Mr. O and I don’t buy toys for the kids. I should rephrase, we rarely buy toys for them, but occasionally we do when we see fit and that they earn their merits.
But there are also reasons — we are frugal, on a budget, we don’t like clutter, we have a small house with no extra space to store the collection of toys, most toys are made in China that we find it questionably safe, and the kids get bored of the toys after the hype and enthusiasm died down.
At home they find safe household items to play with and we let them run with their wild imagination of what these items could become. One of their favorite is the cylinder core of the paper towel; they fight to get ownership of this thing whenever the rolls are nearing their end.
PP used to make all kinds of things with it; binoculars, smell-o-meter machine, telescope, and so on. The other day Peanut ran into the kitchen to tell me that he had a beard, and then I saw that he had already drawn a few lines with permanent marker to indicate dark hair then placed the paper core underneath his chin to make it into a beard.
This is just our way of parenting.
I have nothing against buying toys to supplement the children’s play and foster imagination. It’s just that we have our own reasons, then it turned out that the kids are okay with no new toys. Not that they don’t ask for it whenever we take them to a store, not that I don’t have a hard time detaching them away from the chosen toys they see on the racks.
Yes, Yes, and Yes…
But we always talk to them about being responsible of ownership, and give them examples of their past treatments of the old toys. Once they find it reasonable, they were able to walk away; however, they often walk away begrudgingly.
Today was a warm day. In the 70s for that awesomeness weather. (Thanks weather-God!) I let the boys play for almost three hours in the backyard while I was cooking dinner and doing some other things before Mr. O got home. The two neighbor-boys came over to play with them for a little bit, but they were left to play with each other most of the time.
I threw a few items into a reusable grocery bag and let them explore whatever they could do with their imagination.
Emptied yogurt cup, three-way play!
A big nose
A big snout…
and a rhinoceros horn. 😀
and then he put a sand ball to make…yes, you guess it, to make a big boob.
This guy used the cheap shower rings to make a chain that transformed into a fashionable head band for me, and then a tail, then in a different photo (not posted here) he made them into his monkey eye goggles.
Later he picked up a stick and put the chain on to make his own national flag, he called it Noah-national flag.
Taking a little break in between play.