It’s a real saw, Dada!

Every Christmas, and every birthday, Mr. C ends up receiving at least one gift that is entirely inappropriate. It’s usually something that’s just not right for his age. It can be a toy that is intended for a much younger kid, but usually it’s a toy that’s really for a much older kid. Toys will usually have an age range listed on the box, something like “For Ages 4 and Up”. Since a lot of our relatives like to think that Mr. C is a super genius, they will buy something that will say it’s for a much older kid, like “For ages 6 and up”.

I don’t mean to sound ungrateful, I just feel bad when I see him open up a gift that I know he’s not going to be able to really use yet.

The most notorious gift was the 3 foot long, remote control, Bradley Fighting Vehicle which Mr. C was given for Christmas two years ago by my brother in law. That was just his second Christmas, he was 18 months old, and had just started to walk. For anyone who does not know, the Bradley Fighting Vehicle is a small Army tank. I’m not sure what he was thinking, maybe something like: ‘You just started to walk ? Now’s a good time to learn about defending your country!’ I have nothing against the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, but at 18 months, we thought he might end up running over one of our cats with that tank. It’s been sitting in our basement for the past two years.

This year he received a few board games for Christmas.  Maybe it’s just me, but I do find it difficult to explain the rules of a board game to Mr. C.  Such as the ‘Busytown Airport’ board game, with it’s hundreds of very tiny pieces and complicated rules. I think that was marked as ‘For Ages 5+”.   Turned out that I didn’t even really understand the rules myself, much less have the ability to explain them to my 3 year old. On Christmas morning, Ms. J took over for me when I gave up trying to understand what we were supposed to do with that game. I’ve never been much of a competitive board game player anyway. So while J was explaining the rules, Mr. C was perfectly happy to fly the airplane shaped game pieces around the room. ‘He’s taking after you’, J said as he crashed one airplane after another into the furniture, oblivious to the correct procedure of game play.

That one really wasn’t so bad.  I’m sure we’ll be playing it in a few months.  The award for the most inappropriate gift this year would have to go to this tool set.


It’s really an awesome tool set. It has a saw, a hammer, two screw drivers, a ruler, and a pencil. The problem is those are all real tools, small versions of them, but entirely functional tools. That’s a real metal saw, with sharp teeth. A hammer with a metal head. Two metal screwdrivers, both pretty sharp.

Who gave him this box of weapons ? That would be me.

I’m not sure what I was thinking. I must have been caught up in all the other Christmas spending. A beautiful wooden box, filled with tools! And they really work too! This looks nice, sure, let’s buy that too!  I was sure that he would love it.  Problem is that he does love it.  He wanted to saw anything made out of wood in the house.  Since we were over my in-law’s  house, which is filled with antique furniture, I spent most of Christmas day following him around making sure he didn’t turn the hundred year old chairs into sawdust.

It’s a real saw, Dada!

Yes, I know.  I said, chasing after him as he headed for the dining room set.

I then had the bright idea of giving him some card board to saw.  At least it would distract him from the search for wood, I thought.  Here’s a close up of him sawing a piece.



‘Yikes!’  I thought as I put aside the camera.   Ok, that’s a little too close to the fingers there Mr. C.  That was the end of that, at least for now.

Oh well, the tool set is now in our basement, next to the Bradley Fighting Vehicle.





It’s a real saw, Dada! — 6 Comments

  1. Peter, I laughed out loud reading your post! I remember buying Christmas and birthday presents for my daughter when she was younger. It was a nightmare! And now, as then, I still don’t buy her clothes. Being a girl, she wasn’t as hard to buy toys for as boys are. She did prefer cars and trucks and tools, most of the time. But she did like dolls and games, too – after she got older. Enjoy every moment you have with Mr. C. Tomorrow is never promised and they grow up so amazingly fast.

  2. Great post! I have trouble with those age limits when buying for my nephews. One just turned 2. Most of the good toys are for 3+. Anything appropriate for a 2 year old seemed uninteresting and too young for him. I ended up with washable markers (even though those said 3+ because of the caps, I think), which he proceeded to use right away. Funny though, I got my 10 month old nephew a “talking” toy with flashing lights and I saw the 2-year carrying it around…I guess I’m just clueless!

    • It’s hard at the 2 – 3 year age since the toy makers have to be concerned with safety.

      A 2 year old and a 10 month old! I thought I was busy, I don’t know how parents with more than 1 can do it!

  3. Oh my gosh, that’s HILARIOUS!!! Yes, what were you thinking? Some adults can’t even be trusted with real tools. :-)
    I want to know what your wife said when she saw your son sawing that cardboard!

    Board games for littles ones are cool. It teaches them to take turns and lose (they hate that). Start with Candyland, and graduate to Chutes & Ladders. Dominoes are cool when your son is a little older (my four and a 1/2 loves dominoes and is great at the game). Board games are fun to play with kids, you’ll see. Just don’t buy Trivial Pursuit yet.

    • She came across the tool set on a website, and I said sure! I guess we thought he and I would use it only outside once Spring is here. But of course he’s not about to wait that long.
      We’re playing Chutes and Ladders without any problems, I should try dominoes too!