Tuesday, October 1, 2013


In every real man
a child is hidden that wants to play.
Friedrich Nietzsche

A few days ago,
i was thinking about my childhood
and how fortunate i was
to have such loving parents
and so many cool toys. :-)

I wanted to share with you
some of the toys i remember most.

i'm guessing some of you
might recognize a few of these. 
The 1970's version of an ipad.
Even then, there were selfies.

This actually played music.
I was so impressed. 
Who hasn't played with Fisher Price?!
i remember the pig was my favorite.
Just cause he was so damn cute.
Yeah. Barrel of monkeys.
We spent hours playing with these little guys...
hooking one arm into the other.

Why we didn't end up in an asylum
after 2 hours of this
i'll never know. ;-)

colored lights,
the freedom to create what we wanted,
and a dark room...
what more could an artist want?

You had to slowly knock out the ice blocks
without breaking the whole surface.
If the surface broke,
and your little guy fell through,
you were scarred for life.
And you lost the game.
Double whammy.

Who remembers these?!?
Basically, a free trip
to the emergency room.

I smashed more fingers, wrists and elbows with these babies
than i care to recall.
(yes, elbows. I sucked)

For a while back in the 70's
telephone pole wires everywhere 
had these "Clackers" hanging from them.

This is how we rated
whether a town was cool or not.

"Yeah but dad, they're probably really BORING here!!
I see no clackers ANYWHERE!"
Today's Canadian health & safety version.

Poor kids. They don't know what they're missing. 
ah.... Doodle Art.
An overdose of fun.
And of butterflies.
These large format posters
were sold in tubes back then,
along with the markers.
Kind of like a huge coloring book page
on its own.
They all had specific themes.
My favorite theme was the underwater ocean one...

For obvious reasons.
In one of my past lives,
i was a fish.

Ah... another free trip to the hospital...
Basically, a pen with a metal tip 
that you plugged in until it was hot enough to burn wood.
Or skin.
Or the kitchen table. 

It came with several different tips,
and a series of different wood designs...
Flowers, horses, scary clowns.

Whenever i needed to threaten my brothers,
this was the object of choice.

Who needs Mafia when you have a wood burning gadget?

...and the Etch a sketch... ;-)

Do any of these resonate with any of you?
Did you have a favorite toy as a child,
or a favorite thing to do?

I have tons more i could share
but i'll keep those for another post.
Thanks for hanging out.


  1. Hi Pauline, wow, I recognise many these toys but I never played with them -- a result of growing up poor... Mostly I remember playing Catch, hide-and-seek, and marbles. I'm wondering what my son will remember from his childhood (he doesn't own i-anything), and I hope to keep his childhood as natural and technology-free for as long as possible.

    Thanks for sharing your precious memories. :-)

  2. Hwee, i understand why you want an "i-free" childhood for your son (a difficult task today!) For the record, i have very fond memories of playing marbles and hide & seek as a child too. xox

  3. Oh my gosh Pauline, you found THE best toys! Started off with a quote from Nietzsche--awesome. Sad to say, the only one I don't recognize is the clackers. Guess we didn't live in a cool town. I still have a lite bright (in my office at work). It's the 'flat screen' version. Ha! Thank you so much for this amazing trip down memory lane! xoxo

  4. Such great memories - we did a lot of playing outside - tether ball was a definite favorite. Let's see inside - pick up sticks, tiddly winks, jacks, marbles, Mr. Potato Head, dolls-lots of dolls, pot holder loom, toy sewing machine, all kinds of board games....so many good times. Thanks for reminding me.

  5. Lorinda... WOW, a flat screen version of Lite Brite! You rock! ;-)
    cjsrq - yeah, there was a lot more playing outside then compared to now, wasn't there? We'd stay out for hours too... till it was dark. ;-)

  6. Oh P you are HYSTERICAL. Sounds like you spent quite a large amount of time in the ER! ;) I remember a lot of these. Also those black boards you can scratch a painting into, and Operation, where you had to take the internal organs out without touching the sides. Man this was a fun post. I'd forgotten about loads of these.

  7. I do remember all of these! (Yeah, I'm back!!) The Fisher Price record player was my favourite but I didn't own it, my neighbour across the street did and I coveted it!!
    The horse was my favourite, again though, I could only play with it at my neighbours house.
    My brother and I ruined our lite bright by replacing the burnt out light bulb with a 100 watt bulb which melted the plastic screen (luckily it did NOT burn down our house!).
    Some of my other favourites were the Easy Bake Oven; Chrissy doll with Auburn "growing" hair; Skipper doll who "grew up" when you twisted her arm; the Fuzzy Pumper Barber Shop Playdough set, endless paper dolls with funky seventies outfits just to name a few. And I remember that my brother had a Stretch Armstrong and we both got pogo sticks for Christmas one year!