Lego Angst

June 15th, 2013 by Dionna | 10 Comments
Posted in Children, Eclectic Learning, Just for Fun/Miscellaneous, My Family, natural parenting, Preschoolers, Respond with Sensitivity

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Lego Angst

A completed Lego Star Wars set

Oh, the Lego angst. It seems our lives have become consumed with a flurry of Lego-related drama and emotions. To wit:

Lego Lust

There is the wanting of the Legos. But not just any Legos, it is the specific lusting after the oh-so-cool-very-special Lego sets every time we go to the store. The ones that cost $20, $40, $75.

Hats off to whichever marketing genius decided to marry the Lego brand with motion pictures. Not only do they create Lego sets to go along with popular movies (Star Wars Legos are the epitome of awesomeness in our house), but there are entire Lego shows and movies with original characters. The Lego empire knows no bounds.

Lego Envy

Because we do not own a lot of Legos (yet), I get to hear all about the Legos that friends have.

Which leads us to . . .

Lego Begging

“But Freddy owns THREE Star Wars sets and he has TEN mini figures! Why can’t we buy just this ONE?!”

Lego Haste (aka Lego Regret)

When one is too hasty in making a Lego purchase, one might get said Lego purchase home only to live with the remorse of not having chosen some other Lego set.

It’s a hard knock life.

{Perhaps also the feeling a parent might get after purchasing a pricey Lego set that is underappreciated?}

Lego Instructions Induced Trauma

Then there is the putting together of the special Lego sets that we’ve caved in and gotten.


If your child has tendencies toward perfectionism and also happens to enter the world of Legos at a young age, heaven help you. The meltdowns that come when Kieran cannot quite fit something together — but he wants to do it on his own — very tough to handle as a parent at times. It has taken some time, but I think I am now at a place where I can breathe through the storm and let him know that I am here if he needs me.

{Before, I might have shrieked over the wailing, “Then maybe we should put them away until you feel better able to do them, because I can’t take this!” Once or twice. Ahem.}

Lego Angst at Code Name: Mama

The Kansas City night sky at Legoland


Lego Hangover

This is the shared feeling children and parents can experience after too many Legos. E.g., after a Lego instructions-induced meltdown. Or after a day at Legoland.

Lego Obsession

I don’t mind the excessive play with Legos – for the most part. It’s a quiet activity {minus the instructions-related nightmares}, it is educational, it flexes the creativity muscles. But sometimes we need to do something else besides play with colorful little bricks.

Like eat.

Lego Wear-ing Me Out

Also? Lego brand clothing? {head –> desk} Kieran has one Lego t-shirt; for awhile, he wanted to wear it God forbid if it had been worn so much it held his shape and brushed its own invisible Lego brick teeth. I had to launder that puppy while Kieran slept.

{He is wearing it right this very second.}

Lego Storage {or the lack thereof} Anxiety

My Lego-obsessed child also has a problem letting things go. Maybe this is a common thing for five year olds. Every Lego ship, every Lego car, every Lego building must be preserved for posterity’s sake for some indeterminable future.

Every spare space was being taken over by Lego creations. Our guest bed. The guest dresser. The shelves in the backroom. The shelves in the toy room. We finally had a very lengthy sit down to define how many and where Lego creations could be stored. We came to an agreement we could both live with, but it was like pulling teeth to get him to work through it with me.

Lego Angst at Code Name: Mama

Making a Lego car with friends at Legoland


Leggo My Lego

Related to Lego Storage, one of the reasons Kieran did not want to put his Lego creations away was because {an unidentifiable} someone might play with them. {gasp}

I know. It’s unthinkable.

Also difficult to enforce. We’ve had many, many talks about how he loves to play with Legos at his friends’ houses, and so it would be nice if we could return the favor. Like many things in childhood, it’s a work in progress.

What about at your house – are Legos popular? Have you experienced any Lego-induced headaches?

Photo Credits: Author

10 Responses to:
"Lego Angst"

  1. Ruth Mitchell

    What about Lego induced INJURIES…those things HURT when you step on them with a bare foot!!!!! ;-)

  2. Your post made me smile, my eldest was just like that with his first few sets. Now the bits just get everywhere in his room and his carpet more often than not is more lego than carpet. You can buy the mini figures on their own in the UK in a little bag and you are not sure which one you are buying, them come in sets so my children want to collect them all, but never do as I only buy the odd one. They do play with the people a lot making up stories and plays with them. Sometimes I hate the stuff but it does get played with alot here.

  3. Sibylle

    I have the best memories of lego as a child. I played more with Playmobil (I understood they were not that common in the USA ?), but lego were second runner up.

    I do not relate to what you are saying at all ! I guess I was very different from the kind of child Kieran is right now. I didn’t care for the special sets, I just had a very big box full of lego pieces (or maybe two or three), and I would build whatever was in my mind. The sets only came into play much later in my life, when I was about ten, and by then, I was a lot more adroit with my hands and space perception, and I never had any sort of difficulty, much less the need of an adult.

    I really liked the Harry Potter kits ! I don’t use lego anymore, not the toys, but I still play Harry Potter Lego on my DS like a child would. Those are such great games.

    • Ruth Mitchell

      Sibylle, I don’t think the marketing “geniuses” had come up with the special kits until just a few years ago. Dionna ( My oldest daughter) played with the big box of legos as a child herself, there were no “special” kits…and they weren’t trying to sell you a new different set everytime a new movie came out!! I think that is a much better way of exercising your imagination that just building one particular thing from a “kit”. Kieran loves his kits but he uses them to build other things that are his own creations!!

      • Dionna   CodeNameMama

        Good point on the kits – I bet they didn’t market them decades ago. I think Kieran will like free play with Legos a little more when he’s older. I know a lot of 5yo’s are very rule-oriented, so the manuals probably hold a certain developmental appeal for them (although they don’t necessarily for the parents).

  4. Roozoonoomom

    Our boys have acquired an uncountable number of Legos and Bionicles over the last 7 years of holidays and birthdays. And I encourage gift-buyers to buy more when they call to ask what they need. Its the one thing that has a home where a few more cannot hurt. A couple years ago I had a genius idea (sniff) that keeps these little buggars off the floor. A loft in each of the boys’ bedrooms. They look like the Ikea version, only custom made by my dear husband. So, the Legos live on the top of one loft, and the Bionicles live on the other. The bulk of them. They have whichever collection the boys are playing with on tables in their rooms. And I use collection loosely, each new set gets thrown into the monster pile within a week of opening, keeping only the prize peices out to play with. But my boys invent new models, and really do neat stuff with them, so I just let it be. AND, as the boys grow, the loft can become their bed, and we put a couch and lamp underneath, like the lovely Ikea model. :)

  5. We have just entered the world of lego with our most recent birthday party. It’s SUCH a big deal isn’t it?! The biggest eyeopener for me was that my daughter (almost 6) is so in love with it and will sit down with the instructions and build something perfectly for hours at a time. Makes me feel very ashamed that she’s never been exposed to it before, and has had to wait until her 4 year old brother was given some. Gender stereotyping much?!

  6. I just bought my 21 month old daughter a Lego Duplo set, and was SHOCKED to see that I paid .50 per block. That is insane! I am pleased to see that as she gets older the block to penny ratio will decrease.

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