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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Top this!

Robbie is a kid of happy extremes. When he loves something, he REALLY loves it. His first obsession was dinosaurs. From the time he was about 2 years old until he was around 6, he could not get enough dinosaurs. He knew their long and complicated names, which ones were meat eaters and which ones preferred leafy greens.

He still likes dinos, but not at the level of obsession. The next object of his heart's desire was Legos. He could spend hours building Legos. Truthfully, I think that will bring him joy for a lifetime (if his dad is any indication).

But Robbie's latest obsession is not dinosaurs or Legos. It's not drawing or painting, though both are certainly a big part of his waking hours. It's not riding his bike. Nope, what Robbie is REALLY into these days is BOX TOPS.

These things:

It started because of a box tops collection contest at school. I didn't realize there was a contest going on until I came home and found little rectangles cut out of a few boxes of cereal in the pantry. Then I noticed Robbie going through the pantry and the fridge, inspecting every box and bottle, occasionally yelling out "BOX TOPS!"

Of course, Mike then (because he's a nicer parent than I am) made sure to shop for box-top-bearing food the next time he was at the grocery store. Robbie has a baggie at home with 6 or 7 box tops in it, waiting to be turned in to his teacher after Spring Break.

But he hit the motherload -- make that grandmotherload -- when we came to my parents' house for a visit yesterday. While Annie and Charlie went with my mom and dad to a volleyball game, Robbie and I headed back to their house for a little R&R. I asked him what he wanted for dinner. He said, "Cereal," and turned to open the pantry. 

"BOX TOPS! BOX TOPS!" It turns out that Grandma's pantry was well-stocked with box tops. I told him he had to wait until Grandma came home so he could ask her if he could cut out the box tops from packages of food that were still waiting to be eaten. 

When I told my mom about Robbie's discovery, she said "Oh, I have a whole box of box tops I've been collecting just because." So this morning, Grandma rocked Robbie's world when she pulled out the box o' box tops and told him he could have them. 

Of course, when Grandma removes a box top, she does what most sane people do and just tears it out loosely. Robbie, however, is quite particular about the shape of his box tops. God bless my mom who sat there with Robbie and cut each box top into a perfect rectangle. They put all the box tops into a baggie and sealed it up for the trip home.

Wanting to make sure to leave no box unturned, Robbie hunted through the fridge and the lazy Susan and turned up at least three more box tops Grandma somehow missed. We sorted the box tops into piles of 10 and counted Robbie's bounty. 133 box tops! 

He can't wait to take them to school on Monday. Thanks Grandma!



Ellen aka Ellie said...

I am with Robbie on this!

I teach fourth grade in a school collects Box Tops, and they do add up. My student council trims them twice a year for the mom who's in charge of collecting them, and they all turn into Robbies--they don't want to stop.

I'm a ripper, but my husband is a precise cutter.

When I taught fifth grade, we had a science unit for which we needed cereal box cardboard. I was always dismayed at the number of boxes that came in with Box Tops still attached, so you can bet I tore them off. It made me twitchy to think of all the boxes recycled at those homes with Box Tops attached.

The mom who used to be in charge drove her walking buddies crazy, she would stop on recycling day and tear off Tops from the boxes in people's bins!

They add up.

Robbie is not alone. Robbie rocks!

Anonymous said...

Funny that you should post this now. I was not a collector of box tops and didn't even realize that they existed until...a trip to the dentist earlier this week. Someone brought in a baggie full to give to the hygienist cleaning my teeth. The hygienist explained the significance and I was enlightened.

And, as often happens, the topic immediately came up again - in your blog. Coincidences astound constantly. I am now a collector for my grandkids.

Thanks for the reminder.


Rachel said...

So funnie! I am Robbie twin! :) I collected them long before I even had a kid, and my niece has been hitting me up for them... love it!