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Sea Lion ToyTake a good look at this picture. Isn’t this toy just adorable? it’s a soft furry little sea lion, a present from a friend who brought it back from her travels.

It’s been sitting on my desk for ages and I loved the way stress was fading away as I was stroking its fur. Little Eric was fascinated with the little sea lion as well – more than anything else on my desk.

As any other little boy, Eric loves going through things on my desk. They all are magical to him and anything he gets to touch makes him feel so very proud of himself. All the pens and pencils, my iPod, my laptop, my calculator, these are attributes of the grown-ups – which makes them even more inviting and appealing. And when our kids find a toy that their mom or dad like – it draws their little hands like a magnet.

Eric fell in love with my little sea lion. He was stroking him every time he was coming in to say “nighty-night”, which eventually became a ritual. He wouldn’t go to bed without touching the “mouse” first – he thought that this little grey furry thing was a mouse. Well, there was some resemblance.

Once day he insisted on taking the “mouse” to the bed. To avoid a grand scandal I played along and he went to bed with the mouse. In the morning, when I was making his bed, to my surprise (at first) and horror I found a pin in his bed. I was at loss as to how this happened. I turned his whole bed around and found the “mouse”. It looked a bit strange to me when I saw it.

Something was missing.Sea lion with pin for nose The nose… it somehow lost the nose and the eyes… and then it hit me – the pin I found was one of the eyes. I searched and found the other eye = pin in Eric’s bed.

Dumb luck. Thank God for dumb luck, that saves fools like myself. What was I thinking? I gave my child an adult toy, without giving it a second thought. The toy had pins for eyes and my child could have been hurt in his sleep. I don’t even want to imagine what he could have done with those pins.

I will just say that I will never, ever, in a million years, give my boy a toy that wasn’t made for kids his age. No matter how he screams or asks for it.

Have you ever given your child a toy, only to regret it later?