I am currently reading the book ‘Cinderella Ate My Daughter’. I haven’t finished it yet but I’m already getting stressed….and BabyGirl is only 18 months old!
But here’s one way that I’m thinking I might deal with the relentless onslaught of skewed messages that seem to be heading BabyGirl’s (and BabyBoy’s) way.
‘It’s not real, honey.’
As a parent, I have become increasingly consciously interested in the debate on the sexualization of childhood and gender-stereotyping.
Sexualization of childhood is not new. I vividly recall my mother refusing to let 7-year-old me buy an off-the-shoulder party dress like one of my schoolfriends. And it goes without saying that gender stereotyping has been around for longer than any of us can remember.
Here’s a photo of a UK department store which is selling toy cookware in pink and blue ranges, and which is causing me some conflict.
Week 45 – An Old English Post Box (Photo credit: letscommunicate)
A while ago I wrote about how sometimes the simplest toys are the best ones. One of BabyBoy and BabyGirl’s christmas presents makes this point again.
They received an ELC Wooden Post Box (I’ve attached a link to the ELC webpage as I couldn’t find an exact picture of it, but for those who don’t want to click away, it’s basically a toy version of the picture on the right). This is a very simple toy. A square box, with a slot to post five wooden letters into, and a hinged door at the front that can be opened to retrieve the letters. There is also a hole at the back through which letters can be retrieved too.
I love this toy because I had a similar one when I was a child, but I didn’t seriously think it would entertain BabyBoy and BabyGirl for very long. After all, it has no buttons to press, no flashing lights, no sing-a-long music.
But every day, without fail, they pull it out and play with it. Continue reading
A lovely person gave BabyBoy and BabyGirl a wind-up TV, the kind that you wind up and then a picture moves across the ‘screen’. They’ve have been around for years and years. I was thrilled when I saw it as I had one as a child and loved it.
BabyBoy and BabyGirl also love it. There is a problem however – they are not yet able to wind it up themselves, so they call for Multimummy to do it again and again and again and again… Each winding only lasts about a minute. This is not conducive to getting dinner on the table.
So as Christmas approaches a note to all toy-shoppers out there: I don’t recommend buying such a toy for any child who can’t wind it themselves. Mummy will not thank you.
Loopy links (Photo credit: hddod)
Playgro and ELC call them ‘Loopy Links’. Bright Starts calls them ‘Lots of Links’. Whatever they’re called by different manufacturers (and there any many), these colourful, plastic, textured links which can be strung together are another extremely useful, inexpensive toy. We have about 40 distributed throughout the house, car and strollers.
Why? Because they are so versatile.
…toil and trouble? Ok, so this quote is a little off, but bubbles are certainly not trouble, in fact, they are another simple toy that can create hours of fun.
Even young babies will enjoy seeing bubbles drift over them. Older ones will like trying to catch them, and as they become more mobile even chase them. We carry a bottle of bubble fluid in our diaper bag for impromptu bubble sessions when faced with a bored baby (or two). They are also the source of giggles in the bath. Continue reading
Uh-Oh… (Photo credit: Tugnutt)
….are the ones with the most longevity. BabyBoy and BabyGirl have all sorts of toys, many of which make all sorts of weird and wonderful sounds (thank goodness for volume and off switches) but two favourites that have been keeping their attention for months now are their stacking cups and stacking rings.