Saturday, 13 December 2014

Play time!

LS reminded me of my childhood.

There was just one basket of toys. It was a big basket, bigger than the pails of stuff from 中元节 celebrations but smaller than the ones you put durians in, if these are any indications!! Anyway, we used to pour all the toys on the floor to play as the basket was too deep to reach in for buried items. I remember a sense of panic that I would never be able to put everything back, hmmm..

I no longer remember everything that was inside the basket. I remember a fake Barbie, some buckets and spades etc, and the rest were probably Happy Meal toys. At some point, we were fighting over Lego bricks handed down from some far relatives. There was also a wooden piano that I loved. And a dog the size of a primary school kid that was on display until Mother started taking care of someone else's kid!

Our kids are much more fortunate - ZK has rail tracks, a police station and a car park at home in addition to a box of toys and some soft toys on his bed, and a whole drawer of cars and buses and construction trucks at Mum's place, among others. ZY has inherited some toys from his brother and he also has a few new items.

But I think ZK's favourite toy is any smart phone. He'll look for the YouTube app, click on it, and ask for "bus" if there isn't already a screen full of videos of bus. I no longer remember how it started but I really regret that day!! Yes, the phone is super useful when he's cranky but I always worry for his eyes and even more importantly, his range of activities.

A case of 上梁不正?*.*

Two Fridays ago when the centre was closed, we went to Mother's place. There were few toys and I didn't whip out my phone. But ZK remembered the boxes and the dog from the last trip there, and I was amazed at how they occupied him for two hours.

Repeatedly opening and closing and stacking the three Russian doll boxes

In the past couple of months, he has been using the vitamin bottles in his toy box at home to make food for us - mooncake, cake, strawberry cake, and even blueberries! He'll bring the bottles to us to taste and answer when we ask him what they contain. We can also order food from him. It was like how we used to play cooking - I loved frying char kway teow using bricks as food and a kiddy chair as a wok, as the latter resembled the setup at my favourite char kway teow stall next to Grams' provision shop! Nowadays I see people selling toy kitchen sets - they would be so enviable if they don't rob kids of the chance to learn how to improvise and be creative with limited resources!

Bear Bear and friends, enjoy your cake while I figure out this skateboard...

We talked about peeing or pooing at some point, and it somehow led to the dog needing the potty! And the biggest box from the makeshift kitchen turned into a potty!

狗狗 shhh shhh...

Because the dog is anatomically the same as ZK!!!

ZK remembered the fish; even ZY was entralled...

I have been observing what occupies ZK besides the obvious phone. He can stay occupied for a longer time at Mum's place on Sundays than at home. I think he only likes his vehicles - so boy *.* He'll move them around, make the trucks crash, move the bus away and sit on his bed, waiting for the bus to arrive, ferry Mr Bean around in the bus. He even brings his excavator and dump truck into the shower!

I'm trying to expand his range of activities at home. He asks for colouring paper and a pen - yes, a pen, not crayons! - sometimes to draw elephants (a stick) or write abc (also sticks), or have us draw buses for him. So I've printed some animal outlines for him to try colouring :)

I draw circle (it was an oval partly hidden by his hand but, getting there!)

Colouring with Papa at Jamie's Italian - killed a few crayons *.*

And I went to Popular the other day to get some materials - planning a little craft session on Sunday morning! :)

One of his last works from playgroup

Our little handyman copying AhYe fixing his toys!

I also hope to get him outdoor more often too. We spend too much time in the malls *.* The other day, we were at Vivocity when it was drizzling just a teeny bit. He walked into the rain accidentally and was a little surprised. He soon got over that though! I recall a video of a child in winter gear, sitting on a grass patch in a light rain, putting mud into his mouth and spitting it out! He was in a childcare centre in I think Copenhagen - that was a study trip my colleagues went on back in October 2007. To them, that's part of exploration. I won't go as far - mud leh!! - but rain is fine. Just need to dry him.

Happy in a slight drizzle at Vivocity

Play for the little brother is limited to his gym and play mat. He can spend a long time at the baby gym, pulling and chewing on the rattles hanging above his head. Sometimes, he falls asleep :p Just now, I also placed Jigajung next to him to encourage him to flip over to get it. No luck even though he can turn all the way to his right already. Oh well, I can wait.

I have switched from the sling to the baby carrier. He isn't too ready for front facing so he's just looking around left and right when in the carrier. Sometimes he faces forward and up, and smiles at me :) Can't wait to carry him facing out so that he can see the world!

I'm not feeling well (again!) - left work at lunch yesterday. Still sneezing away now. Hopefully I can get better by afternoon so that we can go out somewhere in the evening! Time for play, my boys!

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