Makes Me Sigh, Snips And Snails

Jay Jay

“Mom,” Sean said, “I want you to take these baby toys and put them away.”

He was standing next to my desk holding a small box.

He laid the box on its side and Jay Jay and the gang came to a crash landing on my desk with a clatter.

“What’s wrong with Jay Jay?” I asked puzzled. “You love Jay Jay.”

I picked Jay Jay up.  He was missing a bit of his tail section but was just as bright and cheerful as ever.

“Well I’m big now,” he said seriously.  “I’m more into planes that really fly.”


“No!  Stick with Jay Jay!” I wanted to say.

But I didn’t.

I took the little box of airplanes and stuck them in the back of his closet.

The next day, when he wasn’t looking, I pulled them out and lined them all up again one last time and took their picture.

I recalled the day we bought Jay Jay at the Pensacola Flight Museum.  Sean was two and a half and had a head full of long blond curls.   I remembered how happy it made him and how he clutched that little plane to his chest in his fat little dimpled hand.  I remembered how happy it made me to buy it for him.

And now, so soon, he is more into real planes.

One by one, I tucked each of the little planes back into the box and then returned them to the back of the closet.

So long Jay Jay.


41 thoughts on “Jay Jay

  1. I hate it when they think are “to big” and call their toys “their baby” toys. Both my boys loved Fisher Price Little People and when the both out grew them I put them away in the closet then about a year later they would find them and play with them all over again. So there is hope for Jay-Jay yet!

  2. Keep them! Someday he will want them again…maybe when he is grown & has a sone of his own, but he will remember them always. My little grandsons are too soon outgrowing the “Thomas the Train” stage. Ahhhh, were do the days & months go so quicky?

  3. I loved this post. My little one is 3 and getting so big. I don’t know how I’m going to cope with growing up. (I’m already going to have problems with him starting preschool soon. And it’s only for 2.5 hours a day!)
    Thanks for being such a great example of how to let our little ones grow up.

  4. I have a big (pink) storage box for each girl for “baby favorites”. When they’ve outgrown something that was a favorite it goes in the box. Every so often I go through them and purge a little. (I liked an awful lot of their teeny tiny little clothes). A favorite (board) book, first toy/doll, outfit(s), etc… Not too many things, but I think they’ll appreciate it when they’re older. And if not, I can pull them out and reminisce in my old age.

    Note: since I’m trying not to save too much (clutter) it has to fit in the box or it has to go. Thus the purge every so often. This is a box for 18 yrs (or so).

  5. Oh, yes, I am totally there with you! My baby boy starts KINDERGARTEN in a few weeks! *sob*

    As sad as I am to leave the little baby boy behind, I am thrilled beyond belief at some of the insanely hilarious and intelligent things that come out of his mouth these days. Someday, he’ll be smarter than me. But I’ll be durned if I’ll ever let him know about it.

    * * *
    I know. Sean is always reducing me to tears with some tender thing and then will blurt out some random funny thing – hence my schizophrenia.

    And, he already is smarter than me. No secret there.

  6. Why does it have to go so fast? Even though this is so much wonderful ahead, it still is hard to see it whirl by.

    At any moment, by baby will wake up, and I will sweep him into my arms, and with everything I can muster, I’ll try to make time stand still.

  7. This brought literal crocodile tears to my eyes… they do grow up too fast. It seems like yesterday that Elijah was into Jay Jay… now he has moved on to 1924564523 legos all over his floor..

    I miss tripping over those little planes.

  8. This made me cry. I felt the same way about Thomas the Tank Engine. It was my boy’s whole life for 5 years and then suddenly, he didn’t want trains that TALKED. They are beaten, battered, chewed upon and a little dinged up. But, they’re in a box, in the closet where they have been for more than two years.

    They won’t be hitting the garage sale circuit either. I can’t do it.

  9. A couple of days ago, Bean tried to give her baby brother the little stuffed kitty I’d brought to the hospital and lay in her bassinette the day she was born. “But I’m not a baby anymore, Mama,” she said.

    “YOU WILL ALWAYS, *ALWAYS* BE MY BABY, AND YOU ARE KEEPING KATIE KITTY FOREVER,” I said. And Katie Kitty is back where she belongs on the shelf above her bed.

    It’s fine if she wants to grow up, but she’s certainly not dragging ME along with her.


  10. For us it was Blue’s Clues. We had lots of the stuff… and then one day it was ov-ah! sniff sniff!

    I kept most of the stuff. I bump into it every once in a while and it reminds me how far we’ve come.

    Yep.. sigh.

  11. my baby is 40 and I still have a couple of Ziggy’s that she had. I can’t tell you where the time went either.

  12. Oh! I feel the same way about Jude’s Thomas trains! They provided him with HOURS and HOURS of play, and now that he’s 6? Nothing. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to let them go.

  13. You made me get all teary eyed. They grow up so quickly…

    As my boy has outgrown his toys, I have begun packing some of them away for the grandkids.

  14. oooh that hurts. where’s the tissue; i’m sniffling here. we’re at that stage now with mine (he’ll be 6 in about 1 1/2 weeks)… we are putting his sandbox and backyard play structure up on Craig’s List and so my husband dragged out the photos we had taken when we bought them; my son was probably about 18 months old.

    why do they have to get older? 🙁 sniff.

  15. Someone gave us a gigantuous box of Thomas tracks and little trains and bridges and buildings. Sean was about 2 at the time and we had no idea who Thomas was. And we also had no idea that we’d been given about $1000 worth of Thomas.

    He doesn’t play with Thomas as much as he used to, but every once in a while he’ll think of it and want me to get it out and we’ll spend the afternoon putting it all together.

    I would recommend not gluing down the tracks or getting the table because

    a) it takes up entirely too much space (we don’t have a play room – we do but it has other stuff in it) which means if Thomas had his own table he be parked in the middle of my den for sweet forever.

    b) It’s nice to box it all up and make Thomas go away for awhile — makes him new and fun again if you haven’t seen him for a while (absence make the heart grow fonder and all that good stuff).

    c) Most of the fun of Thomas, for us, is in configuring the track layout.

    Thus concludes my treatise and testimony and everything I know about or ever wanted to know or ever hope to know about Thomas.

  16. We sort of have the opposite problem here. My kids don’t ever want to get rid of ANYTHING. The house is bulging at the seams with stuffed toys, games and school projects.

    And Michael, the five-year-old, is in complete denial that he is actually getting any older or bigger, so he doesn’t want to part with anything either. Including his baby swing. I’ll have to get a picture of him in it next opportunity.

    I know we’ll end up keeping some of the more special things even if they’re okay with letting them go. There’s some things I’m not willing to let go.

  17. Oh, shot through the heart with memories. I remember the last time I got to read “Good Night, Moon”…and the next night it was a “baby” book.

  18. I’m totally crying here. The picture reminded me of Toy Story when Woody feels like he’s not important anymore.

    So sad. *sniff*

    Mine is turning 3 next week. Where does time go?

  19. Awwwwwwwww . . . Last night my 2nd oldest (21 yrs old) returned home from a 2 year mission in Romania. We went out to eat at a Mexican restaurant. At the restaurant there was a couple, their parents and their 6 day old baby girl. We were the only 2 groups left in the restaurant as it was closing. I went over and asked if I could look at their baby and ended up chatting for a minute. They were so nice. They asked if the kids in our group were all ours. I said yes and you won’t believe how fast they grow up. I could not believe they used to be soooooooo tiny. It keeps being wonderful but I am no good with change.

  20. Loved this post. My seven year old great nephew Alex and his 10 year old sister Rachel were visiting yesterday from out of town and I pulled down my baby (29)son Chris’s old micro machines with the airport, marina, town, etc. The kids had such a good time that it brought back memories of Chris playing with those same toys. We later went over to visit Chris and his 3 week old son, Easton, and watched as Chris and Alex sat in the floor playing Wii and I looked over at Rachel holding Easton, and couldn’t help thinking that in no time it will be little Easton sitting with dad playing video games and Rachel having babies of her own. BTW Rachel held and marveled at baby Easton the entire hour and a half we were there. Alex could have cared less about the baby. Oh, the differences between boys and girls.

  21. It won’t be the same, but he’ll want Jay Jay again. You’ll sit together as you go through the contents of the box and you’ll both smile and get all warm and gooey inside when you think about how much he loved the little plane. It won’t be the same, but it’ll be another precious memory.

  22. Oh, MAN! Why did you have to post a thing like that? I have five girls, and my latest child is my only boy. He is going on three in September. He is my little lover boy, and I don’t want him to grow up! Waaaaahhhh!!

    But this is so sweet to read at the same time.

  23. I have a secret stash of the favorite toys of my sons (or me!) that I hope to pass on to their kids one day. My mom just pulled out a book she read as a child to read with them, so I’m hoping to find new treasures….but it sure is bittersweet. Big hugs!

  24. Replace Jay Jay with Thomas and planes with trains and you’ve described my son. He moved to wooden “trains without faces” to wooden trains that look just like the real thing (Santa Fe, Union Pacific, etc). Now he wants genuine model trains and it makes his day if we see an actual freight train.

    Every now and then he talks about selling all his Thomas stuff so he can buy more model train things. I want to stick Thomas in a box and keep it for ‘one of those days’ when he’ll be old enough to be glad to see Thomas and Percy and Alfie (the digger that he carried around for his whole 3rd year) again.

  25. Oh yeah… we are soooo over Thomas and Jay Jay! Get ready for light sabers and legos!! Every now and then those Thomas toys come back out though:-) I did just sell the train table and was a little sad, but man do we have a much bigger play room now.

  26. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who goes through this. When my 8 year old grandson told me that he didn’t want to watch the Thomas the Train videos anymmore, I was crushed. I’m a big model train junkie so I watched them for the layouts. I do have younger grandkids that I will have to introduce to Thomas.

  27. This brought tears to my eyes. We are going through this with Harry and Backyardigans. A couple weeks ago he pronounced that Backyardigans “was for babies” when I tried to put it on the Tivo for him.

    I felt like I was on borrowed time when I took him to a little playmate’s birthday party and it was, you guessed it, Backyardigans.

    When he puts aside Thomas, I will weep uncontrollably.

  28. Hating that my daughter was growing up so fast, I put some of her toys away for memory’s sake. Last month she turned 40, and I still sometimes wish she was 3 again, playing with her Sunshine Family!

  29. It’s so hard for us moms to realize our baby’s are “too big” for some special toys or trinkets. ThatOtherKid wanted all his Winnie the Pooh stuff taken down from the walls a month ago and that was hard for me!

  30. ~Echo Sigh~ I so relate to this post albeit on the other end of the short epoch called ‘raising kids’. I’m grateful you gave words and voice to my emotions as you so often do.

    Our youngest, the 20YO, left for college again today. Yesterday he thoroughly cleaned out bookshelves & closets & boxes. He brought me boxes of stuff to put away or throw away, stating clearly this was his last summer he plans to live at home. From now on, it’ll just be visits, says he. He has plans.

    I wanted to say, “No! Live at home summers at least!” but I didn’t. I wanted to weep, but held my tears in the back of my throat. Instead, I tried to focus on the joy I felt in his readiness to fly.

    Why is it so hard when they achieve the very thing we’ve worked so hard to instill?

  31. Oh my goodness. I just has the same experience with my daughter. She decided it was time for all of her ponies to go. She wanted us to box them up and take them to a second hand store near us. She loved the idea of someone else getting a chance to play with them. I, on the other hand, was not ready to let go of them. I was not ready for her to start growing up this soon. I just could not get over how hard it was for me to pack those boxes up, put them in the car and drop them off. I kept on asking her if she was sure. She is 8 and 2 months old right now – she reminded me. I see so much of myself in her – I remember how much trouble I gave my parents. I was the child who had to figure out everything for myself – no one could tell me anything. I know that the Lord has blessed me with my daughter and he has answered my mother’s prayers for me to have a daughter just like myself.

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