The boys are incredibly lucky with hand-me-down toys, with everything from mine and Mr. C’s Duplo and wooden train sets to my Dad’s old farm sets and original Tonka trucks from the 70’s. The boys are still quite young though, meaning a lot of the hand-me-down toys still in storage, but Mr. C’s old Brio sets have already been brought down from the attic and cleaned up. Without a doubt, the wooden train sets are the most played with toys in the house, with different tracks being built across my living room floor every day.
I think a lot of adults lose their creative imaginations as they grow up, but children find the most wonderful way to play with their toys. The boys play with their wooden train set alongside so many different toys, it’s amazing to watch them creating scenes and stories.
We recently bought a Thomas book that has a picture of Cranky in it lowering some materials onto one of the engine’s flatbed. After reading the book, the boys began recreating the scene with their Brio set. Monkey was ‘loading’ up the flatbed using a magnetic toy we bought from Ikea, which Bear then pushed around the track so the trains could ‘make deliveries’. It was fascinating to watch.
If you are a regular follower of my social media, you will know that as well as being completely train mad, the boys LOVE Paw Patrol. My Nan always buys the boys one of the Paw Patrol vehicles for their birthdays, so they have a good collection going. There is an episode of Paw Patrol where a bridge is damaged by a rockslide as a train is crossing. The pups then have to work together to save the day. Naturally (considering both of them are complete train fanatics) this is their favourite episode. So the other day I set up a rock slide play scene so that the boys could re-enact it. They were in their element pushing paper rocks down my makeshift hill as a train was crossing the bridge and then getting the pups to save the day.
We also create really elaborate tracks with animal figures dotted around. Bear loves pretending that it is a safari park, which passengers can visit by train. We have different stops for passengers to get on and off the train and see the animals in different areas. We even had a miniature Jurassic Park the other day, which Bear told me was really scary for people to visit. It’s just amazing watching the boys’ little imaginations develop.
Wooden train sets are the sort of toy you can build and add to over time, but if you’re looking for a first set then take a look at Brio’s Classic Figure 8 set. The set comes with a wooden train, two carriages, a bridge, station and three wooden trees. It’s such a beautiful, well made, little set and could be the start of your very own Brio collection that you could be passed down for generations to come.
The Brio Figure 8 set retails for £37.99 and is for ages 2+.
*Note: We were sent the Brio Figure 8 set in return for an honest review
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