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Everyone Loves Children's Wooden Toys

By Tim Hyers

For many years children have enjoyed playing with wooden toys. Long before video games, and other modern toys, that rely on batteries and cords that plug into the wall were invented, the old-fashioned, traditional wooden toys have amused and entertained children of all ages. Even though wooden toys were first invented in the early 19th century, these types of toys can be seen in many households today.

Surprisingly enough, children do not seem to be the only ones interested in these toys anymore. An increasing number of adults have been buying wooden toys for themselves. I recall the day I visited a friend at his home, and I was surprised to see on his coffee table a wooden hamburger. The hamburger actually had the buns, lettuce, cheese, tomato, mayonnaise, and the patty. I thought this was pretty cool!

Naturally, I told him that was a cute little toy he bought for his child. He said that even though his child likes to play with the toy, he bought it for himself. He explained to me that he simply bought the toy as a decorative item for his home and that he normally receives many comments similar to mine about the toy. He chuckled as he told me that most adults like to play with the toy.

Also, I have a friend who owns a boutique. One day I went to visit her, and I was surprised to see a wooden rocking horse in her place of business. I became very curious, so I asked her why she had this rocking horse at work, and she replied that her child loved the one at home so much that she wanted to buy an extra one for her shop. She said that she occasionally brings her child to work, and that the toy will keep him busy while she takes care of the customers. Also, she told me her customers' children like to play on the horse. Despite these other reasons, she said the main reason she bought the horse is it's a nice conversation piece that looks good in her shop."

Yet another example comes to mind: I have a relative who is a cosmetologist. Many times during her day on the job, she must reach for supplies in an overhead supply cupboard. She is not tall enough to reach the supplies, so she came up with an idea: She had bought a small, wooden step-stool several years earlier for her child to use at home. Since her child had started to outgrow the step-stool, she simply took the item with her to work, and she was able to use it to step on to reach her supplies. If you think about practical uses for children's toys, that definitely is one!

Speaking of practical uses for children's step-stools, I recall from my childhood days that several times a year my family and I would take the train to visit relatives. As we boarded and deboarded the train, we stepped on a wooden step-stool that was very sturdy. No matter how many people stepped on the stool, it would not break. I remembered this fact, and later in life, I bought a similar step-stool for my child. I know that if he ever gets tired of it, I can probably think of some practical uses for the item around the home.

Maybe these wooden toys bring back the kid in us, or maybe they just remind us of great memories. Whatever the case, don't be surprised if you see an increase in adults purchasing these types of toys for themselves.


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