Um, you say, these don’t really look like toys.
I had friends visit last week. These are the thirteen year old’s toys: he enjoys fixing cell phones and computers and asked if we had any old game platforms. I talked to my son and the thirteen year old is taking the ones he wants. And what was he working on in the picture? Replacing the broken glass in my cell phone.
Now many of you are jealous and would like this teen to visit you. My cell phone has a lot of parts and many tiny screws. There was only one left over and the phone is working fine and the glass is unbroken! Wow! Toys of mine that were used in explorations and repairs included my vacuum and I provided the super glue.
I thanked him with a comic book subscription, since we share an enjoyment and appreciation of comic books.
One of the most useful toys I had growing up was a china doll. Useful you say? Yes. We sewed doll quilts and doll clothes and made our own furniture and hoped for the tiny books in the Cracker Jack boxes. How is this so helpful? Surgeons asked where I had learned my stitching techniques. It was quite delightful to reply, “Doll clothes.” It really did help. I made one old fashioned dress with miles of ruffle, all hemmed by hand. In the 1970s I was embroidering my jeans and adding studs and we dyed t-shirts with melted paraffin and crayons. My sister and I nearly burned down the kitchen once, but we did learn which techniques to use to stop wax fires.
I am not sure who made this dress for the doll. My grandmother Katy Burling sewed doll clothes for us and helped us make patterns and nine patch doll quilts. My other grandmother Evelyn Ottaway could knit the tiniest doll clothes on knitting needles: I still have some of those as well. A tiny stole knit out of a furry yarn and lined with brown satin. My mother was an artist and loved crafts as well but NOT sewing. Pottery yes, sewing no.
My daughter promptly illustrated her lack of the packrat gene by putting half the furniture and stuff away and having a spare and elegant doll house. She learned to sew but does not like it much to date.
What childhood toys and ideas contributed to your adult skills?
For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: toy.