The Trouble with Legos

Although primarily a place to discuss my parenting experiences, we are not afraid to tackle the bigger issues here at Thirsty Daddy. I’ve written about Facebook Anxiety Disorder, racism , and even discussed the Syrian refugee crisis before it had entered the national consciousness. I like to think that from time to time I’ve educated as well as entertained.

But there are some things that I will admit confuse me. Things that I have a hard time figuring out the purpose to.

I don’t understand what you are supposed to do with Legos.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand the premise. You take several thousand small pieces of plastic and over a several hour period use them to construct a toy of some sort. They teach patience, fine motor skills, and direction following. It’s a great project for parents and children to work on together, leading to an eventual nice sense of accomplishment.

What I don’t understand is what they expect you to do next.

One of my daughter’s Christmas presents this year was a very nice Littlest Pet Shop hair salon Lego set. Both her mother and sister worked very hard, for a significant amount of time, assembling it, and despite Alaina’s best efforts at helping the end result was a very cute little Lego building, complete with cute little Lego animals as customers.

One that was completely impossible to play with.

It was impossible to play with so after several days of nonstop aggravation and repeated building renovations she took the whole thing apart, much to the frustration of the original builder, but not the repairman. It was taken apart and the pieces added to the tub of mismatched bricks and blocks that had been handed down to her.

I’ll freely admit that I am completely incapable of putting together anything more complicated than a sandwich. Cribs, entertainment centers and such are left to my wife. My job is to stay out of the way and move heavy stuff if it becomes necessary.

Even with this construction ineptitude, when I was a kid I enjoyed putting together model planes and cars, sometimes with my father’s help. I probably used more glue than was called for, but at the end I had something that I was proud of. Something that went on display on a shelf in my room. When she is older I look forward to doing the same with her.

I think we are going to stick to the basics from now on around here. If we want something to play with, we will buy it fully assembled. If we want to dump a bunch of random plastic pieces on the floor and see what we come up with, well, that sounds like a lot more fun to me.






31 thoughts on “The Trouble with Legos”

  1. It depends on the set. The Lego Creator pet shop is meant more as a model and not so much for play. The sets meant for play have open backs and such to allow more play.

    For example, the Lego Friends (I know) pet shop looks a lot more playable. We got a Lego Juniors grocery store that my kids play with a ton.

    We got two Ninjago castles for Christmas and my son has been playing in and around them with minifigs every day since.

  2. Hi Jeremy, we had tons of Lego when I was a child and I remember spending hours with my sister building things (and fighting over the small bits and roof tiles), only to sit wondering what to do with our ‘works of art’ once they had been constructed. We didn’t have the room to keep them up, so of course they were dismantled and the Lego bits slung back into there tins.

    These days Lego sets are far more fancy, but what’s the point in a Littlest Pet Shop Hair Salon that can’t be played with? Not really sure.


    1. I can see where its fun to put stuff together, I’m just going to make sure its something that can be played with after next time

  3. My boys get Lego sets and put them together. They then put them on display – like you used to do.
    They rarely play with them.
    They rush to put them together and then the joy is over. I don’t quite get it either.

  4. Hehe, I always remember getting so frustrated with lego. I had a tub of stickle bricks which I preferred because it had big wheels you could stick on anything you built. Apparently everything is better when it rolls… 🙂 #thetruthabout

  5. The Tubblet has lots of Lego as does Rev T. They love it! Rev T keeps his sets complete whilst the Tubblet destroys them afterwards to create something new. (I’ll have to do a tour of Rev T’s Star Wars Lego sometime)

  6. Oh my god I couldn’t agree more! We have had random Lego stuff over the past couple of years (in fact for JJ’s fifth birthday I think half of his party guests gave him some form of Lego essentially because it is labelled aged 5 and up I guess). We’ve (see: I’ve) built planes, cars and a fire engine all of which definitely gave that sense of satisfaction at the time – but they lasted like two minutes before they started falling apart and once the intricate little bits come off you know that you will either lose them completely or just never have any idea where they are supposed to fit back on. When I was a kid it was much more laissez faire – a bunch of blocks, a few wheels, flat bits, a window, a door, and all you had to do was use your imagination to create something – none of these 17-step instructions – ridiculous!! Thanks for linking up to #thetruthabout this week 🙂

  7. My son’s much the same. We’ll make up things, then he’ll adapt them (half break bits off) and add to them, then he’ll wander round with them in a little box he has or play with them. Mostly we just end up mixing everything together. which totally goes against my brother’s old lego that he gave N – 9 x beautifully colour coded lego filled ice cream boxes…surprisingly these are still largely in their colour way and haven’t been mixed unlike N’s own sets!


    1. are you sure your brother didn’t secretly glue them together? I hear that is what a lot of people do if they spend a lot of time on a set and don’t want their kids to wreck them. Proving that many of these sets are really more for the adults

  8. My son loves legos and always wants me to build these amazing things and sadly Daddy is just as bad as mommy at building these type of things hahaha I can relate to lego troubles. Thanks for the continual support of my linky and blog as it gets quieter and quieter I am hoping to turn it around and save SWM. #sharewithme

  9. Ah maybe this was what my OH was thinking when he mixed our daughter’s various lego sets into one box and said it didn’t matter! I was annoyed as we now have virtually no chance of finding the right bits & working out how to build the various sets it was supposed to be. But I never played with lego much – maybe he knows that you can’t do much with a properly constructed lego piece & they may as well just mess around building & demolishing stuff. Which they seem happy doing! #picknmix

  10. We are in the same boat, and are only at the Duplo level! Trouble is, you buy a container with instructions, build it the first time, then the instructions rip or pieces go missing and you will never know how to build it properly again. My daughter doesn’t build much out of them anymore so it’s much taking up wasted space!

  11. I totally get this. The boys love lego and building it, but then it either sits there not played with or gets played with, broken, parts lost and eventually added to the massive collection. They do like inventing their own things too. Thanks for linking to #PickNMix

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