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April 28, 2012

Mama Loves: Trains!

Our girls had their first train experience...a miniature choo-choo through a state park close to Granddaddy and Emme's Labor Day.  Of all the things we did on that trip to Alabama, all the people we saw and food we ate, that was what they consistently talked about.

Coupled with their love of several train stories we had, and their delight at the sight of the train running through downtown, I decided to get them a train set for Christmas.

I researched and thought and shopped and debated, and I finally settled on a wooden train set, but without the train table.

I am so happy we went that route!

Our girls play with their train set probably four or five days a week.  When it's not in play, all the train pieces fit in three plastic bins on our storage shelf.  A big part of their fun is constructing new track two are ever the same! 

I love the problem-solving that's involved in the track set-up...making a loop to go under the bridge...figuring out what lengths and shapes of track are necessary to go around the depot.  Usually, B will work on a track heading in one direction, and A goes in another.  Then the trick is to make those tracks work together (which is often where Mommy comes in).

Not having the train table allows the girls to build a really big configuration.  I've found that works really well for them to both play, can sit "inside" a loop and drive her trains, and the other can work from the outside of the pattern.

Once the track is satisfactorily up and running, the girls sometimes like to set up scenes alongside the railroad.  They might pull out their barn so the farm animals can wave to the train.  :)  Or sometimes we'll make a tunnel from blocks from the train to go through.

The train set has been a great investment (along with a small expansion set we got a few weeks ago).  The play patterns are endless, and I can see it growing with them for a long time.  Oh, and Mommy and Daddy enjoy it about as much as the girlies!

I'm linking up again today with Julia at Pontifications of a Twin Mom, for "Mama Loves".  It doesn't always work this way, but I love having invested in great, classic toys that our girls love, too!


Johanna Baker said...

Mine love trains too. Their favorite pieces of track are from an imaginarium 'girly' set we received as a present. It has a little ice cream shop and pink bridge that my girly girl LOVES. :)

Mandy said...

I'm in love with our train set too! Slightly disappointed that it ended up being plastic, and not the wood I requested, but they love it just the same. The girls have been big train affectionados for the last two years. This summer we're going to see Thomas, I'm sure they'll flip their lids!

Beth said...

We love our trains!

You probably made the right decision going without the table. We have a train table which is a great place to store the track pieces and trains, but it is too small for most of the kids' tracks. Right now we have the drawers full of train parts, the top covered with Weebles and Weeble houses and (most days) an elaborate train track running around the entire table on the floor!

I love the wood too. The are so nice and hold up forever. We'll be using these same pieces until we hand them down to someone else!

Julia said...

Thank you so much for writing about your trains!

You know, I was just going to email you about what train set you'd gotten your girls.

My girls have suddenly shown a big interest in trains, I went to our local toy store to check out the different brands, etc. SO overwhelming.

The sales girls told me that, "It really depends on whether your girls watch 'Thomas' or 'Chuggington'. So then I explained that our girls didn't watch either, but they just enjoyed playing with trains. She gave me a funny look. Ha! Is it possible that kids could just enjoy playing with something without having to associate it with a character on TV?? Good grief!

Barbara Manatee said...

HOW CUTE! You know my boys love their trains and while Sarah isn't as into it as the boys are, she does like to help them build the track and play with some of the trains when the mood strikes her. I appreciate that she likes the 'boy' stuff with her brothers still and that the boys will play with her 'girl' stuff, too! Equality! ha!