I went shoe shopping today. As I tried on various pairs, my scavenger of a son snapped up the cardboard inserts, and quickly created a series of appendages and accoutrements: bat ears, a duck bill, a double tail, ear protectors for the subway, a bra, elbow shields.
Little Guy has an eagle eye for anything anyone has dropped or abandoned. No matter where we go, he comes home with pockets bulging with treasures only Tom Sawyer would appreciate. A bent nail and a bracelet charm have equal appeal; broken water balloons are just as important as whole rubber bands. Ticket stubs, hair holders, a cracked pail, a bent bobby pin -- he'll take it all.
Most of these pearls mysteriously disappear at night, when the Un-Packrat comes out of her lair and clears up the detritus of the day. Occasionally I will allow something fun (like the bat ears) to stick around for a few days to see what else becomes of them. Tonight Little Guy tried to make 'musical shoes' by whacking them with a stick. He safely stowed them in the shoe box ("Mom, I've always wanted a box like this, with the lid attached"), so that tomorrow they'll be ready to be re-made into something new.