Posts Tagged ‘toys’

Parallel Play

All children love to play. They also tend to outgrow their toys very easily and quickly. So when my son goes to his friends’ houses (or vice versa), he enjoys the new (meaning different from his) toys that he gets to play with. And then at this young age of 2 & 3 years, kids aren’t great social beings. In the attempt to teach our kids sharing, we (my friends and I) try to get our kids to play together as much as possible. And it mostly works much to us moms’ relief! 🙂 Occassionally, there’s some screaming and snatching too – am sure all moms agree. 😉

This time my friend and I decided to leave our sons in the play room, on their own. We just carried on with our chit-chat and waited for that inevitable scream. But guess what? About half an hour passed and we had heard no such noise from the room and went to check on them. And what did we see? Our sons were playing quietly by themselves without bothering the other. Na na, not playing with each other. They were playing alone but knew what the other was doing.

Every couple of minutes, one would turn around and see if the other was in the room and then continue with his own game. If one of them left the room, the other would follow a minute later check out what’s happening and then come back to his toy in the room.

It was so nice to see them this way. Parallel play at its best and we mothers felt so good to see them like this. 🙂 Now we’ve decided, we shall get our kids together in a room full of toys and just let them be – they’ll figure out a way to make their time better and maybe, eventually, they’ll start playing with each other. A parent can only hope! 🙂


Big Cook Little Cook

One of the many things I wholeheartedly enjoy doing with my kid is, cooking. It is something I learnt from my mother. I remember spending some fabulous time with my brother, in the kitchen,  helping mom bake our birthday cakes and sometimes even making our own scrambled egg breakfast.

Quite like the Ceebeebie’s ‘Big Cook Little Cook’ show, my four year old and I cook up fun things. And the best part about this is she eats what she makes, no matter how bad it turns out 🙂 !

So then, do try baking cup cakes, fun shaped cookies or for the less adventurous moms and dads, simply hand over a ball of dough and a toy rolling pin to your little one and watch them. This is the best way perhaps to keep them well within your eye-sight while you are in the kitchen, and for sure, is a great way to bond with them. Little minds are like little scheme-engines. Its a little mortifying, the kind of things they can come up with in these play sessions. Don’t be surprised if you five year old rolls out a ‘snake’ or a ‘monster’ and devours it with equal enthusiasm. I assure you, it is a lot of fun.

They say it is good to start your children early on vocational training. Motor skills improve and it is a great opportunity for parents to observe what their child is good at/enjoys/has potential for. A little girl I know loved baking with her mom, but eventually, she enjoyed doing the colour frosting and icing more than anything else. Turns out she is a keen painter and loves experimenting with colours in her drawings.

Its is a great idea to have a birthday tea party, and get all your kid’s friends to bake their own little mini cup cakes. Give them little things to do. Have them all in aprons and watch the little chefs create a mess and have a ball of a time. It can be a lot more fun than a cliché Birthday bash.

I hope you will do these little nothings with your child, who is growing at a lightening speed  and fill up your album of fun memories.

So, how about starting with getting a toy kitchen set for your little ‘un? Or even better, try renting Rentoy’s Tinker Bell Disney Fairies Tea Set! It is available in the trial catalogue too. Buy it if your child really enjoys making you tea later on. 🙂 Rest assured, you will get your tea right in your bed!

Stay cool and have fun!

The Ketchup Girl

The Gift of Green

Its all about conditioning. You are what you are because of the the conditioning at home- to  a large extent. A lot of what you were exposed to in your childhood remains with you. Just think of all the good things you were introduced to as a child and as you grew up how these little nothings grew on you and stayed with you, as a habit.

So just imagine the impact children this generation will have on growing up, if you give them the gift of green. Catch them young, and inculcate green habits today, and secure a beautiful world for them. Teach them to love, nurture and appreciate. Here are my top 5 green things to do with your child –

1. Put together a garden kit with a little pot, a small shovel, a few soaked  bean sprouts and soil. Get them to plant the sprouts in the soil. teach them to water every day. And watch with wonder, the amazement in their eyes when they see the sprouts sprout!

2. Give a weekly prize for saving paper.

3. Encourage them to use a slate for practicing their alphabets.

4. Teach them not to waste. Not with a scolding, with a story may be? (Remember, your mom scolded you for wasting, but it had little impact on you 🙂 )

5. Recycle your toys – donate them, pass them over to friend’s kids, exchange toys your child is bored of with other kids’ toys. Am sure mothers will be more than willing to do this instead of making weekly/fortnightly shopping rounds at toy shops.

5. And last but most certainly not the least, buy them eco-friendly toys.

These are little things, but remember these things will amount to big changes in future.

Stay green!

Contributed by The Ketchup Girl

How important are toys for your child

How many times have you ended up buying the most expensive toys for your little munchkins only to find them more interested in a broken pencil, a steel spoon, a stray piece of paper? Plenty of times, yah?

The fact is that kids play by themselves with whatever objects they find around them. For all you know your toddler finds a little block of red wood, the most fascinating thing he has ever encountered, or your fingers for that matter. Wiggle them a little and watch your wee baby’s eyes widen and face break into the happiest chuckle.

Toys are mere facilitators. Doesn’t mean they have no role and are a waste of money. Heh, not at all. On the contrary, what I am driving at is the importance of child initiated play and the role toys have in it. Observe your little one and you’ll see them invent a whole lot of games by themselves. When they do that you should  introduce toys to aid the process. Toys can be great stimulators and help in enhancing your child’s all round development – motor skills, cognitive skills etc. To give you a quick example- remember how your kid dragged that pillow all over the house? May be if you introduced toys like  a train with a string/ a dog with a leash/a wooden horse/a cart etc, it will have the intended effect on your child’s mind. What you did only just furthered your child’s creativity. My girl, cuts her toy cake once, everyday. I gave her that one, when she turned two and had just enjoyed cutting her second birthday cake. With that toy cake, its a little unimaginable the kind of stuff she churns out- birthday parties, tea parties, quick snack for her ‘hungry baby’ and a few days back, she had me buy it from her ‘bakery’.

Having said that, please bear in mind, to introduce age appropriate toys and more importantly not to over stimulate them. There is not point in dumping toys of all shapes and sizes and giving them little room to discover each toy at a time.

We know you love your kid and want to give the world and nothing less. But may be you should re-consider your strategy of buying the entire store at a go! Like clothes, children out grow toys too. And when you introduce too many toys at a time, it might just result in the opposite- instead of engaging them, your child might just get plain bored, or as it happens often, stick to one toy leaving behind a mound of toys you affectionately bought for him last evening!

So, it might be a good idea to introduce one/few toys at a time, depending on the stage your child is in. Ensure the toy you are introducing are non-toxic, colourful , age appropriate and stimulating. And like we have harped earlier on this blog- recycle them! Children do not understand the meaning of new/old. Its in our head :).

May be, we can help you?

Contributed by The Ketchup Girl

Recycle your toys …

Did you know that more than 40 million toys were thrown away last year?

And of that 40 million, 13 million toys ended up in the dustbin?

The numbers are quite incredible aren’t they? I was pretty shocked when I read them especially since I am in the toy rental space! I now realize that I have to do something about this because if toy buyers aren’t recycling their children’s toys then I can’t sell toys/Rentoys with a clear conscience.

And so this initiative was born!

So How do I Recycle toys?

When our children receive ‘new’ toys they are a source of endless fun and amusement. They’re faces light up at the prospect of something new to play with. Children don’t really care whether they’re brand new or not, they’re new to them and that’s all that matters to them.

When your child outgrows his or her toys they can then be turned into ‘new’ toys for other children who will again see them as a source of endless fun.

Instead of throwing away unbroken toys you can donate them to a good cause. You can also get your children involved by asking them to sort out what toys they don’t play with. Then come to a decision together about donating the toys. This can create the perfect chance for discussion on the environment and recycling as well as helping good causes.

Here’s what you can do – has tied up with an NGO which is a non-profit organization that has been set up with the aim of providing toys to all children.

Our aim in this is –

• To ensure that children from under privileged backgrounds receive toys as well

• To sensitize and advocate amongst individuals from all sections of society the need and importance of the right to play and the right to leisure for all children.

Send me an email at and we will have the toys collected from your home for this cause!

%d bloggers like this: