I don’t normally post things I buy but I feel I should share some of Simon’s favorite things!! These are legit the things he goes to everyday now that the weather is becoming colder. We are not a TV/Screen family so you won’t be hearing the shows on TV or the movies Simon loves. He has yet to sit through a movie – but don’t get me wrong, he loves the times he gets to watch ‘Paw Patrol’ but that’s a show he’s only allowed to watch as a ‘treat’.
He would prefer these favorite things…
Once Simon found his voice, we quickly learned he loves trains. This came at an early age and we knew very quickly this was not a phase. He loves everything to do with trains, which came along with the love for Thomas the Train. His love for Thomas became more of a phase, however he continues to love trains. A few months back we decided to give him a treat for being such a good boy that day. We had just transitioned him into a new house and there were lots of things happening and we felt he needed some extra attention. We went to the dollar store where he could use his money to pick out a special treat. I showed him where the trains were and I wasn’t sure what he would think seeing as these were more like ‘collector’ type trains, not typically a 2 year old would be gravitated toward. He instantly took a liking to this big bulky metal train and he carried that thing everywhere. We later decided to take him to the farm and tractor show at our local mall and he was in complete bliss. He didn’t want to see the toys, or the crafts, he wanted to sit and watch the train-collectors model trains go. Needless to say it was quite the fight to get him to leave the mall that day.
Simon loves books – and when I say he loves books, it doesn’t mean he loves to look at pictures. He will spend countless hours looking through his books and asking us to read 4 at a time (on average). He has his favorite authors and characters in his books he tends to go to. He loves Mercer Mayer books (The Critter Series), Cat in the Hat, and his Leslie Patricelli books. He will comment on practically every page and asking countless questions which I can not get enough of. I will cherish these days where he will sit with me and I will read book after book for an entire evening.
Puzzles. We’ve recently got Simon into doing wooden puzzles he never seizes to amaze us. I didn’t know how he would do sitting and doing a puzzle seeing as he’s a kid who’s imagination keeps going and going. What 2 year old wants to sit and figure out a puzzle? was always my thought. He loves to do a puzzle where he gets to recite what ever the picture is (numbers, letters, animals, etc), however he doesn’t normally do them on his own. He wants us to do it with him so he feels like he can get the recognition once he figures it out. We don’t mind – it’s just another way for us to sit and watch his mind grow. Even though he’s done some of the puzzles a dozen times, the excitement when he completes it fills his little heart.
Play dough! The other day I asked Simon what he would want for Christmas this year. (I’d just like to set the record that we aren’t a family who has a lot of toys in our home. I find that for Simon, the least amount of choices he has the more time he takes to play with them). He right away yelled “Play dough!”. We just recently introduced Simon to play dough. He used to try to eat it countless times so we never really tried again. I got him the classic ‘hair cut’ kit and we spent a whole hour making funny hairdos which later transitioned to him and I making animals. I made a pink fish and he decided he was making a snake who had legs and could fly in the air. When I think his imagination has hit a plateau, he blows my mind with play dough. Plus really, which adult doesn’t love playing play dough too?
Last but not least, he loves educational toys. We recently bought the Magnatab A-Z by Kido for Simon on long road trips and he was instantly hooked. He loves to recite his ABC’s (100x a day) so we thought this would be a great start for him to learn how to hold a pen and practice his ABC’s. We have no expectation that our son will start handwriting at any point but I think it’s a great product for kids to play with and learn the motor skills involved with handwriting. Also, we just recently started doing flash cards with Simon – and this isn’t a disciplined-type activity. I found a set of ABC flash cards on varage sale and he loves to go through them on his own. He normally gets about 3/4 of the pictures right (some are so weird so it doesn’t surprise me he skips over some of them – I mean Q is for Quarry? really?).
As I mentioned earlier, we aren’t a family who has a lot of toys. Often when people ask me what they should buy Simon for Christmas, birthdays and other holidays, I ask them to avoid toys. I encourage them to contribute to a larger gift (like when we bought his train table), or give him books (he can’t get enough books!). We bought a 8 cube shelf from Ikea which we have made into “task boxes”. The top 2 shelves have his books. The 2nd row has puzzles in one and play dough in the other. The third row has his ‘busy books’ and coloring. The last row has his cars/trucks for his train table and his educational toys. We have a rule in our home that Simon can’t grab one box without cleaning up the box he already took out. This took a few days for him to get used to but it was something that we find has been beneficial for him. It allows him to focus on playing with one project without having 100 other things and he tends to play nicer. We are having another little baby coming and having him learn to clean up is important because we would hate for our little one to get into things he shouldn’t!
I’d love to hear some of your kiddos favorite things! Send me a message!