Monday, August 30, 2010

In One Year

The Legos and I... we have an interesting relationship.

I just realized that it was about a year ago that I was posting about my bright idea.  After too much bickering and too much mess, we had been having a Lego Fast, and then decided on a Lego Re-building Fest.  Yes, we would rebuild every Lego kit we have, restoring all pieces to their proper owners.

Yes, the boys were excited.  At first.

To say that their enthusiasm quickly waned is a wee bit of an understatement.  Does the phrase pushing a rope uphill give you much of an idea?  Well, I have to credit Tate.  My hard-working, meticulous, industrious boy.  He actually, over the course of the year, rebuilt most of his kits and some of his brothers'.  The other boys had much less patience.  It wasn't the actual building of the kits, it was finding all the individual (and often tiny) pieces.  Oh, agony!

Gunnar collapsed in frustration.  And Wyatt just plain quit, announcing that he was too old for Legos, and Tate and Gunnar could play with his.

Shock!  And despair.

In fact, Gunnar said to me, quite sadly, "I wish Wyatt wasn't growing up so fast.  Playing Legos is NOT a two-brother game.  It needs three."

And I think we all realized that it's really a lot more fun to just do your own thing with the pieces.

Fine.  Mix 'em up.  I don't care.  Someday when you grow up and you want your own kits, then you'll be motivated to pick through the thousands and thousands of bricks and sort it out.

And there was much rejoicing.  And much playing.  Even by Wyatt.

But the downside is, the family room... well, let's take a look.

I peek in the door (love those cute little toes!)

Can I get to the closet doors on the left?

Could I get to the bathroom?  Heavily guarded by Star Wars guys?

If I want books, from the bookshelf?  If I dodge the swooping, shooting, space craft?

Are we using the handy-dandy toy sorter, to maintain any kind of order?

So as I gritted my teeth pondered the chaos they had so quickly created, I happened on Deborah's post of a few days ago.  Go read it.  I'll wait. 

Thank you, my friend, for a better perspective!  But I confess, the sight of that room is still having an effect on me like flashing lights apparently do to some epileptics.

Lord have mercy.

At least they're playing together.


Q said...

We had the kits and instructions in individual zip-lock bags, then they got mixed up. I asked the boys what they wanted to do and they said individual bags by kits. But what a pain! So, are you saying that all the Legos are tossed into one mammoth storage bucket? And that's allowed? No Lego blasphemy and/or perhaps I just need to butt-out of the Lego management?

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Oh my... I had a system. We sorted all the instructions (which we still have, BTW) into bags - two for each kid, completed and uncompleted. The Legos were sorted into about 8 different bins according to size and color. Ironically, we found it easier to 'see' pieces if we had more than one color in each bin.

The finished kits were to go into the colored toy-sorter bins, with limited shelf space available for larger kits that don't fit.

Which worked, except that then they couldn't really play with all the pieces!

So now the kids are still using the colored bins to store their creations, but most of the blocks are completely integrated, shall we say, in a big tote. I've given them smaller containers for sorting little pieces, but I'm not supervising it.

And what they don't pick up by the end of the day, I'm taking hostage to be given back as Christmas gifts.

Drives my little organizing heart NUTS but they are having a lot more fun with them than they did trying to reassemble all the kits.

Only problem is, if/when they do want to reassemble kits, they first have to disassemble everything to find all the pieces.

Not my problem. ;D

Felicity said...

Oh my gosh - I have the same problem. I just decided long ago that I am NOT going to sort all those pieces... The two older boys (who share a room) decided they weren't going to either, so they tossed both their collections into a drawer which is now a happy free-for-all (well for the two of them anyway!). Some of the instruction booklets are probably missing, but I do think the kids have more fun just building. They seem to have memorised some of the building instructions (!?) and build the things without the booklets. They're eyeing some of the Star Wars space craft - but them I'm sure they'll keep them separate!

leah said...

We are just now entering the realm of "real" Legos (as opposed to Duplos). Matt got his first two Lego sets and loves it, but I can see the beginnings of the Lego hurricane.

A clean house, sibling harmony, and sanity. Pick any two, because you'll never get all three at the same time! I loved the link to the "real life" post. Now, I'm off to corral some Tonka trucks!

h west said...

This is so good. I think Legos should come with some sort of warning or something. My boys have decided- on their own- to sort theirs in 2 bins. One for Legos and one for Bionicles. My system of sorting is to wait until they are all over the place and then just suck them all up with the vaccuum. It's called the 'Vaccuum Sorting Method'. Maybe should try that one. FORGET keeping the directions. Tried it. They just end up breaking into pieces anyway. My kids have discovered that there are a lot of websites that have Lego instructions on them. Glory be.

The dB family said...

Thank you for the linkage :o)! If it's any consolation, you remember I have ONE boy? His room looks about the same right now. Perspective! Now that I've cooled down in the pool and had supper, things don't look quite so overwhelming.

Oh, and our storage bins (same ones as yours) are a sight for sore eyes too. The critters and dishes are all escaping. *Sigh* soon, very soon the weather will cool and I will be motivated to motivate my children.

I guess we can be thankful the LEGO doesn't actually breed while we're asleep, although I sometimes wonder ;o).


Kristen@nosmallthing said...

Yes, she's correct. And you know? I tried getting the kids to help me put all the kits back together. Hahahahahahahahahaha! I was the only one that cared. So I said forget it. It's more creative to just play with them, anyway.