Last week was the building week. Actually, M's been building lots and lots of stuff lately. Up in his room we set up a little Thomas the Train railroad (actually, it's a much cheaper Imaginarium set, but it works just as well). You can't really see any of the tracks though 'cause M built lots of tunnels out of all the suitable building blocks. He then used the unsuitable ones (too small) to build a sprawling settlement along the still-exposed tracks. He even started building with the Lincoln Logs. By his own admission, the result was "a very strange house, Mama".
Thus having run out of blocks, he now goes to Marbles, the kids museum, to build there. Fortunately, folks there are prepared. Here he is, building out of Tinkertoys pieces. It's funny that I thought about getting him Tinkertoys a couple of months ago, but he didn't show any interest in the ones at Marbles. So instead I got him a beginner set of Gears! (BTW, it's not me shouting, it's the toy's actual name - Gears! Gears!) And of course, right now he doesn't even ask for Gears, but instead is totally into Tinkertoys.
Then there are giant LEGO-like blocks on the 2nd floor of the Museum. Which is a dangerous area 'cause it is right next to the pizzeria playspace, the ball pit and the various conveyors, air cannons, tubes and rails that are used by kids to get all the balls into this big pink pig that hangs over the ball pit. You see, once the pig "eats" enough balls, the trap door opens and the balls fall down into the pit and kiddos love it. And all this fun envelopes a large play structure with a big twisty slide. They might as well put a sign at the entrance "Forget all hope of getting out of here quickly, ye parents".
I got side-tracked again... Sorry... ok, giant interlocking blocks... these are super cool and there are lots and lots of them so it is possible to build large structures, including houses, boats, big walls. Maybe even a maze. That would be a really neat thing, come to think of it. These blocks are also fun to crush since they come down with a horrific noise that M and his buddies L-O-V-E.
Back on the first floor, next to the play kitchen, there's a small tucked-in area with two shelves full of good old unit blocks. These are nice and heavy too and provide a good workout for M and lots of feedback to his muscles. Just this past week he's built two houses with them. The first house was a castle for a piglet. The second one was a 5-story tower that housed two piglets, two chickens and all their eggs. The eggs were put on the top-most floor so that "they wouldn't run away". M pays particular attention to decorating these structures, as you can probably tell.