Treasure or junk?

Experience has told me to check the pockets of my youngest daughter’s pants before washing them. What I mostly find are rocks. She loves rocks. Sticks too. Feathers. Her backpack has more treasures – larger rocks and objects she finds on the playground. A broken this or a piece of that.

Her recent treasures:


What do we have? Some cool beads, blue wooden block, hair clips, bouncy ball, feather (my daughter picks up ALL feathers with glee), nerf ball piece, packing chips, and a rock. She arranged her treasures on a fabric scrap (another treasure) for me to photograph.

Treasure or junk?

I love children and their unique perspective. So young and fresh. Children are often amused, excited, and interested in things that adults like me overlook. My daughter finds broken bits of plastic on the playground and they become toys. Using her imagination, broken discarded items become useful. My daughter rarely discards anything. And, if she finds something – it’s always a treasure.

I look at the nerf ball piece (yellow thing pictured above, under the feather) and think junk, while my daughter thinks treasure. What’s the difference? Context. Her context is one of wonder and mine is well… less wondrous. I recognize the item and label it – oh that’s a piece of a nerf ball. And then, since it’s broken I call it junk.

However, living with children gives me an opportunity to shift my context. I get to see the world through their eyes – and in this case, I get to see discarded broken things as treasures. What a gift.

What about you? Do your children help you shift your context? Do you bring home rocks and treasures? Please leave a Comment.


One thought on “Treasure or junk?

  1. My son ( almost 8 ) loves the styrofoam packaging that comes in a box—not just the peanuts but mostly the big hunks of oddly shaped blocks that would go around a piece of electronics or whatever. Obviously, we don’t buy stuff like that very often, so for him it is a big treat. He likes to make art out of found objects, turn that piece into a robot or whatever. (It’s hard to color on styrofoam, unfortunately.) It does drive me crazy to see that stuff in the house, though because 1) I don’t want Kitty chewing on it 2) I don’t want tiny balls of the stuff in the carpet 3) from an environmental perspective, styrofoam just makes me so angry! Its presence in my home is an abomination! :-)
    We’ve done the rock and stick thing in the washer/dryer thing too. I had to pay $300+ a few years ago because something he picked up got stuck in the washer and water flooded out the front. Not pretty.

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