Okay, I may not win the award for most old-fashioned mom, but I do like to think my children enjoy as much good, old-time fun and activity as they do “screen time.” When it comes to toys, my 5-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son have lots of things that flash lights, play music, talk and move (powered by myriad batteries, of course). But they often gravitate toward the simpler toys, and things that really aren’t toys at all (like boards, rocks, sticks, cardboard boxes, shoes, scarves, pots and pans).You know, toys that encourage them to use that word I used to hear all the time when I was little: imagination.
Below, in no particular order, is a list of my children’s (and my) favorite toys from Lehman’s. Imagination is required, not batteries. Perhaps your children would enjoy a dose of “old-fashioned,” too.
- Wooden Marble Rack. My kids’ current favorite! And, since our son is on the young side for this toy, we (and grandparents and babysitters, etc.) get to sit down on the floor and supervise/play with him. Why is watching those marbles roll down and around, down and around so fascinating and pleasant, even after all these years?
- James Herriot Hardcover Treasury. This one has a huge nostalgia factor for me. My dad read these stories when my sister and I were little, the three of us cuddled into a big armchair beside the wood stove. Our favorites were Moses the Kitten and Only One Woof. We actually adopted a stray puppy who looked just like the dog in the story, Gyp, so we gave him the same name. Unfortunately, our Gyp barked A LOT, sometimes at the neighbor’s dairy cows. Not a good thing. Anyway,Â now I read them to my 5-year-old (she also loves Moses, and Smudge the little lost lamb). These charming, innocent stories will transport you and your children to the idyllic English farm country of long ago.
- Color-Changing Top. Has gotten so much use that the bottom is cracked, but they still pull it out of the toybox and “make it go” on the kitchen floor. Makes a whirring sound that is much less annoying than all their other battery-operated stuff!
- Hand-Sewn Sock Monkey. Ours has been loved so much he’s lost his hat, but his little bald head almost makes him more lovable. He always gets a laugh.
- Lacing Set. Great for entertainment during car trips and church!
Lehman’s Racer Sleds. These need no explanation. They’re just plain fun. For grownups, too.
- Child’s Wheelbarrow and Garden Tool Set. Our little wheelbarrow gets used year around. My son was so proud when he figured out how to push it all by himself. Great for filling with leaves and then dumping on your sister.
- Lehman’s Red Wagons. We use ours *all* the time – all four seasons. Great for walks around the neighborhood, down the street to the local greenhouse (the kids can ride and it holds all our veggie seedlings), to the annual county fair and for messing around in the driveway. When my son was in the toddler “put-and-take” stage, he’d spend forever just taking the sides off and putting them on again. A VERY sturdy wagon that will last.
- Little House Books Complete Boxed Set. Disclaimer: We don’t actually own this yet, but I am counting down the days untilÂ my daughter is old enough to start a nightly bedtime ritual with these. I can’t wait, I can’t wait, I can’t wait! Again, HUGE nostalgia (grin).
- Barnyard Friends Plush Set. We’ve had this since my daughter was a baby, and my kids still play with it. I’ve given several as gifts at baby showers and little ones’ first birthday parties, and they are always oohed and ahhhed over. Adorable!
Check out Lehman’s huge selection of toys from yesteryear, and take your kids back this year…wayyyy back.