Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Of Toddlers and Tea Parties

One of the things the Bumper received from her grandparents for her third birthday was a musical play tea set. That's right musical, the tea pot "sings" I'm a Little Teapot. I plastered a smile on my face and politely said thank you. In my head I was thinking "Oh no! Not another noisy toy!"
Well, the Bumper fell in love with the tea set even before it was out of the box. She could hardly wait for me to take away the package, and once I did she promptly served tea to her grandparents. Even though I switched the dial to off, it did not take the Bumper long to figure out how to turn on the sound. I contemplated taking out the batteries, but seeing her jumping with excitement when the kettle made pouring noises stayed my hand. I am glad. For something wonderful happened.

After the initial excitement wore off, the Bumper seemed to forget about the little play set and I thought that would be that.  A few weeks later she discovered it again and this time the figured out how to make it play the song. She was ecstatic!  she jumped, she danced and she sang. Then she insisted I find the lyrics online and perform the dance that goes along with the lyrics. I obliged and I had so much fun showing the Bumper how to be the little teapot. We spent about three hours (not kidding) doing this until she learned the song and the movements by heart.

Since that afternoon we have had many pretend picnic tea parties, but the music has stayed off. The Bumper turned off the sound herself at the end of our dance party. She decided she likes quiet tea parties instead. She still likes the song and dance and every so often I catch her singing it to herself and making the movements.

A toy I thought would be a nuisance turned into something that opened the doors of imagination for the Bumper. I am glad to have been wrong on this one. I love watching her play and invent stories for her stuffed animals.


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