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    Dec 20, 2017

    15 Toys That Will Make Parents Think, "Why Did I Try So Damn Hard?"

    Say "Bye, Felicia" to L.O.L. Surprise, Hatchimals, and all the other toys you can't find.

    1. Refrigerator

    This is a pricey item, and no, your kid won’t care one bit about the actual refrigerator. But the box it came in? That, my friends, is a timeless kids' fave your child will go crazy over and make into a fort, tunnel, boat on the ocean…who knows what else!

    2. Boxes, in general

    These aren’t as sturdy as the legendary refrigerator box, but they are LOT more affordable. Kids will draw on them, use them to make robot costumes, even carry their pets around in them. (Parents, don’t let your kids do that last one.)

    3. Dog toys

    The dog toy your kid will REALLY want is the one your dog has already imprinted on. With that said, it’s impossible to go to the pet store without your kid squeeing over the dog toys and saying, “Can I get one?” So, next time your kid wants a new toy take them to the pet store instead of the toy store — it’ll save you a few bucks!

    4. Toothpaste

    Kids have little to no interest in this for their teeth (you’ll still have to hound them to use the stuff on their toothbrushes). But! Kids WILL want toothpaste to make that slime they leave everywhere around the house.

    5. Couch pillows

    These may be decorative to you, but to kids they can be used to build forts, throw like a Frisbee, and smack their siblings, cousins and friends with (and then use as a shield to protect against return attacks)!

    6. Wrapping paper

    Will kids have use for the wrapping paper? Probably not. But the cardboard tube the paper comes rolled around will get played with more than the hottest toy of the season. It’s a sword! A lightsaber! A periscope! A tunnel to send action figures sliding down! Impressive, really.

    7. Sticks

    C12 / Getty Images

    Sticks, like cardboard tubes, can be used as swords and lightsabers, but they come with an element of danger kids that makes them a lot more exciting. Every parental cry of “Get rid of that stick! You’ll put your eye out!” only entices them to play with sticks even more.

    8. Bugs

    Kids love these low-cost, easy-to-find toys, or as they call them, “pets.” Worms, roly polies, ants, beetles — these and more will likely end up in a shoe box in your kid’s room, at least until they crawl out, that is.

    Psst, parents: Instead of fighting it, get your kid a Critter Case so you don’t wake up with an escaped beetle crawling across your nose.

    9. Dead bugs

    Nastya81 / Getty Images

    Kids are smarter than us, in their own gross little way. They think, Why pay good money for plastic bugs that don't move at the toy store when I can find real dead ones in the backyard? Blech, shudder…but they have a point.

    Psst, parents #2: If you don’t want to eternally be trying not to retch as you pick up dead bugs in your kid’s room, try getting them an insect display case.

    10. Rocks

    Nuli_k / Getty Images

    Yeah, you could drop money on a pet rock, or a fancy quartz rock, but that rock in the backyard is the real winner in your kid’s eyes.

    Tip to parents: If you put one of your kid's rocks back outside, remember where when they inevitably cry, “Where’s my rock! Where’d my favorite rock go!”

    11. Scotch tape

    You know why the roll is always empty when you desperately need it? It’s because your kid has liberally unspooled it to tape up their nose like a pig, tape their finger tips to be long and pointy, hang stuff on walls, or to get craft-crazy.

    12. Water

    Giulio Fornasar / Getty Images

    Kids will flood the sink to let their Barbies go swimming (and leave puddles on the floor in the process), and carry water around the house in large cups for who knows what reason (spilling even more water on the floor). If you go a day without yelling, “Turn off the faucet!” count yourself lucky.

    13. Snow

    Xixinxing / Getty Images

    As cool as water is, it becomes infinitely cooler in its frozen form. Put a caveman's kid together with a 2017 kid from Park Slope, and if there’s snow around, they’ll be yucking it up together and tossing snowballs. Now that is a toy that belongs in the National Toy Hall of Fame.

    14. Dirt

    Vpopovic / Getty Images

    A kid's favorite place to keep this very old-school toy is under their nails, but their face is a close second. Seeing your kid so dirty is no parent’s idea of fun, but at least some say playing in dirt helps them develop their immune system.

    15. Toilet paper

    Hin255 / Getty Images

    Most of the joy comes from unspooling it, but like a Tootsie Pop has a treat at its center, toilet paper has a fun cardboard roll at its center. And hey, if you feel like playing along, you can find lots of toilet paper roll crafts on Pinterest your kids would love to try.

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