(Thanks for the follow Teething Mom!)
Jack loves to perform experiments. Hands down, one of his favorite things to do this year is to mix a bunch of weird ingredients together in the hopes of creating a perfect volcano or messy eruption of some sort. He finds rocks and seeds and has me put them in little jars of water to see what will grow and what will dissolve. I find remnants of our projects all over the house. A small vase with what appears to be a tiny white cotton ball floating in old scummy water. A half crushed spikey pine cone that we picked up in Central Park. Magnets with various metallic objects hanging off them. Sticks of all sizes, hidden in various places around the yard and house and back of my car, which will be used to a) start fire, b) make into walking sticks, c) study for bugs living under the bark, or d) all of the above.
This is really the year of "learning how everything works". The greatest challenge to a 5-year-old is to say "Hey, what do you think will happen if we mix THIS with THIS?" Challenge accepted!
Jack: Mom can you hand me that string?
me: This piece? It's yarn actually...
Jack: (dismissively) Yeah yeah. (hand motions me to give it over)
me: Whatcha making?
Jack: An experiment.
me: Of what?
Jack: It's complicated to explain.
me: Try me.
Jack: I'm trying to take this string and connect it to this cat toy and then hook it to the door to see if I can make something like a door lock.
me: I have to go out to the grill in a few minutes to get the food, so don't block the door.
Jack: Don't worry, I invented something else to open the door after I lock it.
me: (grabbing a plate and spatula to go collect the grilled meat) Coming through!
Jack: (untwines his experiment and lets me out) There you go!
me: (I collect the food, turn off the grill and head back to the door) Okay, I have a hot plate of food, can you open the door please?
Jack: (panics) Uh, hold on... (frantic untwining of various strings and ropes) It's stuck, just hold on...
me: How did you manage to do that in 30 seconds. Didn't I say I had to come right back in?
Jack: Yeah, but it's such a good experiment that I forgot how to unlock it.
me: Did you ruin Ed and Bella's string toy? They like to play with that you know.
Jack: Nahhhh, Ed said he's bored with it. I mean, I can tell he's bored with it. Heh heh.
me: Really? Now can you invent something that will get you to wash your hands and help set the table the first time I ask?
Jack: Oh, nothing I invent can help with that!
How right he is! Jack proceeded to push the BBQ pork around on his plate and put away two helpings of mac & cheese with brocolli. I can tell he's working on some sort of science experiment that will turn meat products into ice cream. Necessity is the mother of invention!