FunWithBricks

Eurobricks Ladies
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  1. FunWithBricks

    Girls, stand up !

    Thank you :)
  2. FunWithBricks

    Girls, stand up !

    Wow, really? May I please be enpinkened?
  3. FunWithBricks

    LEGO Pet Peeves

    That's a very good point. Also, with buying old and used sets, it makes the process of cleaning more... well, stressful is probably the wrong word, but yeah, as you phrased it, it is limiting. @AmperZand Thank you, I'm rather looking forward to trying that.
  4. FunWithBricks

    LEGO Pet Peeves

    I was thinking about this. Does it mostly just annoy you when it is a UCS set, or do sticker bricks annoy you a little in general too? Do many around here dislike sticker bricks? How about those who MOC a lot? I'd imagine that sticker bricks would be better than printed, seeing as there would be more variety of options, as in, you can always take the sticker off the brick or even put a new MOC sticker, but it's more hassle to take printing off a printed brick, so it feels more uni-porpose. Haha, yes. Yes indeed. Amazing. Is it easy to get all the excess liquid and air bubbles out? It must be just a tiny, eenie weenie bit of liquid, right?
  5. FunWithBricks

    Girls, stand up !

    Is there really a Ladies Lounge or was that a joke?
  6. FunWithBricks

    Storage and Sorting LEGO

    @splatman Thank you, yes, my husband would agree with you.
  7. FunWithBricks

    Lack of original themes

    One point, what if TLG is harming itself with the lack of themes shouting distinctly LEGO? The big figures in Legoland parks, looking very pixelated with big bricks, they feel "old-fashioned" compared to some things that can be made today, and compared to many fabulous MOCs. But the thick brick they use is iconic. Recently I saw an AFOL describe how he fills his brick-a-wall cups strategically (haha, genius) and feels bad for tourist-like parents who stumble into the lego store, throw some chunky bricks into the box and pay an overpriced sum, and I thought to myself that, perhaps that is due to the chunky bricks being the icon. THE oldfashioned ICON, that they are willing to buy for a higher price, perhaps similar to the experience Aanchir described so articulately: And maybe in part because Lego is considered to be a toy that is "good" for your child, encouraging growth. So, My point would be. What happens if, less people buy Iconic Lego and more buy "insert-licensed-thingie", then does the Lego Icon get watered down? Will people still think of it as the educational toy or is it more "That Star Wars brick stuff?" What will the tourists that go into the Lego stores in 20 years from now be thinking about the Lego brand and how will it affect their buying habits? Or, will they in fact, not even be going into the stores, because by then, the Lego logo may not be seen as an educational toy anymore, in the same way that it is today? Hmm, as i type this, i sort of doubt it though, but is that what you are all worried about when you talk about how Lego has become too licensed and not like the olden days anymore? Considering these theories from the business sector about the life-cycle of companies, that a fledgling startup company may not show much profit, then, when it reaches a certain point, it may turn into a "milk cow", but then, at some point, it will start to tip down, it will become less profitable, and reach company "old age". When new technology comes along, when new perspectives arise in society, making whatever the company sells become outdated, a company may end up bankrupt if it doesn't adjust. Of course this doesn't happen to all companies, but it has happened. (And almost happened, did it not, to Lego a few years back? Hmm, or I could have said it is like that thing you were looking at with Google Charts of Themes). I don't know. I guess my main point is just that, considering the above, one would think that a company like TLG might welcome the opportunity to put focus on the creativity that @ShaydDeGrai and @MAB so beautifully described. That with more generic options, everything is possible. Thus, continuing to brand themselves as "the creative toy" that every parent should want for their child. They are probably already doing that with their 3in1 series, and the Classic boxes, and they are probably aware of all this already. Maybe the problem is not them (TLG) or even the other them (Mindless consumers who never really understood Lego in the first place and only buy licensed stuff). Maybe the movies and tv shows are just too shiny and appealing? What if TLG did a series/movie where the storyline is based on how things can change, all the time? Imagine, following a minifigure in a lego world, and that door that used to be there isn't there anymore and has turned into a wall? What if their face gets changed mid sentence by giant fingers? What if the minifigure hero lost their accessory (taken by giant fingers, of course) and they miss it, and go on a quest to find it, journeying through this magical lego world (because, Lego is magical!), until til finds it in the end, after having endured tasks and trials and befriended a load of minifigures and accessories, only to realise that creativity and changes is a good thing? Maybe that is a bit similar to the Lego Movie, but, in a different way? Having said that, the grey brick in Unikitty is glorious, hopefully raising a generation of children to appreciate the grey brick for its grey-ness. @Peppermint_M Good point, and yes, it does seem to be the age of the hoarding, or generation hoarding as opposed to generation x and generation baby boomers and all of the previous. We have too much stuff. Not just lego. Clothes are cheap. There exist people who rather buy new clothes than washing the dirty ones. 150 years ago, a lot of people would be lucky to have two sets of clothes, and their fancy outfit (for going to church etc) had to last throughout their adult life. But also lego, sets that would once have been considered very big, such as https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?S=6086-1&name=Black Knight's Castle&category=[Castle][Black Knights]#T=S&O={"iconly":0} is only 523 parts, sure, with lots of panels, but compared to today, the big sets have 2-4000 bricks. So, i would propose, in addition to the collecting culture, we are faced with, possibly, more options? Causing even more collecting? In a downward spiral? Dunno, just speculating. That's what I find weird. The Nexo Knights, to me, as a toy, feels like it's perfect for 5-9 year old boys. To build, sure, it's quite complex, so yeah, 7-14, but in terms of the color scheme, the shooting disc fascination, the way everything moves about and flexes, it reminds me of toys 5-9 yo boys love to play with, for some reason. @icm that was a delight to read :) I might add to this, observing my 2yo playing today. He was playing with Creator 31065, the Park Street Townhouse, which has two sort of generic minifigures, a man in a suit and a woman. And he kept saying the woman was mommy, even though she has brown hair and I have blonde hair. Then, much later (after e.g. dismantling the dog, the bird, etc, sometimes rebuilding bits, only to dismantle them again), he grabs a batman bike (76053), puts "mommy" on the bike and kept saying "batman". Earlier this evening, he was playing with duplo, building two opposing walls out of bridge parts, and two walls out of a few bricks, forming a house like square. Then putting a pig down. And a dragon. And singing Old Mac Donald Had a Farm (without the words). Then tearing it all down. And building it up again. He did that a few times (always ending with Old Mac Donald), then the narrative changed a bit with more bricks. So yeah, I think you made a good point, kids will be kids, and licensed stuff will perhaps mean less options but everything is possible. @ShaydDeGrai Your points are all very valid and concisely put forth. And the research behind such points is enormous. But I disagree on one tiny bit, on a slice of perception or semantics or what have you. The brain scans show a clear and concise point. How we interpret that, is up for debate. Much like the Mozart music research, that seemed to prove that listening to classical music made one smarter, only meant that listening to classical music whilst studying helped students remember what they studied, provided the same piece of music was played during the exam. So, an aural stimulant in a study setting that was recreated in an exam setting helped them recall things from the study setting. In a similar way, the brain scans are showing us brain activity when children create a story. Less so when recounting a story. Ok. Let's explore further. Child Development Approaches such as Waldorf/Steiner and Reggio Emilia focus on building creativity by hands-on play and giving children tools and opportunity to develop expression and social skills. Simple toys are good because they can be molded into anything. Dolls with no expressions. Building blocks. Sand. Etc. Lego bricks, the old fashioned ones, are very simple and they can be anything. Then torn apart and be anything else. It all sounds lovely and convincing. How can one object to that? Well. On the other hand, many of us want our children to be good at math. Math is creative and challenging and good. But Math is rules. Math is adhering. Becoming good at math means accepting the rule and following it, again and again and again until you know it by heart. From that standpoint, it doesn't feel very creative. But. It is building blocks (or should I say bricks? haha) one can use to be able to do creative stuff. Another example could be jig saw puzzles. I assume I am safe to say they are generally considered good for children's brain development. But they are confining. A particular puzzle piece fits in its spot and no other spot. A particular puzzle piece can not be some other puzzle piece. It is only this particular puzzle piece and no other thing, in order for the toy, the image, to be whole. The puzzle piece is not creative. But sometimes one has to be creative in order to help the right piece find its right spot, e.g. by turning the piece or trying different locations. If the jigsaw is new, then all the pieces and their spots are new and a lot of information for the brain to work through, but if it has been played with a lot, children end up knowing, by experience, where each piece belongs. Other examples are Jokes. Usually creative, rule breaking. But they are heavily based on simple stereotypes, simple rules. Jazz, free flowing, rule breaking, fluid, creative. But based on motifs. Based on knowing how to play an instruments. Based on learning by heart simple song parts or themes, and building them together in various ways. You have to know the rules in order to be able to break them. Maybe open narrative is not "better", because maybe we need both open and directed. A child might learn how to bake a cake by randomly putting together odd ingredients, but it will take a helluva lot longer than if someone taught them the basics. Some "rules". Then they can break them and add their favourite ingredients or subtract their least favourite, or you know. So. I think I would argue that following rules takes less brain activity and breaking a rule shows more brain activity. Of course, I have no way of definitively proving my argument, since I do not have access to a brain scanner and a copious amount of test subjects. But you know, basically the "think outside the box" idea. So I would argue that a child has to know at least "a story" in order to be able to make up a story from scratch. Movies/TV are not the only directed stories children encounter. Stories are part of everyday life, they're happening all around us. Child is hungry, child gets food. The End. Or from the viewpoint of the plate? Plate is clean, then food is thrown on it, it feels icky. Food is eaten, but the plate is dirty, it goes on a perilous journey into the dark and scary dishwasher to emerge again, transformed, all clean and shiny. The End. Or, turning the same scenario upside down, plate is clean and lonely, unused, forgotten in the bottom of the plate pile. Then finally, due to some tide of events (one plate broke, another was used, another was lost, etc) it finally is chosen and gets to have food on it. Anyway. Some theories claim that all stories follow the same basic pattern, hero facing a problem and solving it, and that all stories can be sorted down into motifs, interchangable "bricks" (an example here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hero's_journey) And two-to-three month old babies can predict patterns/sequences (Marshall Haith, Naomi Wentworth study). So, I would say that a child such as those in the brain scan experiment has already encountered lots and lots of stories, directed stories, and creating one, is more brain activity, as they move the motifs around, spin them upside down, making the jigsaw pieces fit and they form a new story. All this, just to say, that I think i disagree with many of the interpretations of the brain scan experiment. I agree with Waldorf and Reggio Emilia and such theories, in that hands-on play, giving children opportunity to express themselves and feel heard and respected is important. Very important. But even though generic and bland toys probably help with that, I don't think they are necessary. I mean, sure, bland toys are "safe". With movies and tv, there can be all sorts of things said and done that parents don't always agree with. And I understand that you want to protect your daughter from the brands, Kudos to you, good man. It's like the Bobo doll experiment, monkey see, monkey do, and with Movies and TV, it can be a russian roulette, so generic is safe. But I just don't believe that generic is necessary for creativity. I think generic is freedom, lots of options, fewer rules. I understand you may disagree with me, I don't claim to be right (even though, deep in my mind, I probably whisper that to myself), it is just my belief. And I respect your right to have a different belief. You may very well be correct. If you are interested as to why that is my belief, please allow me to take that duplo session with your daughter as an example. If you always argued with her as she made up her stories while you build, saying, "oh, no, this figure is not x because so and so" or whatnot, then you would be limiting her options. Or If you kept forbidding her to but a brick somewhere she instinctively wants to put it. If you were consistently rude about it, she might not like the game at all. But you are not. And the game is lovely. And she feels heard and respected. And I believe that is what is necessary for creativity. The atmosphere. Being allowed to make mistakes and say rubbish things that make no sense. And your point on the spiderman is excellent. I would imagine it is a good example of Game Theory. Make up a bunch of rules, limit options, and there will be an end point to the game. And that creates tension and competition. Making a certain item rare gives it special status and makes it desirable. We know this from many scenarios, but here is one http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/humanbody/truthaboutfood/kids/forbiddingfoods.shtml So having only one spiderman figure makes him more special than the bricks, as well as limiting the game play, just as you described. And just as you and @danth described, less options means more limits. And I agree with you both, of course more options is better, it gives one better control of the situation and more possibilities. But sometimes that can hinder. I might just be saying this because I love some of the specific minifigures but.. Of course it is nice to be able to name a minifigure and decide what they are like, but some children don't want to spend the day deciding upon names, or what the figure's favourite colour should be or whatnot. Some children just want to jump into the game. And more detailed figures and builds can enable that. My daughter, when younger, sometimes wanted to obsessively make the "game rules" before the game, it used to drive me mad, because I just wanted "the game" to start, not realising that discussing game rules was her game. Some people can spend a lot of time designing their game avatar whereas other just pick some random thing and want to start playing. But yeah, I guess you already said that with directed narrative and interactive play. But another thing, sometimes directed can be relaxing and comforting. Following a guideline. A protocol. Not having to invent the wheel, not having to deal with the responsibility that follows. Like MOCs and Sets. It's nice to build a set by the book, one brick at a time, almost like a meditation exercise. MOC building is more creative, but there is also more on the line, it is more personal and every choice can be criticized and judged by others. If it goes well, on the other hand, it can be admired. Neither is inherently good or bad. And it's difficult for one to stand alone from other. If there were no MOCs, then we would all just be building the same thing, ad infinitum. If there were no sets, it would be very difficult to develop the skill base to be able to experiment with MOCs. Maybe not impossible, but more difficult than the alternative, surely. ...sorry about the long post. That sort of... just happened.
  8. FunWithBricks

    Storage and Sorting LEGO

    Of course, you're right, I mean, I'm not looking for some definitive right or wrong way of doing this. Just. I find it so fascinating that here you all are collected, with tons of experience and pearls of wisdom, and I feel this urge to just glean as much insight from you as possible. I'm sorry though, I know this is a subject that has probably been discussed to death, with every other newbie wondering the same, so, yes, sorry about that :) Interesting. I guess there will always be a fair amount of checking several organizers, no matter what sorting system is used :) Until someone invents a tag based automated search engine into which one can simply type one's requirements and then the system can do all the searching and collecting. Or until the 3d printing technology will have become such an integral part of society that one does not purchase particular bricks from lego and rather buys brick templates to print at home... But that will probably happen after my time. Besides, I don't mind sorting, it is sort of nice, to an extent. What I do find, similar to your issue with the Stanley organizers, is that at the moment we don't have the transparent drawers we dream of, only transparent boxes (opting to rather spend money on more bricks than storage containers), and then bricks in small quantities in dividers in boxes, so when a little time passes between checking the boxes, even just a few days, then it becomes a bit difficult to remember where everything is. I realize though, that this is not really a sorting problem, rather a familiarity problem, i suppose sorting is less of an issue than consistency, just consistently browsing and using the bricks.
  9. FunWithBricks

    Defective arch pieces in new set?

    I care. I read this thread with interest. Thank you for raising the issue. And to fred67, imvanya, MAB, ShaydDeGrai and Tron Of Black for pointing out how similar changes in bricks have been phased out in sets before. Good stuff. I haven't purchased that particular set, so I'm sorry not to have any further insight into the matter.
  10. FunWithBricks

    Storage and Sorting LEGO

    Foxw, that's a good way to think of it. I suppose you're right, perhaps it is all about the journey rather than the destination. Oh, and thank you :) Whoa, never been called an AFOL before. That's actually a rather nice feeling. I'm very new to this, never did much lego as a kid other than the random box house, mostly because we never had any lego sets. My husband, on the other hand, loved lego but stopped around the teenage years, so it wasn't till his mother brought over some old lego boxes after our son was born that he started getting back into it and we started buying some new sets. So yeah, I sort of understand the wives I've seen many of you mention here I felt like a bit of an alien to this at first, but our son loves lego, you know, with a passion, so i suppose some of that passion has rubbed off on me, because the whole family has become lego crazy. We gave the daugther (11 yo) a Boozt set for christmas and she was super excited, exclaiming that we had given her her first boyfriend fred67, yes! I've had trouble with the same! All the miscellaneous bits and pieces! ColletArrow, interesting, me and the husband have been discussing the sorting-by-parts vs sorting-by-colour thing quite a bit. He started the sorting by parts, which felt weird to me at the time, but when searching for a specific part for a specific set I've felt that it helps a lot, so now that he has started talking about switching it to sorting-by-colours I've been worried it would make search time longer. But his point is a very good one, in that it should make MOC building easier, and, I am guessing from your comment that such would be the case? Or maybe a mixed sorting? Bricks and plates by colour, and miscellaneous bits by parts? Has anyone tried that, and has any comments on that?
  11. FunWithBricks

    Slope piece is still used for minifigure dresses...?

    spot on. It's actually a wee bit sad to think about it in this context. Aanchir, fastlindyrick, Captain Dee, thanks for sharing those marvels! Aanchir, I can totally imagine that as a part of a minifigure, making the minifigure assembly even more fun.
  12. FunWithBricks

    Storage and Sorting LEGO

    Wow. I didn't think of that. Currently our lego pieces are in an ever consistent mess (2 year old on the loose) and sorely need better organizing, so I've been dreaming of super organising... but is that perhaps a bad idea? If you could, as you said, do it all over again, what would you do?