Our little Mori’s 2nd birthday is fast approaching and I send this message to all of our well-meaning friends and family, who wish to give presents to our bambina…
It is about time we address this concern of ours and we are really firm on saying this:
We love accepting all of your gifts for Mori. BUT ENOUGH TO PLASTIC AND/OR BATTERY OPERATED TOYS (AND HIGH END CLOTHES).
We have been very transparent with how we intend to raise Mori. We choose toys made of natural materials for her to play with, especially since she doesn’t need a lot anyway. We don’t allow her to have screen time and yet we still received expensive V-techs last year and tons of plastic toys.
I’ll be very frank, we never allowed Mori to play with these things. We either donate them or give them away.
I know that you mean well and that it is truly a joy to see Mori’s face light up when she opens a carefully-wrapped present that is meant for her to have. So I made a list of the things Mori (and our family) would truly appreciate, especially since we already started our Pre-school Homeschool just recently, July 1 to be exact.
The items listed are practically useful for Mori’s holistic play and learning. Other than the fact that these toys/crafts are with made great-quality materials, some of them, if not, most of them are really cheap. Thus, preventing Mori’s Ninongs and Ninangs from breaking their savings!
ARTS and CRAFTS
1.) 100% Natural Wool Felt
Price: P75 each.
Available at: Syd and Phoen Online Store
This will help make Mori’s peg dolls from Seed Studio Toys even more beautiful! Storytelling has been an essential part of Mori’s life since birth. She looks forward to it everyday. Its her daily dose of information with every story she hears. I use different peg dolls as characters in every story. Any color from the choices available at Syd and Phoen would be great!
2.) 100% Wool Yarn
Price Range: P300-P600
Available at: Dreams Yarnshoppe at Glorietta 5. Other stores that sells yarn doesn’t have 100% Wool Yarn or is a blend of wool with a synthetic fiber.
Mori spends so much time removing the sleepwear of her baby doll and putting them back on over and over again. The thing is, her doll only has one pair of clothing. Having wool in hand will allow me to crochet more clothes for her doll to wear. I think Mori would really like that.
TOYS AND GAMES
4.) Debresk Wooden Doll Bed, Doll Chair and Doll Table.
Available at: Doll Bed, Doll Chair, Doll Table.
Price Range: Set of 3 is worth P794
Alwyn and I bought Mori a very small doll during our last trip to Tokyo. It is smaller than my hand but I haven’t given it to her yet because I was hoping to present it to her with a wooden doll house but the ones I see online are pretty expensive and is out of our budget. If Mori would receive this set as a gift, I’ll be painting a shoebox to make it look like a miniature bedroom for her little dolly.
5.) Mother’s Corn Bubbles
If you were to ask me what item Mori values most in our home, it will be this bottle of bubbles. Mori finds it very special because unlike regular bubbles available in the market, this bubble takes awhile to pop and she can stack them together with her hands.
6.) Any from the Ostheimer Fairytale Figures
Price Range: $13-$40
A suggestion to our family and friends from the United States. I think this is more of what I want for Mori rather than what Mori wants for herself. Hehehe! Storytelling has been a part of our lives ever since Mori was born. We use peg dolls during story time (which happens everyday) but I really think it will be such a feast for her eyes too see such beautiful figures moving about while I tell her a story.
If you are planning to pick a book for Mori, there are a lot of books that will help us enrich our Homeschooling Journey together. Not just during her pre-school years but its content will still be useful for years to come.
All books listed below are available at an online store called Syd and Phoen. I tried looking for them in Fully Booked and other major bookstores but they don’t carry them.
(I included direct links to make it easy for you to find them.)
7.) The Individuality of Colour – P1,800
8.) Authentic Parenting – P650
9..) Our Twelve Senses – P1,050
10.) The Children’s Year – P1,050
11.) Making Flower Children – P700
12.) Toymaking with Children
We are not requiring our family and friends to buy these things for Mori. We just want to avoid unnecessary spendings that comes from our loved ones. It also breaks our hearts every time we receive presents for her, only to realize that we need to store them in a box and preserve them as gifts for other kids.
I’m pretty sure all of us parents want to be practical, especially when buying gifts. That’s why I included stuff like the wool felt which will only cost each godfather or godmother Php75.00! You don’t have to give Mori anything expensive really. She enjoys playing with sticks and stones just the same as any child who loves playing with legos.
With that being said, I’d like you to know that we also consider the remaining 5 things to be valuable gifts… Way more valuable than the 12 things listed above:
1.) It would be nice for you to have real conversations with my two-year-old. Yes, she can handle it. No need for you to baby talk or limit your conversations to a few words because you feel that she won’t understand if it would be an entire sentence or a paragraph. Instead of asking hungry, food, meme, play? You can just tell her, “Mori if you are hungry just let me know, I’ll be right here on the sofa or we’ve been playing tea party for quite awhile now. Do you want us to check on Neneng (her doll) to see if she wet her nappy? How about we play with bubbles outside? The weather is good“.
She’ll understand and really appreciates this little gestures. You can even tell her a story or simply tell her how your day went. When you leave our house, she’ll recall what you said and she’ll excitedly share it to me and her Tatay.
P.S. We’d love the company of family and friends over on a Monday at around 4 in the afternoon until 8 in the evening.
2.) Don’t call her dugyot or exaggeratedly say yuck! in the event that you see her dirty which is 99% of the time. My daughter is always playing outside. We allow her to roll in the mud, use it as clay, play lots of games that involves running so it is really not a big deal if she comes home all sweaty. There was this one night wherein she wouldn’t stop crying unless I make her wear a particular “dress” with flowers. She doesn’t want to sleep in her pajamas. She was pleading and saying: “Please Nanay, dress. Gusto ni Mori pretty. Please Nanay!” I recalled what happened during the day and I remember one of our neighbor telling Mori, “Yuuuck! Si Mori dungis dungis! Ligo ka na then wear a dress para pretty!” Right after bathing, I grabbed anything that my hand laid on on her dresser and lo and behold, before leaving the house our neighbor still stood at the exact location where I last saw her but this time around, she kept gushing about how beautiful Mori is. “Ang cute cute mo talaga Mori! So beautiful! Dapat lagi ka naka dress.” I remember Mori’s face lighting up. She was so happy. It was only during night time, when she started asking me to make her wear a dress that I realized that my daughter has a tendency to be a people pleaser. We all want to be loved and appreciated. Please be sensitive in your choice of words especially when you are directly talk to my daughter. Because of this incident, everyday, no matter what her physical state is I tell her that, “Anak, you are so beautiful. Mahal kita.”
3.) WITH ALL CAPS: DO NOT make her watch cartoons, animation films or any form of entertainment available in local tv, Youtube, etc. PLEASE! And teaching my child that it will be “your secret and hers” just makes everything worse because you are unconsciously teaching my child that it is okay to lie. Believe me, we’d know it eventually. She’ll get my phone and beg for Beauty and The Beast, Moana or Peppa Pig all day. Since I won’t give in, she’ll get desperate and end up calling the name of the person who made her watch the shows I’ve mentioned above.
4.) For the love of God, enough with the UNNECESSARY matchmaking.
Worldly comments like:
“[insert name of your son] diba Mori is your girlfriend?”
“Uuuyyy! Si [insert name of your son], kinikilig!”
are not welcome. They are not even flattering.
What makes it worse, is when a child is instructed to kiss Mori. I’d like to explain why but I’ll just reserve that to a different post because it is going to be a long one.
The simplest explanation could be: IT IS PLAIN UNNECESSARY.
5.) Don’t react negatively when you see my daughter with a scratch or a bruise. “Ayan ang kulit kulit mo kasi! Takbo ka ng takbo, akyat ng akayat. Ayan! Nalaglag ka tuloy!” Saying these words to my child is not helping her in any way. The reason why she is running like crazy, climbing the stairs a million times, taking our clothes outside the dresser then placing them back over and over is because that’s what children do. It is not normal for a child to sit for long periods of time. You can just take her hand and bring her to an area where you can clean her wound. If she still wants to climb the stairs and the very thought scares you, she’ll value the experience more if you’d climb it with her.
Its been two beautiful years since we had Mori and there is a lot more that we need to learn as parents but I hope this blog entry gave you an idea on what can be a good addition to your toddler’s birthday registry if any.