Elijah loves videos! He is particularly fond of Blue's Clues, The Wiggles and one particular episode of Barney. His favorite activity with the videos is watching them. He is fully capable of finding a video, putting it into the TV/VCR, stopping, rewinding, fast-forwarding and ejecting videos. His second favorite activity (or perhaps a frustrating by-product of his favorite) is pulling the videos off the shelf, out of their cases and onto the floor.
Another of Elijah's favorite activities is pulling toys out of the toy bin and pushing them into the space under the piano keyboard. If we want to play the piano at our house, we first have to kick all of the toys out of the way (or, if we're really energetic, put them back into the toy bins). The other day I spent 20 minutes putting all of the toys back into their bins. Then, while I was making lunch, Elijah emptied all of the toys right back under the piano.
And finally, Elijah has taken to throwing his plate of food across the kitchen when he doesn't like something or is finished eating. This frustrates Al even more than it does me (wasting food is worse than making a mess to him).
Some days I am incredibly frustrated by Elijah's seeming to desire to make large messes. I am not fond of putting 30 videos back into their cases and onto the shelves and am even less fond of sorting toys into bins and wiping spaghetti sauce off the floor. And doing any of these two or three times a day can be close to torture. On other days I am too preoccupied to take much notice. I end up cleaning the messes either way (which is not to say that Al doesn't clean up messes too, just that I clean up the messes Elijah makes while I'm watching him).
On good days, I am able to focus on Elijah enough so that he is occupied with more useful tasks like putting together puzzles, identifying words and objects or pretending to cook. I wish I had the time and energy to focus on Elijah all of the time, but that simply isn't possible. There are meals to cook, floors to clean and other people in my family who need me. Actually, I'm thankful that Elijah is able to play on his own and doesn't demand constant attention. Now, if I can just encourage him to clean up the house instead of making messes... hmmm, I suspect that won't be happening any time soon though.