The ‘wanderlust’ category

The Green Base Situation

December 20th, 2017

Note green base, the foundation of every great Lego masterpiece

Note green base, the foundation of every great Lego masterpiece

My kids are really into Legos and play with them for hours every day. It’s remarkable considering the only Legos we have are one small hand-me-down set.

For Christmas, Jon and I decided to get them more Legos. I wanted to go to the actual toy store to buy them in person so we could see what we were getting, but the one day that one of us could have possibly broken away to go without the girls, we got over a foot of snow. The toy store is 45 minutes down the highway in another state, so no. 

We resorted to Amazon Prime, like we always do. That’s a rabbit hole I sincerely hope you never have to go down yourself. Many, many hours of consumer research later, we landed on a set that fulfilled our parameters: 

  • Not a set that only makes one thing, like if you put every single Lego together it makes a tractor, but only a tractor
  • Nothing in the “girl toddler” category that’s inevitably pink and involves princesses for some inexplicable reason that has nothing to do with Legos
  • It has to have a “green base.”

The green base is the coveted piece from our current set that they fight over every single day. The alternative to the green base is a poor substitute: you have to cobble together three long yellow pieces and two orange pieces to create a subpar platform that falls apart more easily. The Lego struggle is real.

The set we found said and I quote “2 of LEGO DUPLO Creative Play Lego Duplo Large Green Building Plate 2304 Building Kit” and looked like this:

 Green base 

My attention to detail might be lacking these days, but I think you will agree that at first, second, and even maybe third glance this appears to be a Lego set. Not so much. It’s just a green base. For $11. 

We actually figured this out before it arrived. So we remedied the situation with yet another soulless Amazon Prime purchase. In truth, the girls probably would have been entirely psyched just for the bases. But we wanted to expand their Lego world a little more than that.

When the green bases arrived, I figured out why they cost $11 each—for one piece of Lego. Because they were huge. So huge, in fact, that the box wouldn’t fit in our huge mailbox, which, to give you an idea, holds about 5-6 boxes easily. It’s the mailbox equivalent of my first car, an Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme, which could comfortably seat about 8 people, no problem, in a sedan with bench seats. 

When a package won’t fit in our mailbox, the post office won’t leave it, because our house is a half mile farther up the road. So I had to go to the post office to pick the green bases up. In town. With the girls. The Saturday before Christmas.

I have never gone to the post office with both girls in my life, for good reason. It entails getting them both in the car, OUT of the car, into our double-wide stroller, and into the post office using the ADA-compliant ramp and doorway. That’s just for starters. Then it entails them being cool with staying calmly in the stroller while we stand in line at the post office. And trust me when I say that they know how to undo the buckles.

The irony that we were doing this for the sake of their Christmas present was quite lost on them, but I was fortunate that they agreed to go along with the whole charade unwittingly.

A few days later, the backup box arrived, and, guess what?, couldn’t fit in the mailbox. So we had to do it all over again.

Chop wood, carry water.


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