Last night’s post was just too sad. Sorry about that. I actually hung on to it in my queue for 12 hours and then just said whattheheck, let’s post it as part of the honest record. But if you don’t want to comment, that’s okay by me. Here’s a happier thought.
Christmas gifts. I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect “big gift” for my little boy this year. You know what I mean. The one that totally blows him over but he didn’t even know he wanted. It’s gone through several iterations. First it was a wooden dollhouse (More on this in a minute. And yes, I do know he’s a boy.). Then a dollhouse-sized fire station (Good alternative for boys, right? But where are they? I could only find them online, and the materials and workmanship are apparently quite shoddy. If only the fire stations were half as well put-together as the dollhouses out there, I would have bought one!). A garage for his trucks (See fire station). A plastic airport that he saw at Target that he loved and wanted me to buy him on the spot (His first “I want to take this home and play wif it” request — how could I say no? But I did). And then, I found it.
The Plan Toys wooden airport. This thing is so durn cool. I am just in love with it, and I even sprang for the matching little orange biplane. I bought it and hid it and am totally ready for the big morning.
Or at least I thought I was. Then, out shopping yesterday, we found it. The Ryan’s Room Home Sweet Home doll house. Just what I’d been looking for. It’s three stories, 1:12 scale, natural materials, windows that open and shut AND shutters that open and shut, a swinging door, partially furnished, and the whole thing closes up with a magnet so that baby brother can’t get into it and eat the pieces. I casually strolled over and took a look, and Widget ran to the box and glued himself to it like one of the magnets inside. After careful inspection and a quick discussion, we decided to bring it home.
Yup, I bought my boy a dollhouse.
And you know what? I don’t even care what you think of that. He’s been sad lately but can’t tell me why, and it’s starting to concern me. I thought maybe a dollhouse, with a family that has people just like us (the family set includes a Grandpa and Grandma!), would help him work some things out and maybe reveal some things that are going on in his little head. This little guy is everything to me, and it breaks my heart that he tells me sometimes, “Me sad,” or “me sick.” Because he’s not sick. I am. And it makes him sad.
That makes me sad. Very sad.
So last night, I decided to spoil him and provide him with tools to express himself at the same time. We bought the dollhouse (at 1/3 the list price!), brought it home, and put it together all in the same night. We played construction crew while we assembled it. Mommy was the architect who read the directions and put it together. Daddy was the contractor who held the parts in place and tightened the screws. Widget was a worker like in his Richard Scarrey books and helped with every bit of the assembly. (Little Bear must have been the foreman, because he mostly just watched and came over now and then to say hi!) We had a great time building it together and would have happily spent more hours doing it, but it was quick work.
And then, he played. For an hour and a half, he played quietly with the house, arranging the rooms and having his little people family walk up and down the stairs and perform everyday activities like eating dinner together and reading the little boy to sleep. WhyDaddy and I watched in amazement and joined in occasionally at his request.
This morning, he got up and played with it again for an hour.
Of course, he also ran around, climbed into the fort in the back yard, painted, played with play-doh, helped bathe Little Bear, helped with laundry, and crawled in next to me to read big tough Tonka Truck pre-reader books at naptime. He’s still all boy.
But I think he’s got some stories to tell, and I, for one, am all ears.