Creative Play | Disney Cars Toys

Okay, so I admit it. I have an addiction to Disney Cars & Cars 2 toys. My husband has told me, "You know you have a problem." My response continues to be, "Yes, I know. I started buying them for him. But I can't help it, I love them too. At least we play with them, not just collect them."

This started with the Disney Cars movie toys & now has progressed with the Cars 2 toys. The toys in the picture are Siddely Spy Jet, Secret Spy Attack Finn McMissle & Stephenson Spy Train. (Yes, I've memorized their names.) These toys bring out such creativity in our son. Oh, the stories he tells. He doesn't just repeat the storyline. He creates new adventures for the characters to play out. He uses unique voices for each of them. And I get to play along too. How can I resist?

In the latest creative play, our son has dubbed himself "Finn McMissle", my husband as "Professor Z", and me? ... I'm "Holley Shiftwell," of course. It's incredible fun. Professor Z always seems to be out to get Finn & Holley. Miraculously, we usually escape without a scratch. Occasionally, we (by we, I mean the cars we hold & our literal bodies) "crash" on the floor. During creative play, my son & I have British accents. And my husband? Well, I think it's a German accent, not quite sure.

In a world where structured play is lauded, creative play is needed too. The American Academy of Pediatrics and many other pediatric institutions recommend unstructured creative play. The benefits of creative play include family bonding, children's ability to control their environment, decision making, leadership roles, freedom of expression, and relaxation. The parent can often learn more about their child's needs during creative play. This ultimately will help children in their adult life. So much is accomplished with creative play. Best of all, it is fun!

For more information regarding the multiple benefits of creative play, please read more at http://bit.ly/r8W0HQ.


New Year's Resolution: Self Kindness

By now, you probably have your New Year's resolutions.  If not, consider this unusual resolution ... Be kind to yourself.  Give yourself some credit. You probably have a lot on your plate. There are plenty of people out there who are more than willing to be harsh to you. You don't have to be one of those people too.
Or have you run into the thought that your resolutions are too difficult, too many, or already broken?   How about trying something different this year?  Pick one goal & keep it simple.  The laundry list of what you would like to change in your life is often unattainable if the list is too long & too hard. 

Or like many of us, is your resolution to lose weight?  Again, be kind to yourself.  How about focusing on the month's weight loss goal instead of the year?  You are more likely to succeed if you try to change one goal by working on it one day at a time.
How about an even "simpler" resolution?  Do you wish you had more time with your family?  Quality time is crucial.  It doesn't have to be an extravagant vacation.  You don't even have to leave the house.  How about a board game or other uninhibited play?  You would be amazed at what 1 to 2 hours of play, every two weeks could do for your family.

If you can, share this process with your child and/or family. Your internal growth is something they can learn from and follow.  Not to mention, they might offer you a great deal of support.

I hope you all enjoyed your New Year's Eve celebration.  As for my family, it was quiet; just us three.  Quiet is a very rare and special treat.  Dick Clark's New Year's Eve is still amazing!  Screaming the countdown - still my favorite part.

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