Sunday, June 8, 2008

Toys Are Us

When my son was born, I could contain the number of young baby accesories he had in one corner of one room. He had a carseat, a playpen, a crib. A few rattles maybe. His "bouncy seat" did double duty as my knee. Almost anything I needed, I could find at Giant, choosing bottles by the size, as opposed to the least poisonous.

Before I became pregnant again, I proudly touted myself as being anti contraption. My knees were older, but they could still bounce. Mostly. What I didn't count on was the beautiful generosity of friends, coupled with my inability to say no to anything made of plastic by Graco or Fischer Price.

Therefore, we currently have in our possession the following: three exersaucers, one doorway bouncer, one stand alone bouncer, three floor mat 'gyms' (two with overhead arches from which to hang toys), two swings, two bouncy seats, and a box full of miscellaneous items all made out of red, blue, green, yellow, orange, purple, lime, black, white, striped, polka dotted, fish, bear, bird and bug emblazoned, wavy lined, rainbow decorated plastic.

If you've never heard of something in the previous paragraph, don't worry. Just finish your coffee and your paper and enjoy your neutral toned, cleaned lined life like a sensible person. I'll be there to join you in approximately ten years.

Clearly my anti toy bark was much more aggressive than my bite. My children actually have a circuit. We move from activity to activity every fifteen or so minutes. Now, I cannot imagine how I planned to navigate the day bouncing two children on my cartilege challenged knees. My dining room could serve as the set for any one of ten children's catalog shoots.

I am in the process of carving out a playroom in my basement, where these items can go live happy lives and stop mocking the grown up furniture. I'll have more space in the play area than I do in my dining room, which presumably means I will take on even more plastic.

But that's okay. As long as I don't look back at pictures of myself clad in heels and a leather jacket, shepharding my small firstborn to his various appointments, with a rolodex bursting with evidence of having a life, and compare it to a person clad in waist high jeans, a matching earring and sweater set who lives only to assemble the next soccer game snack tray, I think I'll be okay.

Even if something small, shiny and plastic does tend to fall out of my purse from time to time.

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