Some time ago, I wrote a post about how organized I was with Mr. C’s toys. This parenting thing is easy, I wrote, how can someone not be organized, I know where everything is. That was when he was much younger, his toys had fewer parts, and they were much larger parts so small children could not choke on them. Now though, the number of toys has increased, and the number of parts has exploded. I am no longer at all organized, I can’t even find that old post much less locate specific parts for his toys. I know, he should learn how to keep track of his own things. He does to a certain extent, but I think that if I can help locate things then I will.
So I started filling up a bureau drawer with the random bits and pieces I came across on the floor, behind furniture, stuck between the radiator fins, or anywhere else I might find things. I thought I would then take some time and then find where the piece belongs and put it back with its matching set or do some repair work if needed. But I hardly ever actually do that. Partly because I don’t end up having any time to do that, but mostly it’s because I usually can’t find the matching toy the broken bit goes to anyway. At some point I’ll just have to go through that drawer, sort it out, and probably throw out most of those little bits. He’ll most likely be in high school by the time I get around to doing that.
Mr. C almost always does not get upset when he comes across something that is broken. So it’s not as though I’m keeping these parts around to stop a potential tantrum. I suppose I’m keeping them since I like a mystery, or solving a puzzle. Or maybe it’s just my frugal nature and I can’t bear to think that something is not being used to its full potential. Aha, here’s that missing truck tire! Now we can get that farm set going again, with this missing tractor tire we’ll have the farm set up and running in no time!
Of the parts I find, I’d say that I end up making a match back to the toy 10% of the time. The rest of the time I have no idea where the part is supposed to go. Here’s an example; what is this, looks like a glove. Where does it go, I have no idea. Should I keep it ? Will Mr. C be upset when he comes across his hand-less figure ?
Or this? Looks like a part of a farm gate, or maybe a truck gate. Is the truck it goes with still around ? I have no idea.
Does this go with the piece above ? Looks similar.
I know what this is. It’s a hand from a Lego person. Somewhere there is a Lego person with one hand.
Ms. J has a slightly different policy regarding these toy parts. She doesn’t think its crazy of me to try to keep these random bits aside, but if there is a ‘clunk clunk’ sound when she is vacuuming she will continue with the vacuuming. Oh well, bye bye Lego hand. I however will scan the floor beforehand to see if there’s anything around. If it’s completely unidentifiable, off it goes into the vacuum. But if it looks like it could be fixed, I’ll set it aside. And I do admit that I have opened up the vacuum, taken out the bag and searched for a piece that I have sucked up. Yes, that is a little crazy, I know. I can’t say that Ms. J’s policy is completely wrong, especially since the drawer of broken toys that I’ve picked up, aka the ‘mystery drawer’, is now overflowing and I have trouble closing it.
I will sometimes be able to fix a broken piece, and Mr. C will be thrilled that the toy is restored. Hooray, hooray, he’ll shout. However, an unintended consequence of this is that Mr. C assumes that I can fix anything. While vacuuming a few days ago I came across a little black piece of plastic. It was about the size of a raisin cut in half. Kind of looked like a raisin cut in half too. What is this, I asked Mr. C. Normally, it would have fallen into the ‘completely unidentifiable’ category and I would have let it go up the vacuum tube. To my surprise, he knew exactly what it was. That’s Spongebob’s foot, he said.
He has a Spongebob Squarepants keychain which he likes to use to pretend to lock the door when we go out. He found it and showed me where the missing foot was supposed to be.
You can fix it, Dada!, he said.
Here he is, sans foot.
Maybe as an added incentive to get me to fix it, he started to have the little figure walk around. ‘Ow, my foot is gone, ow, ow, where’s my foot ?’ he would say.
Whenever he wants to have me fix something he will suggest I use Gorilla Glue. It’s a brand of glue that uses a gorilla as their mascot. It works on everything. Everything except a tiny Spongebob leg that is about the size of a strand of spaghetti.
“Try Monkey Head Glue!” he shouts
What if we put a bandage on his leg ? I asked him.
How will he drive his car ? he answered.