Author Topic: Toys that aren't toys  (Read 1687 times)

meerkat

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Toys that aren't toys
« on: November 08, 2018, 01:41:27 PM »
There's the old joke that if you get a fancy toy your kid would rather play with the packaging. What kind of things have you been amused to see your kid playing with that weren't meant to be toys?

In our house:
Empty diaper/pull ups boxes stacked up and knocked down or else built into a "wall" with a "window" to peek a boo through.
Various small kitchen things that we don't use because they're small (small pot that's an actual cooking pot, wooden spoon, etc.)
Pruners, with supervision obviously. He doesn't know how they actually work so the safety is on and he just holds it up to the shrubs

reeshau

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2018, 02:31:39 PM »
My son loves to collect the leftover tickets from the transit stations in our city.  It has a lot of trappings of baseball cards or any collectible:  he looks to collect them from each station we go to, so he is excited to go to new stations.  And while most tickets are simply receipts from people recharging their transit cards (these are the "commons") he sometimes finds a "single" or "double," which means someone left their actual ticket in the machine!  He probably has 100 or more, and has not lost excitement for the hobby.

He also occasionally finds some spare change, which we target for giving as found money.

CNM

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2018, 02:46:50 PM »
My kid loves art projects way more than any toy he has.  This goes beyond crayons and paper.  He will collect things like rocks to make into little rock people (usually using a glue gun) or unusually shaped disposable items, like those cone-shaped cups used for water coolers or small paper plates, or neat wrapping paper or ribbons, or any other random item.

BAM

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2018, 09:19:50 AM »
Boxes, of course. Ribbons, string, sticks, rocks, leaves. Almost anything in nature actually - seed pods, flowers, shells. Leftover pieces of wood. Paper. Tape. Dowels - make them into swords and light sabers when they are older.

My older kids make mashoonga's out of PVC, pool noodles and duct tape.
Most of my kids have asked for duct tape in their stockings for years. They've made sheaths for swords, belts, shoes, jackets/vests, etc out of it.

GuitarStv

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2018, 09:29:28 AM »
Snails, ants, and bugs in general.  My son finds them and then tries to make friends by bringing them different things to eat.

katsiki

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2018, 09:45:23 AM »
Ditches and canals

I'm a red panda

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2018, 09:56:24 AM »
Nothing is as good as a dog bone.

littleweedontheprairie

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2018, 07:37:30 PM »
Of course, boxes. Any old container too.
Any kitchen utensil they are allowed to have (so not the knives or grater)- the salad spinner is a favorite. They put toys in it and spin, and it becomes a rocket, a magic washing machine, a time explorer, etc.
The toilet plunger. Toilet brushes are out of bounds (I have my limits haha).
The 2 year old found an old socket set that my husband hadn't put back. It's a real crappy one, so we let him play with it. On occasion they get to play with my tape measure and chalk line (apparently they make. the best "cranes").
Plumbing odds and ends have been a favorite lately. Any old fittings, pipe scraps, etc.
Keys that we don't use anymore.
Suitcases on wheels (they get pushed around a lot).
Brooms and mops (I always try and have a clean dry sweeper on them, so they clean my floors when they play).
Old gutters pieces and empty toilet paper rolls make great tunnels.
The dog's kennel (rarely used by the dog) has been claimed as a castle, space rocket, fire station, etc.
We live out in the country and our place has a lot of "treasures", ie bones, bugs and rocks but also stuff inherited with the place like metal scraps, broken tools, engine parts, leaky buckets, pieces of baling twine, dilapidated horse harnesses, etc. For us parents it's a bit of a hassle to go through and sort (and a bit nerve wracking sometimes as we try and get to the dangerous stuff before they do). For little boys it's hog heaven.

Plugging Along

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2018, 10:54:38 PM »
My kids loved paint chips from the hardware/paint store.   They would collect them, sort them, then sometimes makes crafts it of them.

nessness

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2018, 10:04:52 PM »
My 4-year-old taped a face to a piece of styrofoam packing material the other day and played with her "robot" all morning.

tthree

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2018, 07:04:11 PM »
My kids loved paint chips from the hardware/paint store.   They would collect them, sort them, then sometimes makes crafts it of them.
My daughter too.  The first time we went to the home improvement store and I told her she could take one home without paying she was gobsmacked, "These are FREE!".  Now every time we go she has to bring home multiples.

AMandM

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2018, 09:19:41 AM »
Bubble wrap!  Fun to wave around and even more fun to stomp on!

jessmess

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2018, 11:02:13 AM »
My kids love my coin collection! Those special edition coins that come out. They can spend hours picking out their favorites :)

BZB

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #13 on: November 25, 2018, 03:11:08 PM »
making elixirs, magic potions, and poisons out of dirt, twigs, water and other stuff collected in glass jars - and then using my label maker to make labels like "drink up!"

Mongoose

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2018, 08:06:02 AM »
We have a paint chip collection too. They are only allowed one each per trip though per household rules. They love those things. It's so...weird...

Dragonswan

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2018, 11:35:43 AM »
Of course, boxes. Any old container too.
Any kitchen utensil they are allowed to have (so not the knives or grater)- the salad spinner is a favorite. They put toys in it and spin, and it becomes a rocket, a magic washing machine, a time explorer, etc.
The toilet plunger. Toilet brushes are out of bounds (I have my limits haha).
The 2 year old found an old socket set that my husband hadn't put back. It's a real crappy one, so we let him play with it. On occasion they get to play with my tape measure and chalk line (apparently they make. the best "cranes").
Plumbing odds and ends have been a favorite lately. Any old fittings, pipe scraps, etc.
Keys that we don't use anymore.
Suitcases on wheels (they get pushed around a lot).
Brooms and mops (I always try and have a clean dry sweeper on them, so they clean my floors when they play).
Old gutters pieces and empty toilet paper rolls make great tunnels.
The dog's kennel (rarely used by the dog) has been claimed as a castle, space rocket, fire station, etc.
We live out in the country and our place has a lot of "treasures", ie bones, bugs and rocks but also stuff inherited with the place like metal scraps, broken tools, engine parts, leaky buckets, pieces of baling twine, dilapidated horse harnesses, etc. For us parents it's a bit of a hassle to go through and sort (and a bit nerve wracking sometimes as we try and get to the dangerous stuff before they do). For little boys it's hog heaven.

Have they had their Tetnus shot?

TrMama

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2018, 01:12:07 PM »
On a long road trip I once handed my then 3yo the extra tampon I keep in my purse. We'd already run through all the interesting toys I packed for the trip and still had many miles to go. She was fascinated by it. The best part was DH's horrified expression and comments ;-)

10 years later, the best toys are still cardboard boxes. They get made into guinea pig mazes and robot costumes. Fabric scraps become clothes for stuffed animals. She uses the sewing machine to make them.

AMandM

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Re: Toys that aren't toys
« Reply #17 on: December 14, 2018, 03:01:03 PM »
On a long road trip I once handed my then 3yo the extra tampon I keep in my purse. We'd already run through all the interesting toys I packed for the trip and still had many miles to go. She was fascinated by it. The best part was DH's horrified expression and comments ;-)

One of my kids, as a toddler, spent a happy afternoon unwrapping and unfolding sanitary napkins and sticking them to the full-length mirror.

Last week our house was the distribution point for 40 boxes of Christmas greenery from the Boy Scouts fundraiser.  Among the detritus were about a dozen cardboard tubes, like the core of paper towels but thicker and larger in diametre. Since then the 2yo and 3yo grandkids have been having a blast with them. The tubes fit over arms to turn a kid into a robot, they can be balanced on each other and knocked down to cries of "Timberrrr!", they can be whacked against each other as either musical instruments or swords, they can be rolled across floors, they can be stacked like firewood, ....