Vivi’s growing up, and becoming such a toddler! One result is that she loves to play…whether it’s with toys or stuff she finds in cupboards, she enjoys getting down, exploring, and playing.
So over the past several months, I’ve been working at getting better at playing. Playing is a weak point for me…I’m not good at it, and it takes a lot of effort to figure out how to play and be creative. So I feel like Vivi’s been entering a stage of life outside of my comfort zone as far as relating to her goes. I’m working at it, because it’s still important to me to spend a lot of time with her. She still enjoys doing things with me, and helping me with my various tasks….but she also loves to play- so if I want to get in plenty of time with her, I’ve gotta figure out this whole creative play thing. :-D
For Christmas, we splurged and bought Vivi a wooden kitchen, and my mom got her a set of playware to go with it. Vivi absolutely loves it. She spends a substantial amount of time playing with it- and always pats the floor and asks Ben and I to “sit!” and play with her….an irresistible plea. It’s fun to see her enjoying a toy so much as she continues to grow up. She hasn’t really gotten into babies yet, so most of her play (here at home, anyway…grandparents have much more variety of toys!) has been either with pots/pans/spoons, Tupperware, exploring closets and sewing buckets, baby toys and wedgits. So, the kitchen is a little different- being more of a “pretend play” item.
She loves it as much as we thought she would….but there’s been an unexpected blessing, too- it’s helped me play with her. I might not be creative….but I know how a kitchen works. My play might look awkward…but I can pretend I’m doing my typical deal in the kitchen while playing with Vivi, and making her day. And then Vivi can join me in my kitchen…. :-) Playdough’s something else we’ve played with more the past couple months, which works well for us, too. Going outside is another great way for us to interact…play together, find things together (her ears and eyes are amazing- she always is the one to hear/see things first), etc. Personally, it’ll be nicer when spring hits….but Vivi doesn’t see things that way. :-)
I hadn’t ever thought of it before…but having tools you can play well with is really helpful in playing and spending time with your kiddos. I’m keeping it on file in my memory, and sometimes I might not hesitate to invest in something I know I could enjoy doing with Vivi or Timothy.
What are you good at? What realms are you creative in? How can you work into your child’s life and interests, in addition to working them into yours?