Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Having a ball...

Thoughtful investigation
Originally uploaded by goforchris.
It's amazing how the rediscovery of an old toy can turn the clock back. We dispatched Mr B to the loft to find some of the wooden toys our two had, and he came back triumphant with this one - rainbow coloured wooden balls on poles of varying lengths. The balls are pleasingly solid and shiny, and miraculously there was only one missing.

We had a wonderful half hour while Catriona very carefully lifted off a yellow ball and examined it minutely. She waved it about, poked her finger delicately into the hole, put it to her mouth - and then it slipped and fell to the wooden floor and rolled off under the sideboard and back out again. She was transfixed by this process while we pondered on the obvious uneven-ness of the floorboards. Eventually all the balls were rolling about and we were all laughing helplessly and batting them back and forth.

I don't recall having such fun with this toy 35 years ago. I remember the balls being lost and the horror of stepping on one, as I remember the ritual of collecting them all up at the end of the day. Maybe I simply didn't have the time - or felt I didn't - to sit and watch the mental processes going on as a baby makes sense of a new experience. Maybe I really needed that automatic washing machine and/or some effective disposable nappies - for what I do recall is the hours spent washing terry nappies in a twin tub machine.

I must have been mad. Kids seem to have done all right, though ...


  1. Oh the awful tyranny of the yellow bucket and why did we ever think a twin tub was acceptable?
    It was just yesterday the boys played with that wooden toy wasn't it?

  2. Ah, with age comes wisdom. And, time to sit still and not feel guilty about so doing!

    Automation has certainly helped moms a great deal, but now, at least here, mothers are doomed to endless dispatching kids from one place to the next. Which, BTW, is one reason I am thankful we homeschool! Less peer pressure.(still some, but not as severe!!!!)

    Why is it that we must wait until we are older (no, not implying you are old!) to understand what is REALLY watching a little one play with a toy and interacting with her! Oh, and from the comment your son wrote the other day (re:collecting), I would comend you for having done a (very!) fine job!