My kids got this Crazy Forts set for Christmas. We got out the instructions…
…but following them felt too much like the pain of putting together IKEA furniture, so we threw the instructions out and just started making free-form sculptures with them, admiring the shadows they cast:
Speaking of IKEA — they should get whoever does the step-by-step instructions for their Mario app to do their furniture assembly instructions:
I kind of hate branded LEGO kits, by the way. Whenever I put them together for my kids, I basically feel like a slightly-less-stressed version of me when assembling IKEA furniture. Raul Gutierrez, of Tiny Bop put it well:
The best toys — Tinkertoys, Lego, Play-Doh, Lincoln Logs — allowed us to build and rebuild almost endlessly. With my kids, I noticed that these kinds of toys have become increasingly rare. Lego bricks are sold primarily as branded kits. Instead of a pile of blocks that could become anything, they are now essentially disassembled toys. Instead of starting with a child’s imagination of what could be, play is now fixed on a single endpoint, predetermined by Lego’s designers.
Because the universe has a sense of humor, the minute I copy/pasted this quote, my son Owen came in to show me this Frankensteined plane he’d made with his brother “out of scraps”:
The kids are alright.
UPDATE 1/6/2021: Jules wanted a toy owl, so I made Coconut The Owl one out of one of his LEGO Super Mario kits: