Monday, November 22, 2010

An 'A' in Play

After Wife fell asleep tonight, I went downstairs to find JD and Toodles' toys strewn around the living room. Upon a closer look (after grumbling to myself about the mess) I realized that JD had two or three stations of organized play.

The dinosaurs were set up among the fake trees and boulders. Some guys (a.k.a. action figures) were set up in and around the action figure house (a.k.a. doll house.) There were several matchbox cars parked around the house.

When I saw all of this, I thought to myself, he's getting it.He's thinking about scenes and making up fantasy worlds. While he doesn't always answer my questions the way I would like or relate these fantasies verbally, times like these remind me that he expresses himself in his own way and to a degree that is on par with any other child. On top of that, he has had a verbal explosion in the last couple of weeks.

JD is also taking pictures. After over a month of handling the compact digital we seldom use since picking up a DSLR, I am confident that he will not break it. Not only that, he's actually developing an eye. Here are some examples of his work. (He took every one of these pictures on his own without anyone directing him.) Fun to see the world through his eyes. And one of the blessings of digital is that he can take literally hundreds of pictures at virtually no expense.

Give Presence with your Presents

When thinking about what to get the kids, yours or those of others, keep something in mind. Kids don't remember who got them a particular toy, they remember the people that play with them.

When you give a kid a toy, get on the floor and help them open the box, set it up, and play with it. That's how you'll show your love. That's how a relationship will blossom. When you see the child next time, he or she will remember you as the one who made the funny voice with the doll, but might not remember it was you who gave the present.