Monday, December 6, 2010

More Natural Play Please

So the holidays are upon us.  It has me thinking even more about what kind of gifts i would like our daughter to be getting.  What kind of toys i would like her to have.  It is something i've thought of before, but i haven't talked too much about it.

I've spent a lot of time around children and a lot of time around the toys most of those children play with.  I've noticed that many children just have too many toys, and they are toys that do not encourage imaginative play.  Lots of toys are made of plastic, need batteries, are over stimulating and break easily.  Is that really what i want for my children?

No, it is not.  I want toys that my children will enjoy for years to come.  I want toys made from natural materials and are not hazards to my children's health.  I want toys that help my children to imagine and think about things.  I want toys they will treasure.  

I want toys like these:

Stacking Cups from Magic Cabin
Wooden Fruit and Vegetable Set by Nova Naturals Toys and Crafts

Wash Day Fun by Magic Cabin

Peek-a-Boo Roller by Oompa

Element Blocks by Magic Cabin (I LOVE these!!!)

 Waldorf Doll Mortiz by Waldorf Treasures

Face Pencils by Nova Natural Toys and Crafts

Now, as i said above, i want toys that are not hazards to my children's health.  Almost all toys on the market are made from plastic.    These plastics are made from things like polyvinyl chloride, or PVC.  And PVC is made from phthalates. The most common phthalates are di-ethylhexyl-phthalate (DEHP), di-isodecyl phthalate (DIDP), and di-isononyl-phthalate (DINP).  One of the problems with Phthalates is that they act in a way that is similar to hormones in our body.  This can disrupt our hormone balance and hormones effect *so many* important functions in our body.  Other possible problems are that phthalates can lead to kidney problems, cardiac and respiratory arrest and cancer. (Source)

Now i can go on and on but i won't (if you want to know more about the dangerous health effects you can read my source).  I know that many things around is have been found to cause negative effects in our bodies, and i know that i cannot keep everything that is harmful away from my children.  But i can at least *limit* those negative things in their life to try and give them a better chance at a healthier life.  If i can keep disease causing toys away from my children, i will try.

Now I'm sure that many parents would love to get toys like the ones i shared above for their children.  But one major problem most parents/grandparents/aunts/uncles/friends find these toys overly expensive.  I know that I am shocked many times by the price tag on some of these toys.  But for me personally, id' rather have one "natural" toy that will last for many many many years than a 10 "junk toys".  If a family member or friend wanted to get a toy like the ones we desire for our children, but can't afford one, i understand.  But i would rather them give us the money to put towards a toy than to buy a "junk toy".  

Or better yet, make a toy themselves.  There are so many easy toys out there to make :)  Fabric blocks, bean bags, simple wooden puzzles, dolls, doll clothes, finger puppets, quiet books, i could go on and on.  A toy that was made with love means so much more than one bought from a store.  There are many resources out there for parents looking to make toys for their children.

And so, i think i will draw this post to a close.  I hope i have inspired you to go out and acquire more natural toys for your children to play with.  I know i am so excited to start making my daughters *own* toys. 

Are there any toys you have made for your children or loved ones?  Do you have plans or the desire to?


Kitt Gibson said...

I love the toys that you listed - they were the kind of things that I played with as a little girl. I still have many of my dolls and stuffed animals that I had as a child and even two that my mother had as a child (they are now over forty years old and going strong). Good for you for helping your daughter exercise her ever-important imagination.

Amber Smith said...

I love all of the links you have shared. They are now on my "to craft list" Thank you!

Jillyn said...

Kitt: I think that is awesome that you played with toys that your mother did. That is what i'm looking for for our children :) Heirloom toys :)

Amber: I hope you get good use of everything!

Krista said...

I've made BuggaBoo a baby doll and a sling, but he hardly ever plays with them. He does like sleeping iwth his baby, though.

I'm making some sock puppets for him, and I make a lot of clothes for my kiddos. I've always wanted to make a block set from 2x4's.

Anyways, great post.

Jillyn said...

krista: I'm so happy that you love it! I love buggaboo's doll and i think you did an amazing job. I also think the castle your husband built is amazing!

And i too want to make a block set. I hope you like the links i posted.