Thursday, December 6, 2012

Toddler Christmas shenanigans

I was surfing Pinterest the other day and saw what I thought was an absolutely genius idea -- create a little felt Christmas tree for your toddler to decorate and redecorate, to help keep his curious hands away from the grown-up Christmas decorations.  It's a cute little decoration and toddler distraction device all in one!  What could possibly go wrong?

I was planning a Michaels trip for some Christmas decor already, so I added some felt to my list.  And over Thanksgiving weekend, while watching Star Wars with David while the kids were in bed, I cut out a tree, some ornaments, and some felt presents, to create our very own little Christmas flannelgraph (side note: throwback to Sunday School fun!).

Super cute, right?  All very simply made of felt (with the J, S, and present ribbons hot-glued on).  I couldn't wait for Joshua to wake up and see "his" tree.

And, well, part of my fond vision came true.  Joshua sure loves the felt circles!  It's the latest in a series of things he can gather and sort, so he loves taking them off the tree, stacking them all in a big pile, and either carrying them around the house or FLINGING them violently about...

But the whole distracting-him-from-other-Christmas-decorations thing?  Not so much.

Yep, that's a large stack of felt circles in his hands...  (This snapshot was taken a few days before our Sophia ornament arrived.  And a few minutes before Joshua grabbed the "white cookie" and tried to eat it.)

Thankfully, in the last week or so, I've taught him not to grab at the staircase ornaments or our little tabletop tree.  But he still insisted on non-standard play with the felt ornaments:

What a cute little stinker.  :)

I ended up appealing to Joshua's sense of order and organization in order to entice him to actually put the ornaments on the felt tree.  Once he realized he could sort the ornaments, he went to town playing with the tree:

Star at the top, then the lights, then the circles, then the presents.  One of these days, he'll likely also sort the shapes by color...

The ornaments still spend way more time on the floor or tucked away in random corners than on the felt tree, but Joshua is having a blast playing with the set, so I'm going to call this a mommy win.  ;)  It's a good exercise in picking my battles and letting go of how things are "supposed" to be in the name of allowing Joshua to have some uninhibited fun, too, so it's good for me, right?  It's what I tell myself every time I hear him giggle uproariously as he throws and gathers and throws and gathers and throws and gathers the felt circles...  :)

1 comment:

Erin and Erik said...

We did a felt tree too! And with similar L & E ornaments! Ours has also been used for non-intended play scenarios, but I appreciate your patience with it and will have to call that to mind! (: Love the pics and the cute presents for the bottom!