Let me start by saying that this is not a new idea, by any stretch of the imagination. However, it has saved my sanity more than once. And, shoot, there's a smidgen of a chance that someone, somewhere, could use this as well.
It's our waiting chain.
See, Fidget is really impatient for things. She is terribly interested in our plans for the day, the week, tomorrow, whatever. Where we're going, when, what holiday is coming, and so on. This interest is great except that she has no real concept of the passage of time. So Next Week means, well, the same as tomorrow. And the questions never end.
Not that I mind answering questions like that every day. It's just that she isn't getting it, the idea of track-able time. My answers mean nothing to her.
Somewhere along the line I remembered a teacher-friend of mine who had made a huge paper chain throughout her kitchen so their family could track the days until they left for a family trip to Hawaii. Every day they took off one more link and got one day closer to their trip. I thought it was brilliant.
So, when we told the girls that we had planned a rather last-minute trip to Florida to see my folks, Fidget immediately asked, When I get up from my nap, we'll get in the car and go to the airport and get on the plane to see Nana and Papa?
I had her help me make the chain and we hung it up front and center in the kitchen. Removing a link each day is an exciting ritual for her. She never forgets. (Although she still gets confused when she wakes up from a nap; it seems like another link should come down then, too, I guess.)
The best thing is that she has a visual reference for our plans. She knows just by looking at this chain that she made that it's not Today yet. She also knows that on day 5 she has another outing planned, so she can see that coming up, too. I love watching those little Aha moments.
(Oh, and the little horsey top turned out perfect. She wore it two days in a row, but the lighting has been awful for photos...)
One more thing. If you have a chance, stop by Grace's new collaborative project, Near:Far. It's beautiful.