espen so that he'd have something fun and *different* to experience. Just because it was Monday. That picture of the two of you where he's displaying his divine toothy grin honestly caught in my throat a little. You guys are friends. You hang out together. That is just beautiful.

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