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Your LEGO collection and your kids

 
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Goose



Joined: 15 Feb 2005
Location: CT, ZA

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 6:32 am    Post subject: Your LEGO collection and your kids Reply with quote

Question:

You have this large lego collection, you have kids, or kids are on the way (39 weeks incubation and counting so I don't have a problem yet). How do you manage your collection and their growing collection? Do you let them build from your collection (teeth marks and dirty fingures)? Keep it under lock and key, electified fencing and water cannons? (mmm, electricity, water... that amounts to child abuse, hey? Wink ) Or are there some genius solutions to this potental sticky situation?

Goose Cool
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ApophisV



Joined: 12 Feb 2005
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hm, I'm far, far away from having kids (I haven't even a girlfriend... Razz ) but nonetheless I already thought about this situation....

There will be two choices for me:

a) I will let my kids play with my "standard" collection, but playing with my Star Wars sets will always be a big NO-NO! (Hm, maybe swooshing the models around will be allowed, but a) only while I have a look at them, b) only with clean hands and c) when they are grown up a bit)

b) What I consider a problem is the fact that my collection is completely sorted (except the SW sets which are on display), this might take the fun out of playing for the kids and might force me to sort and sort and sort every day.
So the second way to solve this problem would be to get the kids their own growing box of bricks.
Actually this is what I do with my little brother (he is 3, so 18 years younger than me), he lives 400km away from me and my dad already asked for my Lego collection. Instead of giving away MY (Twisted Evil) Legos I bought some for my brother (argh... Jack... Stone... sets.... Mad) to start with and I will give him Lego at every birthday and christmas.
I think this is how I will manage the situation with kids when there ever will be some (I wonder if my future wife will want more children after already having me Wink)
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Zombie T
Undead!


Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: England

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know what I'll do. Eventually it will all go to my children, but in my will it will state that they may not be sold.

But, hey, 13's a little young for me to be thinking about this, right? Wink
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BrainMattR
Undead!


Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Albany, NY

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a valid concern, but it is possible to deal with. I've got three boys that are 9, 7 and 4 and they're the reason I got back into Lego. I think for someone who wants a pristine collection, they should have separate Legos for the kids. I'm not like that so for the most part, they get to play with or use most everything. We each have sets that belong to us and there are sets and loads of pieces that are up for grabs to be used. (I have a spreadsheet of all the sets and who owns them but that's another story for another day.) You can take your own set apart, or obviously add to it, but you can't disassemble someone else's set to use the pieces. Some of my models are not to be taken apart by the kids but they can play with them. (I don't have any of the UCS sets so don't worry about the Star Destroyer breaking the four-year-old's toe if he drops it. Smile )

Unused pieces are sorted into containers and the smaller pieces are stored on shelves out of reach. This eliminates potential hazards from younger kids and the potential of all the 1x1 or 1x2 plates getting dumped into a pile and unsorted.

The key is to have some rules set that they understand.
Rule 1) No using teeth to take pieces apart. I've got enough brick seperators so that there's always one handy.
Rule 2) No Lego outside the house. It will always get lost.
Rule 3) When you're done with a piece or pieces, put it back in the right container or into my catch-all container (a shoebox) for me to sort back into the right spot.
Rule 4) Don't destroy someone else's model.

I also try to customize sets so they are sturdier and more kid-friendly than an out of the box version. This is a must. I don't go crazy about scratches on pieces and stuff. If you don't let kids play with Lego on their own, they won't like it. Congrats on the baby announcement!
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Faulconbridge



Joined: 04 Feb 2005
Location: A galaxy not so far away.

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My SW LEGO is MINE! Very Happy But I've got a whole Rubbermaid tub full of Space LEGO that my son can play with when he's old enough. And whatever sets I buy for him in the future... There will be some rules for him, though, like only playing with them in an approved location (his room, the family room) and they must be cleaned up when he's done to avoid the dreaded LEGO embedded in the foot condition.
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cedarsith



Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Spanish Fork, Utah

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lots of rambling so be prepared.

I have one child and a Godzilla (a two-year old boy)!

When I first started collecting back in 1999, I wanted a pristine collection but now with kids and the enjoyment of just building I have changed my mind and one by one my sets are cannabalized.

However, here is what I have found. I built a small "LEGO closet" in my basement in which I store all of my LEGO. It works well and it very compact; plus it has a lock.

Now if you don't have a room that you can use or even a closet, you will need to place them up high. Until my son (Godzilla) was about 24 months old there was no reasoning with him. Now at 30 months he chases my around the house with the Jedi Starfighter and me with the Vulture droid. I have worked with him on not putting LEGO bricks in his mouth and not touching. We have never had a mouth problem with a few touching mishaps.

For me, I have found that kids need to be "taught" how to act with LEGO and they will respect it. I also found that the real fun with a LEGO collection is playing with them with your sons.

I have started my son out with two of his own collections. First, the anytime collection, Duplo, Junior etc. Stuff made just for his age. He keeps it in his room (and everywhere else). Then I have a small collection for him that he can only use when I am building too. That way I have my bricks and he has his bricks. He really thinks it is a priviledge to sit with Dad and build with the same type of LEGO bricks he has (At pre-24 months he could tell that Dad's LEGO bricks were different than his Duplo bricks, hence the need for two collections (though small)).

I have also found that by not have a heavy hand or excluding him totally from the collection has alleviated the "dad loves the collection more than me so I am going to get into the room and destroy everything syndrome". I rarily lock my LEGO room door and a few times have found him in the room just looking and gently opening cockpits and looking at the guys. My sons are going to be great builders and I am excited.

Good luck and congratulations on the baby.
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BigDog



Joined: 04 Feb 2005
Location: West of wherever your at.

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My son will soon turn 2. I look forward to building with him, but I've also always been uptight about lossing pieces. When I was young my brothers would go into my room when I wasn't home and destory sets and lose pieces.

So my son will probably have his own sets that he can do whatever with (except for take them outside). Plus, he'll be able to use mine whenever myself or my wife are around and preferable in the same room.

I haven't yet seen how he will handle lego but I have a set built that's been on the kitchen table for a week now. Every now and then my son stops and stares at it so this weekend I'm thinking of sitting down with and seeing what he will do with a bunch of pieces.
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Padawan716
The Comeback Kid


Joined: 04 Feb 2005
Location: not at the o2 arena on dec 10 :(

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2005 7:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I have a kid or two, I'll get them a bit of Duplo to play around with for a little while, then they can upgrade to the regular bricks... but only the 2xX pieces that I don't use often. Or I might just buy them a bucket of pieces. When they're old enough/if they still want to build, I'll let them go into my collection of better pieces... of course, I will buy them sets and stuff to play with that will be just their own. But if they want old greys and browns, they'll have to wait Razz
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Goose



Joined: 15 Feb 2005
Location: CT, ZA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 2:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys.

I suppose it will come to sharing when he gets older. Can't get away from that, if I plan on been a nice guy. Also, thanks for the congrats.

I like the idea of a LEGO closet. It's got me thinking. The space where I keep my boxes of LEGO, would be big enough to build a small cupbord type thing, with shelves and a slid out table. I've got most of my collection sorted into tupperware type tubs, so it would be easy enough to keep everything in arms reach.

Or build a new desk where the computer is, make it wider and a bit longer, add some shelving to it and a few more draws. I think we have something here. My wife could get her long awaited dressing table as well. Smile
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fatespadawan



Joined: 12 Feb 2005
Location: Texas & California

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 5:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't have kids but I do have a nephew who loves Legos. I let him use my loose Legos to build things. He tried to put together one of the X-Wings I got from Wal*Mart on clearance but he gave up.
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Flail



Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Manlius, NY

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 10:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

cedarsith wrote:
I have one child and a Godzilla (a two-year old boy)!


Amen, brother! My son is King Ghidorah! Razz

I was one of those who said my lego is special and will NOT be handled by children. Well, I've mellowed with age. I let my nieces and nephews gradually play with more and more of my LEGO until they can now play with almost anything.

Once my son came along and grew to an age (he's now 6) where he could handle my lego carefully, I suprisingly found myself letting him play with *gasp* even my SW LEGO! He has always been very careful, and loves to swoosh. Actually, he's suprisingly careful with my LEGO, considering he's King Ghidorah with most everything else. I think he's always understood that these are 'daddy's special toys'.

The only problem I run into is his propensity to pull guns of of some ships, like my RGS's, and create his own 'spaceships'; generally a plate, or the Harry Potter mini bus, with various guns on it. This wouldn't be a problem if he'd just take loose bricks from my many parts bins, but he feels compelled to remove them from my models. I must say I find this annoying but, hey, he's just a kid and I love that he loves lego.

One very cool thing, he built his first set the other day; the new City Fire Cheif. He found the parts and put the set together with a little guidence.

It was about the coolest thing I can think of. Very Happy
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Last edited by Flail on Fri Feb 18, 2005 2:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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cedarsith



Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Spanish Fork, Utah

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Flail wrote:

I was one of those who said my lego is special and will NOT be handled by children. Well, I've mellowed with age. I let my nieces and nephews gradually play with more and more of my LEGO until they can now play with almost anything.


It is amazing how with children and time you lose your "intenseness" with keeping your LEGO bricks pristine.

I started to want to play with the bricks more than keep them in a musuem.
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ZombieSeptemris
ZOMGpire!


Joined: 07 Feb 2005
Location: Québec Occupation: making simple minded comments

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 1:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I chime in with Flail, Cedarsith and GrayMattR.

I have two small boys, 3 and 5 year old. And we play with most of the LEGO I have.

I came back into the hobby 3 years ago. The first set I bought was the Tie and Y-wing combo. I immediately started playing with my oldest kid (who was 2 then). We were swooshing the ships and running around the kitchen table.

Nowadays, they are used to having LEGO sets lie all over the place and they know how to treat it. No taking pieces off with teeth or putting in the mouth. If they can't take it apart with their hands or the LEGO separators, they ask for help. They play with the LEGO sharks, squids, dolphins, crocodiles and many more in the bathtub. They have a fascination for the smallest pieces like spiders, jewels, tools, etc. My oldest as been building small spaceships by himself for over a year now. Like Flail's kid, he now knows how to use the instructions, with some guidance.

So what I'm saying is, let the LEGO be played with! Show your kids how to play correctly, and it will stay in really good shape. It also applies to other stuff, like an extensive LOTR figures collection... Worry about the cousins and friends though, they may not know these life priniciples. Razz
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brickfrenzy



Joined: 06 Feb 2005
Location: Westlake, OH

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My son is 9 months old right now, so there's no problem yet, but I have been thinking about it.

My collection is, well, massive. It isn't designed for a kid to build with, and has to be rigorously sorted or I'll never find anything. So my plan is thus:

Until he's old enough to play with daddy's lego (probably past 8 or 9, I'm thinking) he will get his own sets, and his own collection, housed in his own room. That way, when he's all growed up and wants to move, he has a seed collection for his kids, and I don't lose mine.

If he wants to come down to the Lego basement while daddy is building he can. For before he's old enough to handle the full collection, I have been setting aside bricks that date from my old collection. These tend to be dirty or scuffed such that I don't want them in my MOCs, but they're still perfectly useable. He can play with those while I build with the big collection.

I think it'll work, but we shall see. But as I see, I suffer from problems of magnitude that most of you guys never will. That, and I don't keep sets together much, so if you want to play, you're going to have to build.
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Duchessa
The Queen [MOD]


Joined: 03 Feb 2005
Location: The Arctic Circle

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm.. doesn't anyone here have daugters? Shocked

This must be a conspiracy! Cool
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Morbie19
Undead!


Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Duchessa wrote:
Hmm.. doesn't anyone here have daugters? Shocked

This must be a conspiracy! Cool


I'm planning on having on, if that counts. (Though whether we leave it up to luck or, uh, the miracles of tinkering science, remains to be seen.) And she's going to have plenty of LEGO to fool around with, I can guarantee that. Smile

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cedarsith



Joined: 05 Feb 2005
Location: Spanish Fork, Utah

PostPosted: Fri Feb 18, 2005 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Duchessa wrote:
Hmm.. doesn't anyone here have daugters? Shocked


Girls play with LEGO? ::D:
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ZomDarkie
Undead!


Joined: 04 Feb 2005
Location: Witness Protection Program

PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, we do. Wink

No kids of my own yet, but my cousin's kids were just over. He asked for Harry Potter, but he fell in love with my BSB. And I was a hawk.

He was very careful, though. His younger brother was fascinated by the little Spiderman's I had. They used Doc Ock and one of the soliders from the Dragon Fortress as the bad guys, who they killed with "arrow guns." No walking the plank for these guys! They were lowered into the water with the cargo thing. Can't think of the word right now.

They understood that if it was in the big box, then they could play with it. No touchy the things on the table, since it's a work-in-progess.

Nothing like Lego to bring the little boys out of their shells. And Precious. They loved precious.
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