As Maya has outgrown her toys over the years some of her more favorite toys have made their way into storage bins waiting for new little hands to come along and play with them again. I haven’t had to buy Anna many toys at all because I already had all Maya’s toys. Before Anna was born I pulled out all the young baby toys, the rattles, soft books, teeters, etc, washed them and put them in new toy bins for her. Slowly as she has gotten bigger and more interested in toys I’ve brought out a few new things to add to her little collection.
The other day as she was sitting on the floor playing I decided to bring up a couple of new toys for her. I knew they were going to be a hit not only for Anna but for big sister Maya as well. The toys I brought up were a couple of Maya’s favorites when she was a baby and young toddler. And, I was right. The girls had so much fun playing with the “new” toys. They played together for close to an hour. Anna touching and getting to know her new toys and Maya showing her baby sister how everything works. It was so fun to watch them.
I think Anna was just a little happy to spend some time playing with her much adored big sister.
I’m not sure who enjoyed playing with the “new” toys more I do know that no one enjoyed watching the girls interact more than I did.
There is nothing quite like living through the imagination of a child. Seeing the world through eyes that are not yet tainted with limitations. Seeing a world where anything, truly anything, is possible.
Maya is full on into imagination mode. And, I”m loving it. The games and adventures she creates for herself everyday are priceless. Sometimes I find myself standing quietly in the dining room trying not to let her know I’m there just so I can peak through the doorway into the family room and just watch her imagination run wild. Sometimes I sit down next to her and become part of the little world she has created. The world outside seems like a brighter, nicer, more joyful place in those moments.
Some days she uses her imagination to create stories. She’ll either pick up one of her books and create a story to go along with the pictures or she’ll even pick up one of my novels, study the cover and then “read” through the pages and pages of no pictures creating a story as she goes along. Some days it is endless parties, tea parties, birthday parties, any kind of party you can imagine. She’ll take her my little ponies, her princesses, her stuffed sesame street guys and arrange them all and then serve them tea or have them dance. Some days she’ll pretend she is camping. Some days she’ll be all about families and she’ll create little families that have fun and take care of each other. She always tells me who is who. Yesterday Eeyore was the daddy, her big Minnie Mouse was the mommy and her little Minnie Mouse was the Maya!
Every day is different when you use your imagination. Each morning when Maya wakes up and comes into the family room she enters a different imaginary world. I love watching as the world unfolds and the days adventures begin.
3 year olds may be little people but they sure do have big imaginations.
Some mornings the mess is just too much for me.
The toys scattered all over the floor. Books tossed here and there. Piles of necklaces and princesses and ponies everywhere the eye can see. Plates full of toy food. Stuffed animals under every couch, table and ottoman. It all becomes too much. Trying to walk a path from the entrance of our family room to the couch is impossible and it makes me angry. I force clean ups and discuss the importance of putting a toy away after we are done playing with it. Some mornings I fail to see the beauty of Hurricane Maya and path of destruction she leaves behind.
Other mornings, like this morning, I marvel at the simplicity of childhood as I watch her bounce from one toy to the next. I wonder at and adore the creative juices flowing through her head as she turns the blank slate of a Mr. Potatohead into something beautiful and total her.
Some mornings I see the beauty in that path of destruction. I see the fleeting moments of toddlerhood, those moments that go by way too fast. I hear the laughter and the constant commentary that comes only from the freedom of being able to pull out every toy, of being able to make the biggest mess possible.
Some mornings I look at this mess and I realize that messy mornings = happy mornings
For most of her short little 2 year life Maya has had a love affair with clothes. She wasn’t one of those babies who loved to be naked, and as a toddler still prefers being full dressed to being naked. If given the option to run around naked or put on some clothes she will always choose the latter. The other day I had decided to let her run around for a bit with her diaper and pants off because she had a bit of a diaper rash. She got quite perturbed at this idea and kept asking to me to put her pants back on. I ended up giving in and putting her diaper and pants back on because after she used the potty she cheered and said “yeah, pants back on.” After that display I couldn’t resist giving in to her. She also doesn’t like it when other people don’t have clothes on either. As soon as Lorne gets out of bed in the morning she tells him to put a shirt on. There is no walking around naked at our house with the clothes police living here
Over time this love affair with clothing has grown into a love affair with playing with clothes and playing dress up. Whenever there is a pile of clothes laying around, either to be donated, washed, put away, whatever, Maya will find it and play in it. There have been many gigantic huge clothing everywhere messes made in our house.
Nowadays she usually prefers playing dress up with the clothing she finds versus throwing them all over the place (which is good for me!). Any clothes she finds become dress up clothes.
I am seriously going to have to think about starting a dress up bin for her. Just imagine the fun she would have with a bin full of princess outfits and mommy’s old clothes and shoes