When my siblings and I were kids, the gifts that got the most attention were the ones that really helped us imagine and pretend we were doing something interesting or important.
In 1965, the year Mom and Dad divorced, there was very little money for Christmas. But because the toys we received that year were very thoughtful and invited us to use our imaginations, they helped our imagination and creativity to flourish. These toys have been loved and appreciated for several years.
One such toy was a convenience store which measured approximately 4 ‘x 2’ x 5 ‘. It was made of cardboard. And you can’t believe the number of hours the three of us played with that thing.
We had a showcase, complete with a window, clock, and brick walls. There was a countertop, shelves, some items to sell, and transaction money. We were ready for business!
You would almost think that thousands of dollars were invested in this “shop”, that the brick was real and that the wooden shelves and countertop were mahogany, if you saw how seriously we took our role as customers and workers of the shop. .
Long after the shop collapsed and disappeared, I thought about it and how fun it was to play!
Children really love to pretend! They can’t wait to grow! Pretending makes him feel a bit of what it’s like to be grown up. And while kids can pretend they don’t use anything, they really love being able to pretend with things that support the roles they pretend to have. This is why toys are so popular!
But what some producers forget is the soil. And, for certain gifts, especially those that in some way relate to a particular type of transportation, when you leave out the terrain or terrain, you miss a great opportunity to help children further explore an additional dimension of their imagination. . Think about how important the tracks are for trains and racing cars!
When our friends invited us to their child’s 4th birthday which was supposed to have a farm theme with real animals etc, I decided to look for a small farm and tractor as a gift for him. I discovered the Playmobil brand and found their adorable portable farm and tractor.
I can’t remember exactly when I realized I just had to create a garden or cultivated area for this gift. But it was pretty fast. It’s almost as if the little girl from 1965 took control of me and said, “It’ll be fine. But it would be a lot MORE fun if we could get the tractor to work in a field!” After all, without land growing the food that animals will eat or be sold to the community, how can the farm function?
So with that, I started planning. I had to work fast. The gift had to be created quickly. The birthday party was the next day!
The earth had to be portable, just like the rest of the gift. So, it should be a mat with a crease in the center and handles. The tractor had to be able to properly adapt to the field so that it could work the soil, weed and help with the harvest. And, the more three-dimensional the garden could be, the better. So, if the soil the vegetables grew in could be taller than the tracks the tractor walked on and if the vegetables could look like they are growing out of the ground, that would be great.
Actually I already had a lot of materials, foam board, glue, silk leaves / flowers, ribbons and yarns, some ink, paint and brushes. I went to the local fabric store and bought some ribbon in simple brown and green patterns and some cool notions that looked like vegetables.
The rows of the garden, the tractor tracks, the access to the dirt road and the grassy areas were initially drawn in pencil. And a good amount of time was left between the steps for drying the glues and paints. The gift was easily completed in time for the party!
Even though everything was measured in advance, I felt I had to confirm that the finished gift was working properly. Then, the tractor was carefully unpacked to make sure it could work in the field. Yahoo! It worked well. The little girl in me was very excited for the little birthday boy. She’d love to be a farmhand if the new farmer needed her help.
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