Kyle's Lego Dream @LegoKidsFest 2012
Sometimes I wish I could go back to the days when I was six and my biggest problem was what kind of dress to put on Barbie or whether or not I had enough Legos to build a fort. ~Unknown
It has been nearly a week since the Lego Kids Fest in Pittsburgh and it's still being relived by Kyle, daily. Like many others, I purchased our tickets in advance online to ensure our coveted spot. Nicole was suppose to join us, but alas she couldn't make it home for Lego Fest 2012, guess she'll have to catch up next year. On a side note, there should be some sort of site for those who have extra tickets to give them away. Buying two adult tickets and one child and only using one adult and one child was a little costly. Not that I ever wanted reimbursement, I just didn't want the money to go to waste. Anyway, Aunt Nikki participated through social means as much as possible. Used correctly, social media really does bring families together.
Originally, when I saw Lego Fest on Facebook, I was going to get our tickets and surprise Kyle, but I blew it. When we were talking about Kyle's schedule and everything going on with hunting season, youth group and school, I accidentally let it slip. His eyes got really big and was in kind of shock. He started to say something, but then his brain caught up to my words and registered before saying, "Wait? What? Did you say we're going to Lego Fest?" I could see my statement replaying in his brain, making sense of the words as if he was learning a foreign language. Now I couldn't deny it, so I did what I usually do when I want to be coy. I flashed Kyle a huge ornery grin and shot him a wink. He instantly went running to my mom saying, "Gigi, Gigi did you hear? I'm going to Lego Fest!" That's my Kyle! Always focused on the word Lego.
Everyone, who is even remotely familiar with our family and Kyle, knows Kyle's LOVE of Legos. Maybe that's a bit of an understatement, he has an infatuation for the multicolored plastic building blocks. One might say I added fuel to his already obsessive fire with the Lego Kids Fest event.
With the weeks leading up to Leo Fest, Kyle really impressed me. He was on his best, and I mean being the champion and poster child for a well behaved kid. Did I also mention he made a conscience effort to point out this behavior? To ensure it was not overlooked. He knew the stakes, and was not about to gamble with his victory ticket to attend an event solely revolved around Legos. To be honest, I was really excited to take him and let him experience the popularity of Legos with those of like minds. I knew this was a dream of his and if there was anyone who would appreciate Lego Fest, it was Kyle.
One day, hopefully before he outgrows Legos, I will take him to California or Florida to visit Legoland. He's been asking for years to fly him to California to be surrounded by all things Lego. He really wants to go for his birthday, but that's such an expensive birthday gift and I never just wanted to take Kyle, I would want my parents and my sister to also tag along to share in Kyle's enthusiasm. Maybe that should be my next goal to work toward, making it happen.
By now, I thought Kyle would have outgrown Legos. After all he's 11 years old. Nope, he loves them equally as much now, as he did when he first laid his pudgy little fingers on the Lego pieces. In fact, the bridge built between Kyle and Legos has strengthened with every building block put together over the years. I don't remember who gave him his first Lego set, probably his Aunt Nikki, but it was all downhill from there.
He always loved to build, even as a tiny kid just able to walk. He started with his first Thomas the Tank Engine set, courtesy of Aunt Nikki. Now don't get me wrong, he enjoyed playing with the train set, but he really liked to build the tracks, making each configuration more challenging and exciting than the last. His setup looked like a miniature roller coaster ride for trains.
Then, came the puzzles, first easy ones all the way into thousand plus piece sets. His building interest moved onto Legos and Bionicles. I will take credit for the love of Bionicles. Kyle won a bet with me and for his winnings he chose a Bionicle. At the time he was five years old and the box stated it was for eight or older, but I figured he could put it together, which he did with ease. Now, the Legos started off small and his collection has expanded to overtake several bedrooms at multiple houses. Kyle still likes the smaller Legos, but his newest obsession is putting together Legos with thousands of pieces. It's almost a badge of honor he wears when tackling such challenges. He loves to brag about the number of pieces the Lego set has and his anticipated ETA for project completion. Too much! Once he has the Lego set built, he does play with them just like any other toy, but that's secondary to the real pleasure of building. Remember Going Retro with Star Wars Legos?
Saturday morning Kyle and I were up bright and early to get ready for the 9:00 am session of Lego Kids Fest 2012. It was held at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh. As I expected, especially with a sold out event, there were lots of parents and loads of kids. I thought it was going to be a struggle getting in and walking around, but I was pleasantly surprised. The convention center moved everyone in with ease and once inside, all activity areas were spaced out pretty well and all booths were labeled adequately. When I bought the tickets, I anticipated Kyle being at the older end of the age spectrum, but he was not! There were kids of all ages, mostly his age and younger, but every age bracket was present. As we moseyed around I saw that look, the same one Kyle has shown be time and time again coming from other parents. Yes! The parents! Some where more obvious than others, but as the adults built alongside their kids, the look was definitely there. It was the Lego obsession that had remained dormant in the over sized kids and was now shining through their eyes into their creations. Some parents where so engrossed in building, they...