As we come out of isolation, there are hero interim-teachers, aka parents, the world over, who have done everything in their hands to keep their children entertained in the confinements of their home.
During the first few weeks of quarantine, our family walked and rode bikes around the neighborhood, followed by crafts galore in the kitchen and my house would inevitably grow into a stuffed animal jungle. I thought that between the loosening of our bedtime schedule, the all-day pajama wardrobe and a multitude of other unexpected activities that would happen, things could not go crazier. Then one day, parked outside a wholesale club, we joined the “crazy quarantine club.”
Instead of panic shopping for potty paper or stocking up on canned goods, my husband emerged from the big retail store with a huge box and a massive smile. We secret coded with winks and stares, and despite our clumsy attempt to hide the large package in our family ride (Queen Pacifica), we somehow managed to pull off the surprise for our kids. A big, colorful bouncy house with an integrated hoop and slide unfolded in my living room, and as it inflated, so did my kids’ amazement and their high pitch squeals. The look on their faces was as joyous as that of Christmas morning!
Since then, the bouncy house has worked its magic: Keeping my kids off the couches and providing hours of entertainment. It may look ridiculous but at this point, who cares.
Certainly, my household was far from alone in making extreme, or “less normal” decisions or purchases for that matter during this time!
So, when I asked around, I got a list of wonderful and hilarious things that would make any kid feel the way those baseball playing kiddos in the movie Richie Rich felt when they were invited to Richie’s house.
This poem is based on all the very true, very fun, very crazy things they shared with me. Thank you, Patti, Brenda, Tony, Caro, Yvonne, Melissa, Lore, Tarah, Shanti, Amanda, Jill, Alejandra, Anastasia, Brittnie, Nicole, Anna, Kathleen and Cara for the stories!
This is the tale,
Of the very crazy things,
That a lot of parents did,
In the name of quarantine.
Our vacations got extended,
But our friends, we could not see.
Stay at home, they recommended,
It’s because COVID-19.
Keep the scary world outside,
Thought us parents nationwide.
In these walls there’s room to play,
Why not bowl in the hallway!
Magnificent forts emerged,
As our sofas disappeared.
I will help you! said one dad,
I will build this fort with you!
With twinkle lights and blankets,
So you can even sleep here too.
Can we camp here in our living room?
And have goldfish for a snack?
I believe that that’s quite opportune,
Since you found your sleeping bags.
It’s getting hot!
Let’s get a pool!
Even a sprinkler party will do.
15 feet high, and is inflatable.
Dear! Amazon says it’s available!
How about a water slide? I know it fits.
Or should we get that on week six?
And soon our backyard,
Once full of weeds,
Became an oasis,
For our summer needs.
A sea, a beach!
And on many occasions too,
An outdoor shower, with a little bit of shampoo.
Mommy, will you cut my hair. – My kid said.
Sure! But I decided to give him a mullet instead,
He was happy, so was I.
Which color would you like your hair to dye?
Don’t cut your bangs!
I said too late.
Now all she wants is mermaid hair!
Pink or blue or both, I dare.
I’m all in, it’s on, I swear.
Buy a puppy!
Buy a horse!
Do it quickly,
And without remorse!
Chickens, turtles, all the pets.
And remember, no regrets!
Hop on our bed, you are all invited.
It’s movie night, it’s been decided!
We’ll let you choose, I know it’s Monday,
It’s before nine, pretend it’s Sunday!
If we dress up and imagine,
that this house is a fine diner.
We can have a feast ourselves,
I can even wear eyeliner!
All these things we parents did,
In the name of quarantine.
Made us see just how spontaneous,
And how fun we could all be.
The wall projector, the bouncy house,
the swing, the scepter, the new playground.
It’s more than things, it’s the surprise,
I yearn to see, now in their eyes.
It’s very easy, we realized,
to bring joy to little ones.
It just takes ice cream on the side,
It’s having mocktails Friday night!
This time with them will soon expire,
It’s not big things that they desire;
It’s you they want, you they admire,
It’s pushing bedtime half an hour.
I hope that all this craziness that we let in, stays with us forever.
I hope that we fill our lives with a little crazy and a lot of joy.
And that if anything, this quarantine, brings us closer to our kids.
One crazy act at a time.