Jo’s Tips for Bored Teens

Jo’s Tips for Bored Teens

Nannies by noa CEO, former nanny and stepmom to 4 teens, jo shares what her kids have been up to to keep boredom at bay.

Our kids have always been easy peasy, go with the flow types. We are lucky that way and don’t ever take it for granted, though I do I feel the need to touch wood as I say that. Now 12, 14, 14 and 17, we keep waiting for them to become unruly, pouty teens; yet they continue to surprise us, and the last few weeks have been no exception.

I’ve spent over 3 decades at this point with young children, as a nanny first and now a stepmom. I have always believed in the value of boredom; given the chance to develop it will spark creativity in kids of all ages. For our gang, we’ve seen them work in new ways to develop a resourcefulness that has made us proud.

1. They are thinking outside the box

Our son just turned 17. A newly licensed driver, he’s been taking himself to the gym and almost overnight became a competitive powerlifter. In less than 3 months he ranked 1st in his class in a New York State, Brooklyn Power Lifting competition! When the gym closed recently, and he was forced to choose between yard work with Dad to build bulk or find a way to maintain his newfound passion. He went with option B and built himself a barbell out of a steel pole and cinderblocks. Now he works out in the garage and has beat his personal best! A gratifying accomplishment.

2. They are finding ways to be kind

Our twin girls just celebrated their 14th birthday at home instead of going to their long-awaited first rock concert at MSG. Rather than feel sorry for themselves they instead thought of others. This weekend they pulled out the sewing machine and made face masks from elastic and cotton fabric in their craft box for those of us still heading out to the grocery store. They have baked more goodies than we should be eating and have all taken turns making family dinners; they’re even doing the dishes! Working together and sharing the load gives them a sense of pride. The beautiful artwork below was created by Mollie and adorns our kitchen, reminding us of the importance of kindness every day!

3. They are our silver linings

Our youngest is 12 and is the one who keeps us light and laughing! We’ve had spa days where she produced iced cucumbers for our sleepy eyes and she even let her older sister play real life salon and cut 6 inches off her hair, she is a brave young thing and luckily, it looks great! My husband gave our son a buzzcut after his initial attempt at a haircut proved an epic failure – he is no John Frieda but he does cut a mean lawn! All joking aside, we are embracing this precious time with our children; they are safe, well and finding new ways to adapt and learn. They remind us every waking moment to find the silver linings in this uncertain time.

For those of us who have our continued good health and our families, we are truly blessed. While they will surely have their moments through this, as will we, they are healthy and home and we are thankful.

Happy Passover, Happy Easter, and happy, healthy days ahead to all!

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