My almost 3 year old gets bored, I get bored. I think we all do sometimes.
Do you go to the park, mother and baby groups?
We don't own a TV, so we don't have the temptation there. We read books, do puzzles, park trips, shopping.
Your toddler would never be better off with someone besides his mother. He may be happy enough with another caregiver but your his mother, that trumps everything! Don't forget that!
Some children respond better to playgroups than others, this doesn't meant daycare. There are playgroups that meet a few hours every so many days and you'd be involved as well.
Have you looked at any of the interactive computer like toys? Some children love them and can be a good in between with TV.
Have you gotten new toys recently? Ours gets more bored when the toys get stale. We have to remember to get new ones
We're about to have another baby, I'm sure my toddler will find some of that boring, but you know I just see being bored as a part of life, KWIM? Like paying bills, having to go shopping, showering, being bored sometimes is normal.
When my son was 2, I started looking after a baby to make some extra money a few days a week. You might think about looking after a child the same age or a little older to occupy your son. I know someone, somewhere needs a few hours of care a week and your son would have a playmate. Of course, only if you feel up to it! Now the little boy and my son are very close and the days he dosn't come over --we feel sad! Think about it.
i personally think boredom is a good thing. it's what spawns creativity and imagination. if we don't allow our children (and ourselves) to be bored, then we fall into the trap of thinking we are here for the sole purpose of entertaining our children. allow him to be bored. he may come up w/some interesting things on his own.
hey you're not expected to entertain your child at every minute of his waking hours! that's just not possible or even healthy. a little boredom now and then is not harmful. and as you yourself has pointed out, it can even be healthy.
children learn how to entertain themselves as they grow older. some are better at this than others, depending on their personalities. you can encourage this by, as you have been doing, fading into the background once in a while and just letting your child be alone (with you supervising from the background of course).
you'll be amazed at what they can come up with to entertain themselves, completely forgetting about you for a few minutes.