January 13, 2007

An activity probably not found in our Toddler Busy Book

O's really into playing with tiny objects these days...coins, rubber bands, little pieces of Play-Dough...she likes to take them from one container and move them to another, put them in her pocket, carry them around all day in one hand. She's pretty much beyond the need to put little things like this into her mouth, but we watch her closely nonetheless. Tonight after Marc left for the hospital I thought of all the buttons that I had stashed in two boxes in our laundry room, buttons from every sweater, shirt and pair of pants that I have purchased in the last decade. "I have the perfect jar for them," I thought. Perhaps not.

This jar is gorgeous. I don't remember where I got it, but it's old. It's a glass Ball jar; the lid has a glass insert. I just knew that these buttons were going to be so pretty in the jar, all the colors and shapes. O was going to love it. Duh.

She and I sat down on the living room floor and emptied all the tiny bags of buttons into the jar. She started taking them out and moving them around on the floor and putting them back in...she was having a ball. I suddenly remembered that I had yet more buttons stashed in the kitchen. Now Olivia has never been the type of baby who gets into a lot of things. You can leave her momentarily alone in a room and not expect her to scale the furniture or turn things over. What she does do most of the time when I leave the room is follow me...and that's what she did...with the jar. Smash. I ran back in to find that jar shattered. There was a pile of tiny glass pieces with a nimbus of glass shards around it. Only two big jagged pieces remained to show that it had once been a jar. And Olivia stood in the middle of it all...with one of those pieces in each hand. As quickly as I could, I got to her and snatched them away, the whole time urging her to stay still. I moved her to the side and started trying to clean up. She insisted on helping. She was not at all dissuaded by my proclamation that it was "Dangerous!" I had to get her a fig bar and put her in the booster seat at the table in order to get things back in order safely. All's well that ends well.

Maybe we'll put the buttons in plastic cups tomorrow and play with them that way.



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