My daughter is 19 months old. She has a quite a few toys, some of which are pretty cool – such as a rocking eelphant and a stuffed dog that can sing a bunch of songs (incredibly, the dog is still on it original battery, in spite of the fact that it is constantly turning itself on). Most of the time, however, she will eschew these toys in favor of her favorite non-toy items.

Jungle gym daddy

Whenever I am lying of the floor, she loves to crawl across my legs repeatedly. Sometimes she will just lay with her torso across my legs. She’s perfectly content to stay in that position until daddy’s legs fall asleep – or even longer.

Paper

She also likes paper. I don’t just mean wrapping paper or other colored papers. She also loves plain white printer paper. We can’t even leave paper loaded in the printer, because she’ll take it out and try to play with it.

Dinner box

My daughter eats these little Gerber dinners in a box. They are essentially a miniaturized TV dinner. She absolutely loves playing with the little box the meals come in.

Coasters

We have coasters on the end tables. Well, we try to have coasters on the end tables. We have little fabric coasters and the thirstystone coasters – she loves all of them.

Remote control

We try to keep the remote control out of her reach, but if it gets left too far toward the front of the end table, she’ll notice within seconds and grab it in an effort to change the channel to something better.

Anything related to phones

She’ll leave the cordless phone alone for long stretches, and then suddenly will be grabbing at it constantly until we put it out of her reach. She had attempted to dial a few times, but has not yet successfully completed a call.

She also loves to get into the phones books – particular the big yellow pages. The handful of takeout menus near the phone books are even greater prize.

Water bottles

Hey, you can see through them, and they make cool noises when you hit stuff with them. What’s not to like?

It’s a cliché, but I sometimes wonder why we even bother to buy the toys. She would definitely be happier with the boxes.

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Kosmo is the founder of The Soap Boxers and writes on a variety of topics. Many of his short stories have been collected into Kindle books.

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