In many ways, the introduction to a toy sand pail and trowel set changed how I looked at the world. I experienced a change in perception about how sand behaves, and experienced new thoughts about actions I could take to change my environment. I explored thinking about the physical world in different ways with different volumes and densities of sand, I played with wet and dry sand, and I began changing the end result by adding toys like action figures or other objects like seashells into the bottom and along the sides of the sand pail to add new designs, features and properties.
I also struggled with learning about how many efforts like sandcastles can change and even disappear due to other factors than my whims. While I could control many changes myself and I enjoyed playfully experimenting, I could not control the water, wind, and other people and pets playing in the same area on the beach. Even determined efforts to build moats or other defenses seemed to only slow or temporarily deter destructive elements seeming to work against my sandcastles, but by this stage in my many visits to the beach I had let go of some inability to cope with the ephemeral nature of time and a busy world shared with others.
While I struggled at first with attachment to environments I helped shape, I began to understand and accept that even dedicated projects can crumble or become damaged. This did not keep me from playing, however.
I know the topic of sandcastle toys have already been covered related to this topic and not just in LCL, but this had a profound impact on my childhood among my other favorite memories.
By David (Empty Bucket at Punta Del Este) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons