Making Peace with the Plastic

This is the view of my backyard from my sons’ bedroom.  It is not lost on me that short of being outside in the yard, the best view of it is from my two youngest sons’ bedroom.  This yard has been an oasis for me (mainly in its creation since most gardeners seldom sit long enough to enjoy it).  I love watching the rain nourish it.  I love walking in it early on a summer morning listening to the proverbial sound of silence.  I love inviting my friends and family to celebrate milestones in it.

And though I love watching my children play in it, I would be lying if I said that I love the plastic.

On those rare occasions when the weeds temporarily escape my notice and I am sitting, I look at the plastic toys–and there are plenty of them–and think about what the yard will look like when they’re gone.  A bench here, maybe a fountain there.  I dream and design in my head and try to figure out where I could possibly fit a small greenhouse.

But then I stop.

I remind myself that for the first seven years we lived in this house, there was no plastic–just two people who longed to be parents.  The yard was lush; the yard was free of Green Lantern action figures and Clone Wars balls and anything from Little Tikes.

Then I do some very quick math and realize with a vengeance that the toys will be gone seemingly almost as quickly as they came.  My sons will no longer want to play in a sandbox, on a scooter, or in a $39 pool from Walmart.  I’ll have the yard back–and the bench and the fountain and, yes, the greenhouse.  Ten years from now there won’t be any plastic–just the memories of three boys who happily played in this space–among the trees, between the flower pots, and with their toys.

As long as they want them, their toys will stay.  Something tells me, though, that I might want them a whole lot longer than they will.


6 thoughts on “Making Peace with the Plastic

  1. Children may beget children; the friends of your children may visit with children, and a few chosen pieces of plastic that entertain and are symbolic of the land (A la recherche du temps perdu), retain the squeals and glee amidst the containers of color.

    • Don’t throw any of the toys away because one day there will be young children there again , smarter, cuter and loved more than the little boys there now. They are known as grandchildren. I never thought there would be any children smarter, cuter and more loved than my children, but there are (so it seems). The noise of grandchildren laughing and playing are the “sound of silence,”

  2. The plastic tidal wave is receding from our house, slowly but surely. Ours was centered in the living room and dining room, so I am happier about its demise. But if you check out the playroom, you can see, I am in no rush to part with the last bits….

  3. I am already beginning to collect non-plastic items for my future family to avoid the sea of Playskool®. It definitely will be a bit more a financial investment, which is why I am starting earlier.

    Good luck reclaiming your garden. Be sure to donate/sell your plastic toys rather than discarding!

    Green energy.


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