Saturday, January 8, 2011

Why buy toys?

Some parents spend a lot of money on toys.  We don't but we don't really have space for them, and they get enough gifts that it's more than enough. With 5 kids, that's easy. Actually, it's hard to not get repeats of things you already have.

It should also be said that I don't believe in entertaining kids. Leaving them to their own devices may lead to trouble but it also fosters creativity, imagination and experimentation.

If you watch kids play, most often times they can find something to play with. Kids are resourceful. So it need not even be toys. Take a crawling infant, for example. The are so much more interested in the Tupperware drawer, the pots and pans cupboard or the dog dish, than those cute little blocks or the Up Up Elm0 you got them. Or, they're just as happy to play with the box it came in.

So ... Wait.

Oh my gosh. We interrupt this programming to faint at how silent my kids are. Who knew Thomas the Train could be so fascinating? Thank you, PBS, for having alternate weekend programming. Cuz if I had to see that same episode of Cat in the Hat one. more. time. this week, I might have just... just... gotten cable.

Rabbit trail over. On with the story.

Oh, and it's important to point out how kids are like sponges, soaking up everything around them. It's when they get to be 4, 5, 6 that this gets a little dangerous. They start to pick up on things they didn't before - things in conversation, things in commercials. They also get more, uh, perceptive about "adult" things, but I won't go into that here.

So I was in the bathroom this morning and overhearing conversation of my kids playing in the next room. At first, they were playing "shots", taking turns injecting each other. A typical, innocent game of "doctor." Then Koko says, Hey, why don't we play waxing and you can surprise me by ripping it off."

Wait... What the??? Where did she get that from? (thinking, thinking) (suddenly dawning on me) Ohhhhh... Yeah. That commercial from The Bachelor about the Manscaper lady as she tortured waxed very hairy men. Good. Lord. Can we please get ratings on commercials?!?! I hate that they show these disgusting ones during non-prime time hours. And, the one from "V" with the lady and her scary fang teeth? Ew gross! Fortunately, even George said "I don't think I can watch that show, mom." I said, "Yeah, I don't think I can watch it either." Anyway. Back to toys.

I pop my head out of the bathroom and see the girls sitting on the couch playing with the manual pump parts of my breast pump, using them as syringes, while Boots was filling up my guitar case with "gas" using the tubes.

See? Who needs toys? Just give them a breast pump and they'll be entertained for hours.

Or, change the programming on PBS, as now they're watching Barney, and equally as silent.


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