I love it when I get to see my children's creative ideas flow out of them and straight into their play. This happened yesterday when Daisy a) retrieved two empty tissue boxes from the recycling box and b) decided it was time to play shoe shop.
She asked me, 'What do you want your shoes to do for you?' in the manner of Steve Light's The Shoemaker Extraordinaire, a book we'd read together at a friend's house about a week ago. I was meant to reply something along the lines of 'I'd like them to make me taller or faster or snazzier.' I was playing catch-up at this point though - not quite remembering the thrust of book - so Daisy vetoed all my early, more practical ideas; in the end I was allowed to ask for shoes that made me jump higher.
Then Daisy set to work cutting, decorating and lacing up the boxes to meet her specifications. Of course this was easy for her - she was, she informed me, the best shoemaker in the world.
Eventually it was time to open:
'Daisy's Jimna Shoe Shop
Best Shoe Shop In The World'
She made a sign for the door, set up a counter and fetched her cash till before I was allowed in. She measured my feet using a ruler and tape, and double-checked the type of shoes I had ordered. At last it was time for my fitting and I was presented with the finished footwear.
Yes, they were rather roomy and, let's face it, rigid - they were boxes after all - but Daisy was completely immersed in the pretence of the game. She was sure she had made me the ultimate jump-enhancing shoes, so I paid up my 20p eagerly - and jumped around the shop gratefully.
Watch out FitFlop - there's a new kid on the block, and she means business.
[How lovely to be featured on this week's It's Playtime - check it out for more fantastic play ideas]