Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Unbreak my heart

It's happened. After hundreds of dollars, and hours of happiness around the home made Thomas table - (what? I'm not paying $500 for the real thing), it's finally happened.

Me: You know, we should move your Thomas table up to your bedroom since you don't play with it as much as you used to.
Little Guy: I never play with it. We can give it away. (Note - he didn't say chuck it away. Hurrah!)
Me: (Splutter, choke, sob.) Well, er, I mean, why don't we just move it upstairs so that you can play with it when you feel like it?
LG: Naaah. Let's just give it away.

I was at a loss for words to be honest. He got a few new trains only last Christmas which cost the same as everyone else's presents combined. But actually, it's not the money. Well it is the money, but what can you do when your kids grow? It's me. I can't bear to part with James, Spencer, Thomas and Gordon. Well, Gordon not so much as he's always a bit mean in the stories. Probably has low self-esteem underneath it all though.

When Mr. Minimal (now 13) was little he showed an interest in all the Thomas stuff. We deduced that because he would play at the train table in the Queenager's classroom and clung to it when it was time to leave. We made another table, this time on wheels, to go under his bed. As I recall, he never played with his trains. I ended up giving them all away to a friend. I would like to say that most of them were returned to us when the little guy came along, but she had a huge sewage flood (bloody basements) so everything had to be thrown away. What a waste.

Fortunately, as I may have mentioned, I volunteer at the world's largest garage/jumble sale, so I can donate most of the stuff knowing that it will bring funds to our school's scholarship program. I have carefully packed a couple of trains per plastic bag, written their names on a label, and will hover around come the time of the sale, to make sure they go to a good home. One of the Kindergarten teachers also has a Thomas table, so I am giving him Diesel and Diesel 10, plus Cranky the Crain and the Water Tower. I can pop in from time to time, under the pretence of some vital bit of school stuff, but really to check that no one has sunk their teeth into the beautiful (lead free) paintwork.

You lot with toddlers think that it's only like this when you have to get rid of the strollers/pushchairs, highchairs and changing tables. Oh no. It never ends.

Actually, I would gladly get rid of half the stuff in the Queenager's room, but she's till clinging on to her cuddly toys and porcelain dolls which never come down from the shelves.

PS. I forgot to say that the reason the little guy is so keen to get rid of the Thomas stuff, is that he has his eye on an electric set for his birthday in June. Always an ulterior motive. Have you seen the price of Hornby these days?


  1. Forget shaving, that's a real rite of passage for a boy!

  2. Oh..... it IS a milestone..... but just suppose he got to 16 and still loved the little engines! You wouldn't like it!

  3. You are so right, it never ends -

    And those times when I had to sneak stuff out to charity shops/Goodwill at dead of night, because otherwise my son would fret, even if he hadn't played with something in years...

    Rites of passage, indeed - I still keep a selection of his clothes, shoes and toys - Just a small amount - Just to hold on to those memories, like you and the Thomas table x

  4. Ahh Hornby! I remember it well! I had a huge Hornby set when I was a lad, together with a huge table top set of train track with trees, houses, bridges, people, the whole kaboodle! My Dad pretends that he isn't sentimental but he still has it all up in his loft in London haha

  5. Crikey, if he's into Hornby your problems are just starting. I was in "Hamleys" last month and the hornby area was packed out with London business men buying the latest bit.

    Start saving now.


  6. It's Lego with us. I can't bear to get rid of the boxes and boxes of Lego that are cluttering up the place. (And we've still got thee Playmobil and the Action Man). I've got a post in draft on this side of growing up -must get on with it.

  7. My 2 year old is just getting into the Thomas phase. As for the Hornby - yeah we won't be getting any of them - whew - they are expensive.

  8. I remember the day he fell in love with Thomas ( guilty as charged). I am heartbroken too

  9. There's always an ulterior motive isn't there?!

  10. It's not easy watching them grow up at times. I've had to say goodbye to many characters over the past year as my 5 year old seems to be growing up faster than ever. I was actually most upset to see the back of Peppa Pig as I quite liked the family!

  11. You'd think after 16 years of parenting I'd be tougher! Perhaps it really is just all that bloody money - and the thought of more to spend in the future.

  12. I just got rid of our plastic rocket ship that you insert shapes into, suitable age 12 - 24 months. i should have got rid of it a while ago. It's a heartwrench even though I hate the sodding thing.

    PS - Gordon is a pompous arse but it's Thomas who I'd like to slap if I ever met him in real life. Percy - now he's a decent fellow. And Edward's nice too.

    PPS - i must get out more.

  13. it really is the end of an era (guess what's in a huge box in OUR attic!) I thought the train days would never end, have images seared in my head of F10, sobbing, bashing two trains together the wrong way round so they won't stick and thinking (me) that I would go insane if I had to go and turn the trains round for him AGAIN and now I miss them like mad! T12 used to call Percy Herpes (a muddled thing, amusing tho, now, not then, him bawling, "HAVE YOU GOT HERPES!!" at me)

  14. Your son has a shrewd eye! He's right to angle for the Hornby train set. I hope you aren't going to disappoint him?

  15. Worth keeping for the grandchildren...?

    I'm rather fond of our train track, but it originated with my brothers (my parents went on holiday to Denmark, and bought some wooden track from this lesser known Danish toy company called Brio), so I feel it is well on the way to heirloom status. When a friend offered to buy it, I declined.

  16. Oh, it brings it all back, and it's good to keep stuff for a while. I know I now wish I'd kept some things for Grandson! The only things we all have far too many of are large, soft, stuffed pretend animals!!! I can't count the number of black bin bags we had in the loft when I last moved - and of course they didn't want any of them.. M :-)


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