We just arrived home early this morning. 17 hours of driving from Key West to North Carolina. It was a wonderful vacation. I could tell the boys were ready to be home. We tried to be sure they have all the comforts they need for the ride. They are fabulous travelers. They had their DVD players, movies, Ds and games, books, drawing pads, snacks, water, pillows, stuffed animals etc. As we were pulling out of Key West, after breakfast, Phil was getting a little anxious and started saying "I am bored". That can mean almost anything for Phil. Can mean he is tired, needs to get out and move around, needs to rest or just wants to be home and is not excited about the drive. So we both listed options for entertainment including playing a game with me or his brother. Nothing was appealing, and he just kept repeating he was bored. I validated his feelings, and we talked a little. Didn't seem to help. We were still driving, well Jackson was, I was chatting with Phil. Phil just seemed at an end, like there was this stumbling block to moving forward with the return trip. So I just popped up and said, "what if we found stopped at Walmart so you could get a little lego or something 'new' to work on for part of the ride?"
He didn't say yes or no, but suddenly his mood changed dramatically, he started talking with his brother about a game they want to create, he got out his ds and actually asked if the next time we stop for gas if I would help him find a movie to watch. Sure I can help with that any time. I think just him knowing there were other options NOT in the car, was a path to help him move around the obstacle in his way. He didn't necessarily need that option in the moment but just knowing it existed allowed him to move forward and engage in other things. Suddenly there was not this unsurmountaible boulder in the way.
And about 8 hours down the road he asked if it were still possible to find a Walmart. Of course (even though I really do not like Walmart, they do have a great selection of legos), if that is what he needs in the moment we will do whatever we can to help him. And we found a Walmart, and a lego and hours of enjoyment, and a nice ride home.