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do you think I am nuts?!?

February 1, 2010

Dustin and I have been learning a little bit lately about the dangers of plastic (especially PVC and BPA) and are debating asking our friends and family to not get any plastic toys or accessories for our little boy. I don’t want all that scary stuff to end up in his mouth! Call me a hippie. It’s fine.

I read a great post this morning from another blog about keeping it simple with your kids. I want to encourage creativity; I don’t want to always provide it, and I want our home to be simple, yet loving. I know that somethings, as a parent, are beyond my control, but I can still encourage them in my home.

These two paragraphs really stood out to me and I think I am going to go forward with the no-plastic request.

1. Be hyper-selective about your toy selections.

Kids really don’t need many toys – in fact, the less toys “do,” the more room kids have for their imagination. Let the kids play, not the toys. Stick with the classics like wooden blocks, balls, art supplies, and books. They’ll last through multiple children, and they’ll stay fun longer – longer-lasting toys mean less purchases, and less purchases mean a less cluttered home.

2. Make your own toys.

Even better, let household items serve double-duty as both its original purpose and a toy. Dried beans or rice is great fun. Wad up your socks and play dodge ball in the backyard. And who hasn’t seen a kid pore over a simple cardboard box? Kids have a ball making the toys, and the homemade aesthetic furthers the simple living atmosphere in your home. Less toys = having fun with what you have.

3. Rotate those toys.

This is easy to do when they’re younger, so start right away. Only keep out about half the toys you own, and in six months, store those away and bring the others out. In six months, repeat again.Toys will be new again, and you didn’t spend a dime. Plus, the ones that are out to play will probably be played with more.

So, the question is:  Do you think this is too much to ask? Do you see the same value I see? Or… do you think I am nuts?

Image from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/prescod/2709605790/

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Ricci permalink
    February 1, 2010 7:42 pm

    Are you talking about simple toys like say… I dunno, Kung Fu Panda numb-chucks, or light sabers?:) Or wait, maybe crystal gardens from chinatown right? You crack me up:)

    • March 1, 2010 4:14 pm

      Aren’t you hilarious? It’s different when you are only the aunt. You don’t have to be as aware… right? The Chinese Garden doesn’t count because that was always meant to sit on a shelf– far, far away from everyone and thing…

  2. Kelly permalink
    February 1, 2010 8:03 pm

    I totally agree, Britni. You’re not nuts, though perhaps some people will think you are, so you may have to hold your ground on this one if you feel strongly about it. I am planning to do the same, and it will be a little easier because you will have already prepped half the family! (Sorry, but there’s no getting around this stuff when you’re the first!) I had very basic, minimal toys as a child and had tons of fun by using my imagination. And on the health side, you don’t want to mess around with endocrine disruptors and babies. There is a lot we don’t know yet, but what we do know so far is not looking good. Many states currently have legislation in the works to restrict or ban certain plasticizers in children’s products.

  3. Mary permalink
    February 1, 2010 8:06 pm

    I think you are right on the mark. Not an easy thing to do, but a lot of parents are trying very hard to ddo just what you suggest. Just a matter of training those grandparents that pouring stuff on the children is not the way to go. Madison Avenue is a fierce opponent.!!

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