a great craft, a great toy, a great teaching tool

when i first got my sewing machine some 3 months ago, one of the first things i wanted to make was a play mat for lil j.  he is very much into cars (typical boy), so i had in mind a play mat with roads, buildings, etc where he can ‘drive’ all his cars and such.  i googled for inspiration and stumbled upon this super cool tutorial!  

why, i am spared the agony of having to start from scratch!  narelle, the author, has got it all figured out, and sharing the tutorial was a real act of kindness on her part!  thanks so much!

lil j carrying his 'home', deciding whether we should be playing with the mat indoor or out. first thing in the morning, whilst still in his pajamas

centred around lil j's garage (i hand sewn this part), the various roads lead to the library, church, airport, playground, zoo, train station, farm, and the beach. when folded up, all the matchbox cars are stored in the 'garage'

although this turned out to be a non-sewing project, it was still a mission accomplished.  and better still, lil j loves the play mat very much.  we have been playing with it and on it almost everyday!  i introduced farm to lil j on this mat.  we put various farm animals on the ‘farm’ – from animal-shaped pasta, and miniature farm set.  we sang old macdonalds so very often.

lil j is happy playing with the mat while mama cook and do the laundry.

we also visited the playground a fair bit, lil j is currently into slide, he calls it whoosy-whoo.  when we missed our family back home, we visit the airport, and using lil j’s toy aeroplane, we talked about flying home.  and sometimes we dream about a train ride, so thomas the train came to the rescue.

and of late, the weather has been all wet and gloomy.  so, we have been having ‘picnics at the beach’ indoor.  and we read books we borrowed from the library everyday… truly, much more than just a play mat!

and yes, while i am blogging away, he is ‘reading’ (rather, trying to read) just ‘outside’ the library because we just borrowed some books from the library this morning!

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.  And be thankful.  Colossians 3:15

…j