Monday, July 2, 2012

Bored? Well, get some inner resources!

There were some long, involved discussions this weekend in social media on the topic of childhood, kicked off by this article, called Spoiled Rotten.

It's really an amazing article and got very strong reactions from all my friends.

Many of our observations were the same. For example, when I was little, if my parents had people over, we were sent upstairs for the duration of the event. We were not running around jostling margaritas out of people's hands or pawing the olive tray. Adult events were for adults, and children were elsewhere. Now, that is not the custom.

We were also not really part of the conversation if we were in public with my parents and other adults. They had adult conversations and we either talked to the other miniature humans present or just hushed. :)

There were tons of kid-centric events - it wasn't like we lived in the kid gulag, but there was a very distinct border between adult life and kid life, especially in public.

One of my friends said "we understood we weren't the center of the universe, our parents were." They were, after all, the ones providing us with the Matchbox Cars and Stretch Armstrong, so it seemed quite fair at the time.

We were also expected to go amuse ourselves in the summer and other non-school periods until such time as we were fit to be paid to do something.

The same friend said that if she declared she was bored her father would respond: "Bored? Well - get some inner resources!"

Can you THINK of a better piece of advice for ANY human than that?

That should be on a monument somewhere.

It's funny, because in the tweet before she told me that, I saw this quote come through...

“You can't use up creativity. 
The more you use, the more you have.” 

Isn't that the truth? I think artists get this because we get into self perpetuating frenzies of creating from time to time. Usually this ends up in some sort of massive shopping spree as well (cough - holiday mini - cough) but we understand how being creative makes us more creative with our very DNA.

This is the thing that a "run off and play" childhood gave me, in my opinion. I created a lot of my universe, and I do still to this day. And it makes me very, very happy.
Pin It

Stamps: Life Shared
Paper: Watercolor Paper, Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla, Fan Fair DSP
Accessories: Paintbrush, Dazzling Diamonds, Tacky Spray
Techniques: Frosting

Now go outside and play.



  1. Do parents even say "go outside and play" any more? I read that article as it made the rounds the other day - great observations, and I wish we could go back to the good ole days.

  2. Oh Lydia!! This is simply a GENIUS post! I'm going to read the article that you suggest but I absolutely understand EXACTLY what you're saying!!

    Thanks for the fabulous post!!

    Crafty Hugs!

  3. What a great post! When I was a kid, the common saying was "children should be seen but not heard" and it was true. Never would we think to interrupt a conversation between adults. I am trying to teach my children the same manners, but I really don't think they understand that life doesn't revolve around them! Great card, too, BTW. Love the retro look of that stamp.

  4. Cute card. I love the vintage images with kids playing.
    I brought my kids up with the understanding if they said they were bored, I would find chores to keep them occupied. On the rare occasion they actually took me up on the chores and did something I suggested I usually took pity on them later on and found something of interest for them to do...once the chore was completed, of course and not as a reward for doing chores. Our daughter has carried on the tradition. Guess it worked! :D

  5. Hear! Hear! Bravo! Thank you! I thought not being able to tolerate the child-centered world was just a side effect of my "getting up there."
    I am tired of playing second fiddle to out of tune and out of touch kids and parents.

  6. I always enjoy your posts, Lydia. I heard (and used it often enough) a phrase when my daughters were growing up. When they would say they were bored, I would respond with "you're boring, so go find something to do." I was also prone to respond to their complaints of boredom with a list of jobs. It drives me crazy when I carry on a conversation with a friend and her 3 year old is saying "Mom, Mom" NONSTOP to get her attention.

  7. We were raised to say "yes sir" and "no sir" to my dad. Sassiness was something you never attempted either. Ahhh, memories of childhood. Lol.

    Sparkly little card. Love it!

  8. Lydia, thanks so much for this post. You have some very insightful thoughts here. I sent a link to your blog to my daughter, who just had baby #7. She pretty much parents in the old fashioned way, and I knew she would like what you had to say. Thanks also for the link to the original New Yorker article.


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