Cars & Trains & Planes


Raising a two-year old has its usual charms: first sentences, giving them the independence they are craving (while teaching them discipline), maybe working some potty training into the day - and a fascination for anything with wheels!


Is your child completely happy to stop and watch a construction site, or wait for a train to pass? In Berlin, when trams and busses were apart of our daily life, we would sometimes work in extra stops because Francesco was so heartbroken when the rides were over. His favorite toy at home is anything that he can 'drive around the house' and a toy car is the perfect thing to keep him occupied when out at a restaurant.


Now, it might be the teacher in me, but I love curating a set of books at home that either connect to our present life (seasons, holidays, place), or follow his interests. Transportation was no different. Our transportation favorites found their way onto the shelf together downstairs, where he could read them cuddled up against a pillow, and just before building up a train track of his own. They also took turns working their way into bedtime routines, to the point we could read them with our eyes shut. Here are a few of our faves:



It's amazing to see how his vocabulary grows while reading these books - and even the joy on his face when he makes connections between the books and his surroundings. As he recently became the master at reading and following stop lights, we had to revisit Go Dogs Go! When we were out on his bike, he was constantly getting stuck like in Little Blue Truck. A tuk-tuk had been only part of the Bear on a Bike book until we moved to Portugal. You can only imagine his overwhelming joy each time we spot them on the road.



We also have a few favorite 'transportation' toys as well, that still leave room for his own creative play: Melissa & Doug My First Vehicle Stamps, a Way to Play Road, and the extended sets of the LILLABO Train set from IKEA. Its amazing to see how much Caoimhe wants to engage with these toys as well, and is quickly getting better at playing with him (and not accidentally destroying everything). Right now Francesco is really into tunnels, and following her brother's lead, Caoimhe pushes the cars through the tunnels right behind him.


I know there are so many other amazing toys out there that engage our young minds around vehicles and transportation. What have been some favorites that have made their way into your home?