Children and toys : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread

What do you folks do about the toys your children play with? What I mean is, I'd like for my children to play with hand made, or wooden, metal, or other good quality toys that inspire creativity. But somehow we get deluged with consumer trash-Mcdonald freebies and other plastic stuff that just gets broken or sits around forever offending the eye with it's garish colors. My kids get all these junky plastic toys out and strew them all over the place. I could just throw them all out, but family and friends keep giving them to us. How do you feel about this? Do you think it harms children to have too many toys?

-- Rebekah (, April 11, 2001


Well Rebebkah, I don't have children, but I have scads of nieces and nephews! I think there is entirely too mcuh of everything anymore, but as pertains to your NEED to have some toys, but if they don't even care for them because they have so many, then I would cut wayyyyyyy back. I still have my Timmy the teddy and I won't let go of him!

-- Dreen (, April 11, 2001.

Rebekah, you might try boxing up some of the toys and just not mentioning it to your children. If they ask a couple of times about a specific toy, then unpack that one. Otherwise, you could either just wait a couple of months and put those toys back out and pack up different ones, or else give them to charity or have a garage sale when the children aren't there. Some things are long time favorites, but more of the plastic stuff they get is just that to them....stuff.

My boys always got the most play value out of the old, simple toys like big metal trucks, a wagon, a ball, etc.

-- Green (, April 11, 2001.

Green's suggestion works!! I did that with my daughter. Trouble was, we lived with my folks for an entirely toooooo long period of time.

I talked to everyone that felt it was their duty to shower my daughter with gifts... Most listened to me, my parents, of course, didn't.

Try talking to the folks that bring all this stuff. Explain why you would prefer, if not stopping it, then different 'types' of toys.

My daughter found much more pleasure pounding dents into my cooking pots than playing with all that plastic... She also was outside with me from very early (as I am sure you do, too!) helping plant gardens, pick flowers, going for walks, etc etc. She just didn't have time for all the foolishness.

-- Sue Diederich (, April 12, 2001.

Hi Rebekah, great question. I also am of the thinking that "less is better." We seldom buy toys and yet still end up with too many. I have no problem boxing them up and donating them, seems I do this several times a year (and truly we do not "buy" toys). We want our children to have the privlege of "awe", when they do recieve a gift or toy from someone. Thankfulness comes to mind also.

Plus the imagination is a terrible thing to waste. We love watching them in action...the things they come up with, with nothing more than imagination, sticks, various clothing items, ect...

When we go to other people's homes and see the amount of "entertainment" items parent's have given their children, I almost feel sorry for the kids. What do they have to "anticipate?" Love, food, shelter, respect, care.....these are the things we provide in abundance to our children. Toys, videos, TV, games, ect.... NAH. God Bless!

-- Wendy@GraceAcres (, April 13, 2001.

My kids had too much stuff, mostly from yardsales. My grandkids have too much, and their families don't have much money. My grandkids have been visiting these last 3 weeks and having the time of their lives outside. At home, they don't spend much time outside at home, they have to watch videos. It's like outside is foreign to them

The 5 year old has been here 2 weeks and hasn't watch any videos except Toy Story. He's been playing with markers, marbles, balloons and cards. He plays mostly outside, grandma gets to play bubbles, too:~}.

I think kids are happiest with a big box, bubbles, plastic ball and bat and cats to pick up:~}. A doll, family games, things to build and few toys for the little ones.

-- Cindy (SE In) (, April 13, 2001.

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