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I Spy With My Little Eye … an easy diversion

Submitted by on Friday, 27 March 2009 No Comment

i_spyI learned to be grateful for “I Spy” after it saved my life almost a year ago when a 20-minute drive home mutated into a three-hour road trip.

Big Guy was just learning to play at that time and hadn’t quite grasped that “I spy” means “I see” and that the object had to actually be in his view in order for him to “spy” it.

He gets that now, though I suspect he’s gaming the system these days by changing what he spies on the fly. Is it really possible that I never, ever, ever guess what he’s spied? Maybe, because I  always manage to lose to him at Candy Land too. But I have my doubts.

Possible cheating aside, “I Spy” has become our go-to for times when the guys really need to stop screaming for a few minutes because Mommy forgot the Motrin in her mad rush to get out the door in under a half hour.

It’s portable – no equipment to remember. It has a small carbon footprint – no batteries or chargers. It has no small pieces to lose, and the guys don’t argue over who’s going to be the blue gingerbread man.

I try to avoid the printed series, by the way, because those pictures are so intricate that they often foil even me. It’s a little ego-deflating to have a kindergarterner’s library book kick your butt. Otherwise, though, it’s a game of all seasons for us.

It’s gone on a two-hour road trip to the snow – annoying, but it beats the heck out of 120 minutes of “are we there yet?

It’s kept the guys relatively happy during lengthy waits at the doctor’s office after, darn my luck, we’ve landed again in the exam room with only one toy truck. Disclaimer: Playing “I Spy” ceases to distract them when the nurse appears with the tray of “shock” needles.

And now that the morning fog has cleared and we can actually see far enough in front of us to spy anything, it’s making our walks to school a bit more interesting. Annoying, but it beats the heck out of 10 minutes of bickering. I guess giving them a real way to compete has lessened their need to compete for my attention through verbal bludgeoning.

We’re traveling cross country next month, and that trip might just be the time we’ll encounter an “I Spy” fail, simply because you quickly run out of things to spy in an airplane.

“I spy with my little eye something orange.”

“The seat belt sign?”

“Yes! Now, I spy with my little eye something orange.”

“It’s the seat belt sign again, isn’t it?”

OK, so maybe “I Spy” isn’t perfect. But it’s darn close.

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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