“Daddy, I want a new car,” my three year old calmly informed my husband this morning as we drove to my mom's house. “...And new toys.” She has a taste for the finer things in life.
We laughed, and I told my husband not to worry. “I can put away some of the toys she’s got out right now, and get out some of the ones she hasn’t played with for a while. It’ll be like she’s got new toys and we won’t have to buy more stuff. I’ll let you take care of the car thing.”
My mom used to stash about half of our toys when my brothers and I were kids. She had them all in a closet in the den, and every six months or so she’d move my dad’s recliner and we’d gather in a little semicircle and watch her unload all the stuff we hadn’t seen for half a year and pile all of the stuff we’d just been playing with back into the darkness of the closet, sealing it away like a time capsule of fun.
|Some of these cars may have|
been the ones to get cycled
in and out of the closet. Now,
my daughter plays with them
at my mom's house.
It didn’t matter how many times she put things away and got them back out, we still held every toy with wonder; since we hadn’t seen it for so long, it was like new! Our Fisher Price Little People house, our Sesame Street Garage, and our various jars of small things (Hot Wheels cars, action figures, and Happy Meal toys) were all things we had for years and years, but we never had a chance to get tired of them.
It was like an extra Christmas!
It’s not like we never got new toys. It wasn’t the same kind of excitement, though; a birthday is special, and you expect to receive gifts, but we never knew when that closet door would be opening to swap out our toys. Birthdays are awesome, but any day that we'd get “Surprise! New toys!” was even awesomer.
Whenever that closet door opened, we got to greet old friends.
I can’t wait to see the look on my daughter’s face when I get out some of her stuff that I stashed in the closet last July. I will smile, and enjoy being on the receiving end of that gape of wonder as I unveil her “new” old toys.
Then I’ll have to ask my husband when we’re going car shopping.