Feeding the kids’ Lego obsession

So after Christmas 2015 my husband and I went on a CLEARANCE AISLE rampage where we bought a ton of stuff discounted! We basically spent half of what we could have spent if we had gotten stuff full price. The most expensive one we purchased was the Friends Heartlake Shopping Mall. So because there were lots of Lego’s on clearance we got just about every one we came across while we were shopping for only a week. (which we did at 3 different Walmart’s, 2 Kmart’s and a Toys R Us) I’m only going to post pictures of the Lego’s though and not all the other stuff. So the older 3 kids get these Lego’s this year. I can’t wait to help them build them!

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Feeding the kids’ Lego obsession

Eccentric Kids: Breaking Gender Norms

My son’s LOVE to sing and dance and dress up and play with dolls with their sisters. They are a bit eccentric and we’re okay with that.

We don’t have the mindset that it’s wrong to let boys wear dresses or hairbands or high heels or playing with dolls if that’s what gives them joy and amusement. If our daughters want to play in the dirt, wear tough fake tattoos or wear t-shirts, ball caps and jeans instead of dresses that’s fine too. We don’t believe it’s going to lead them down the road to homosexuality because we don’t believe that’s a choice, we believe it’s genetic. (not trying to burst anyone else’s bubble of beliefs)

I don’t see anything wrong with my son’s looking up to princesses as heroins. I don’t see anything wrong with letting my son’s prance around in girl clothes and sing to their favorite songs, especially the Disney ones. I don’t see anything wrong letting them play with barbies, dolls, tea-parties, dollhouses, or (girly) toys and even girl clothes the like.

My son’s just like my daughter’s like to have their nails painted. They like their hair brushed. They like doing just about everything their sister’s like doing and vice versa. They enjoy playing with their sisters even if it means turning away from their trucks, blocks, monsters and super hero figures… even though most the time it’s all included.

When Disney’s Frozen came out, my boys (ages 3 and 5) were obsessed. They wanted to be the Snow Queen. One of their favorite pass-times was dressing up as Elsa and singing “Let It Go” through the entire house, that movie was on repeat all day long. (thankfully that has subsided lol but it was still cute, the photo below was my 3 year old singing)

It’s all the same things I used to do with my brother and he was the only boy with three sisters, so a lot of the time if he wanted someone to play with it had to include “girl” things. I know my children’s likes and dislikes will change over time. We have 3 girls and 3 boys, for now we’re just letting them free-play as they like.

It breaks my heart to know that so many people including parents shame children for having an imagination and innocence to playing dress-up and like things that may not be “normal” for their gender.

One day my son said he liked pink and my other son said “You can’t like pink that’s a girl color.” And my husband chimed in “One of my favorite colors is pink.” He’s tried to explain to the children that colors don’t mean boy or girl. Just like toys aren’t specifically meant for girls if a boy likes it. Pink or not. Since then they felt okay to say they likes purples and pinks and turquoise. I don’t want them to feel like they have to hide behind what society thinks is right for their gender. I don’t want my kids to have to feel like they have to hide who they are or who they want to be.

I will let my children express themselves in play and dress-up all day long and will not tolerate anyone telling them they can’t. Telling them “they need to stop, they aren’t girls”, “get him out of that dress, he’s not gay” really boils my blood. Who said they were trying to be girls in the first place? Just because they have fun and are breaking the gender norms? I wish some people would stop being so old fashion, closed-minded, molding children to be sexist and pushing their gender views on them. I will never tell my son that he can’t do something because he’s not a girl and I will never tell my daughters they can’t do something because they are not a boy. (a part from reproductions of course)

We do a lot of play activity that is “all gender” because it helps both our girls and boys play equally without the anxiety or pressure from the stereotypes of society and what’s expected of them in the world. If they all want to play in dirt, they do. If they want to paint their nails, they do. If they want to do their hair, they do. If they want to play dress up, they do. If they want to draw fashion outfits, they do. If they want to ride bikes, they do. If they want to go swimming, they do. If they want a tea party, they do. If they want to play barbies, they do. If they want to play trains or cars, they do. If they want to bake, they do. If they want to help cook, they do. If they want to play sports, they do. If they want to dance, they do. If they want to sing, they do. I can’t stress this enough, I will always tell my children they can do whatever they want to do regardless their gender.

I don’t believe in shaming boys for being a little more sensitive than others or girls for being more tough than others. There is a difference in exploring the different gender roles that they are learning as children than a child who truly is unhappy with being the gender they are because they know and feel they are different. Even so not necessarily meaning they are homosexual, but even if they were, I would accept that with open arms as well. I will always accept my children for who they are. Straight, Homosexual or Indifferent. I do not believe letting them play as children innocently do is going to effect that in the slightest.

 

This picture was after they were walking through the house laughing and giggling and my daughter told me to take a picture. Afterwards they did their own fashion show and included 2 of their other siblings to dress in the opposite attire. Silly kids. All in good fun. You can just see the joy they have in just having fun and that’s just CLOTHES! The positive things are: they were playing peacefully together not pulling each others hair out, they were laughing and smiling, they were bonding, they were happy. Isn’t that all that matters?

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Proud free-play mom all the way!

#freeplay

Eccentric Kids: Breaking Gender Norms

Renewed table, endless play

My aunt and uncle made my little sister a table and chairs set, with mod podged Winnie the Pooh cutouts from a book, when she was young. It sat retired in my mother’s basement for over a decade. I asked her if I could have it to give it to my kids and she didn’t hesitate to say yes.

I took it out of the dusty damp basement and sprayed down all the cobwebs. I wiped them with a rag and loaded it up in my van. I had a vision for what I wanted to do with the table, but I didn’t know when I’d get around to it. For a while I left it as is and let the kids play with it in their space.

Until last night. I scraped off as much of the “Winnie the Pooh” decals I could. Finally opened the gallon of paint and started on with it. (the paint was leftover from our downstairs walls when we moved in so it didn’t cost us anything) I couldn’t get all of the images off and I’m impatient, so my job was half-ass. My husband told me I should have sanded it down first. So this project may end up having to be done a second time.

I put the first coat on last night and this morning I put on the second coat. For now (until we end up redoing it in the future) it has 2 nice clean coats of paint and it definitely revitalized it and brought it back to life. Instead of keeping it downstairs in the kids space, I moved it upstairs so I can make sure it’s not being mistreated. After all it is a part of not only my sister’s childhood, but my own as well. (I remember playing kitchen and reading books at the table with my little sister when I was young)

Here’s what it looked like before. Very dingy and stained from being in a basement.

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This is after. It looks great!

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The kids have shown more interest in it now than they did when it was downstairs. They have been playing with it non-stop for pretend tea parties, restaurant and just sitting at it chatting. I love the imaginative interaction it is giving them.

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Tea party set was a custom made set I ordered for my daughter’s 6th birthday in 2012 from Drumming Beetle. My daughter always kept it tucked away instead of playing with it and now she’s letting her younger siblings enjoy it. I’m glad to be seeing it in action once again.

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Renewed table, endless play

Disney Mural Done.

It’s been a long wait for my motivation to come back to me after I did the majority of the painting, but alas fast forward not touching it for 4 months, this week I got the last bit of painting done and granted I have a few finishing touches (because I see every flaw I made and I’m somewhat of a perfectionist sometimes)

So… TADA!!! Here’s the mural I painted in the kids living room/den/playroom.

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The void under the mural is going to be custom built cubicle shelving for books and canvas totes for the kids toys. I knew I had to finish the mural if I wanted the shelves, among other inspiration I just finally picked up the brush and finished.

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Disney Mural Done.

Voodoo and Ragdolls

I have never attempted to make dolls before in my life. Last night I was looking at some of my crafting materials while throwing mismatch socks into a basket… ah ha!!! I’ve always wanted to make a sock doll. So I got everything I needed together and I started.

After finishing the doll I sewed a felt dress for her. While I was creating this neat little doll my youngest daughter comes in and lets out an ecstatic shriek, IS THAT MY NEW DOLL!? I said sure she is and handed her over. She adored her.

I couldn’t get her to put her down for the rest of the day which made the other children want dolls of their own. So away I went… working my fingers to death. lol

I had already made littleĀ  voodoo dolls for my own use, but decided I can always make more for me and so I added eyes and gave them to my oldest and middle sons.

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So my next craft was to make my oldest daughter her own ragdoll and she sat and watched as she was created. Here’s a picture of the girls and their ragdolls below (excuse my daughter’s pizza sauce face she had just run away from the table to take a picture with her sister)

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The girls didn’t mind that their dolls were bald. But after I showed them the yarn I did have here already, they just wanted them to have it. So here is the transformation from bald dollies, to some yarn hair. (this was my first ever attempt at something like this, it’s a learning progress)

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After I did the hair, I had been thinking of mermaids, which of course led me to start making one. A zombie one.

I took a picture of the voodoo man, zombie mermaid and the green monster.

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I definitely see more dolls in my future. I love creating them. They are so cute, or at least I think so anyways and the kids LOVE THEM!

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The fairy ragdoll I made my step-daughter per her request. She loves it.

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Our girls had endless fun with their dolls all weekend long.IMG_5730

Voodoo and Ragdolls

Lego Obsessions

Who doesn’t love legos!?

I can remember playing with Duplo legos when I was young, but I never had the opportunity to play with the more intricate lego sets. As a mother, I have found that my children are absolutely obsessed with legos from their very first time being able to play with some, and I have grown to love them too! Now we gift legos to them just about every opportunity we get, just wait until Christmas. We already bought all 6 kids their Christmas presents and it’s mostly all legos for the older kids.

I have 3 children whose birthdays fall into the same week as my own (May 14, 15, 16 & 20). A lot of May birthdays, so we celebrated them all over the weekend. My oldest daughter got 3 sets of legos between her grandparents gift and our gift to her. Each one has many pieces and extensive instruction manuals.

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Last night my 10 year old and I put together the Elves set she got. It took an hour to complete and I did not realize how complex and time consuming lego building actually was until that moment. But it was neat to watch as the instructions grew this blob of blocks into a neat little structured creation

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My youngest daughter who actually turned 4 today, got a duplo set yesterday that she had been asking us to get her for an entire month. She was so excited to open that present.

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She continues to put it together, take it apart and put it together all by herself and she loves it.

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Even my son who is about to turn 5 got a little lego set for his birthday.

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My husband and I wanted to build the kids a lego room but have since had a change of plans. For now we just help keep their sets organized and have bought them bins to keep them in so the pieces do not get mixed up. We’ve definitely turned into a lego household within the past year since our children are getting old enough to really play with them. I can admit myself that I think legos are pretty freaking neat. I think my husband and I may be equally excitable from them. We can’t even go into the store without having to walk down the lego aisles just to see if there are any we want to get next.

Lego Obsessions