Last week we were thrilled to have a favorite young guest make a morning visit. Our sweet-tempered guest is about 6 months younger than Ranger, so they're both making the transition from parallel to interactive play.
Before our guest's arrival, some of Ranger's most beloved objects were placed in his room to prevent crises in sharing. We tend to play only in the public areas of the house to prevent triggering his sometimes territorial behavior.
He and our guest had a lovely time playing together with Colorforms on the fridge. The big blank space gave them lots of freedom and it was really sweet to hear them identifying shapes and colors to each other.
The big hit of the morning though had to be PAINTING (it even outranked Cheerios). A few months ago I lucked across an unopened Buddah Board at a local thrift shop (50 cents, normally ~$22). It's simple, reusable paint with water surface is great for two toddlers to share and it dries fast enough that there's always some white space available for painting.
They had a great time painting, and I loved watching them in this charming new age of (periodic) cooperation.