When we moved, we moved within minutes of a HomeGoods. A place where I hadn't really spent much time, since the closest one we had to us was pretty far away and not worth the trek. Anyway, the one we have here is two stories, and the bottom one is a TJ Maxx! It's pretty awesome. Since we went to one (the one that was a trek which is now do-able after our move, but then we moved seconds away from this double-decker HG so we STILL won't go to that one often) and picked up some Calico Critters for Piper, this is THE PLACE to go for her.
We went last weekend, the whole family. The girls and I took the cart downstairs to TJ Maxx to check out the toys while Paul perused the stainless steel pans (his recent obsession as we transition from non-stick to stainless bit by bit). Piper saw no Calico Critters but fixated on some Play-Doh, while Ellie had her sights set on a Melissa and Doug bug bucket. Yeah. A bucket that looks like a bug. Whatever, she has a thing for buckets. We grabbed the Play-Doh (it was a pack of the kind you use for "details", softer and brighter colors), and the bucket and got out of there. When we got home, Ellie and Piper separated the colors, Ellie got a few and Piper got a few. Then Tornado Ellie appeared and mashed all her colors together. Poor orderly Piper nearly had a fit, "MAMA! SHE'S MIXING ALL OF THEM!" Her poor soul was crushed, and I got it. Your fresh new Play-Doh, recently dumped out of the container for the inaugural molding, only to find your little sister threw all caution to the wind and decided to see what happens when you mix four colors together. Chaos ensued. Piper then quickly realized that saying that goes, "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em", and the smushing began.
Quickly, the once vibrant colors of magenta, neon pink, blue and yellow melded with the white and now we have a pile of purplish grey Play-Doh. Literally. Eight containers full of grey Play-Doh. And with this color, the girls have gotten inventive. "Mama! Make an elephant!" I have made many elephants now, with the girls' additions of ... rocks. "Here rock!", Ellie shouts. "MORE ROCK!" Ellie chants. "ELEPHAAAAAAAAAAAAANTS!" are what she wants. Luckily I'm stocked with grey dough, right? So I sit, every day, making elephants. Elephant heads. Tails. Ears. We're coming up with new ways to make elephants. Ears down. Ears out. No ears. Giant tails. Trunk up, trunk down. Elephant on rocks. Elephant on rocks with clouds. Elephant with a big rock. Rock ON elephant.
Maybe next time I'll rethink that idea of letting them have access to ALL the colors of Play-Doh at once.