Sunday, January 8, 2012

Oh, Luke Skywalker, where have you been?!

Christmas at the Bramble house brings a brooding cloud of parent shame that is on par with the should-be shame of toddlers-and-tiaras-special-juice parent pushers. There exists in our humble home enough lego to build a second summer home in the Hamptons or, at least, Lake Cowichan - enough for a wrap-around deck and extendo-dock. The collection hit the ground running with #1 and then over the last decade and with child #2 gathered enough momentum to be the natural disaster plot in a Will Smith doomsday flick.

So, it was with some happiness coupled with deep embarrassment that I announce two new babies in the Bramble-lego-brick household: the adorable "Alien Conquest" and its collectible twin "Indiana Jones". Merry Christmas 2011.

And so begins the great clean-up of 2012, for, in order to make room for these enormous new sets, one must reorganize and as I like to say - redistribute (to the neighbours, to charity, to the recycle bin). This past Saturday, as I shuffled and lugged and carted, I rediscovered the joy of rediscovering.

Every baby and child-rearing book touts the power and simplicity of the "put away for a rainy day" toy strategy. But not having read such books since, well, I was pregnant, I guess it had slipped my mind.

You see, my children are spoiled rotten. Like budding hoarders, they are mostly unaware of all the cool stuff they already have. But with a little bait-and-switch, suddenly they are looking at Luke Skywalker as if they had never held his little plastic body in their sweaty, greasy hands or as if they had never snapped his blond hair off and replaced it with Harry Potter's...or Hermione's. They'll be mesmerized anew. For at least 20 minutes.

So, my fellow long-suffering-long-guilty parents, I recommend doing the ol' switcheroo every few months - shuffle a few books, move the playmobil upstairs, and bring the puzzles out of the closet. It'll be like Christmas without well, the Christmas. 

p.s. My 16-year old is going to kill me for lumping him in with his little brother but replace "Luke" with "Winston" and it's all the same. 

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