I think boredom is an opportunity. Without fail, at every restaurant, I see children playing handheld video games instead of talking to their families. In this overscheduled world where children move from one structured activity to the next, watching a quick movie in the car on the way, it is seemingly impossible for them to get bored.
As a parent, I feel the pressure to find something for my children to do. Something to stop the boredom. I admit, it's mostly laziness on my part. With the first ten minutes of boredom comes whining. Lots of whining. To make it stop, I'm tempted to turn on a movie or let them play on the computer. But lately, I've tried to encourage boredom, so my kids can learn to entertain themselves. To make up games, to play with dolls, to use their imaginations.
The Creative Family has an entire section on play, and it's all creative. Some of the ideas are wonderful, like family drawing time, and some are classic, like dress up play.
A great dress-up box can have just about anything in it, but I think a beautiful tutu is a necessity. This one is from Kennedy and Friends' Etsy shop. There's a huge variety of colors and even some special birthday tutus with confetti and pompoms mixed in.
Butterfly wings are also a fun addition to the dress-up box. I had a friend whose youngest daughter ran errands one day in a pink leotard with construction paper wings pinned to the back. She was an extremely happy little butterfly with her impromptu wings.
Tiaras are also pretty standard princess garb, as are crowns, but I'm a big fan of flowers. It's something a little different and more natural than the plastic faux jeweled tiara.
There are a million other things that are great in the dress up box. I was reminded recently that, when I was young, some of my favorite dress-up items were my grandma's shoes and old handbags. I raided my own closet, and my "to donate" box, and came up with great scarves, glittery belts and old purses for my daughters to play with. I've also set aside some old shoes that will be princess-worthy once they have a fresh coat of shimmery spray paint.