Here's a little bead lacing toy I put together for Ellen:
All I did was buy some large wooden beads and some shoelaces and make a little bag to keep them in. I thought I'd post it as a cheap & simple gift idea. Tie a bead onto the end of each lace to keep the others from sliding off.
Of course, these beads would be too small for a baby still in the choking hazard stage. And of course any toy with loose, small parts is fatally flawed, but we'll see how it goes. I thought putting the clear window in the bag might make putting the beads back in more appealing. Yeah, wish me luck with that one.
So far, Adam and Zuzu are more interested in it than Ellen. Adam spent a long time carefully filling his whole shoelace, asked me to tie it for him, and proudly marched out to show off his new necklace around the neighborhood.
I wish my camera handled lower-light conditions better. For these pictures, auto mode turned on the flash, which looks like this:
The focus is sharp enough, but the lighting is totally unnatural. So I always wind up turning the flash off. And then I get images like this:
Now the lighting looks much better -- just like it really did in the room -- but the shutter has to stay open so long to collect enough light that the subjects come out blurry. This is the clearest one I could get out of dozens I tried with the flash off:
So I set it back to auto and let the flash do its thing:
Not bad, but still the lighting looks so different from what my eye sees. So, let's turn the flash off again . . .
And so on, ad nauseum.
Somebody should design a camera that interfaces with my eyeballs. I've got some sweet lenses in there. You should see how well my eyeballs handle all kinds of light conditions.