Two days before the kids and I flew to Germany I was finalizing some simple activities for my them to do while we were on the airplane. This trip marks the sixth international trip I have taken with at least one child. From prior successes and failures, I have learned that cheap and never-seen-before toys is the key on the plane with kids.
As I was making the bed and getting dressed, I realized it was uncannily quiet out in the kitchen where the kids were. I tiptoed down the hallway to peak, expecting some sort of mess. What I found was the two of them sharing a chair and happily peeling crayons.
For a minute I considered packing extra crayons to peel on the plane, but as it goes with kids, this would be so yesterday’s interest-of-the-moment. Because that’s the annoying thing with kids this age, they constantly need new things to entertain them.
Enter the dollar section at Target.
I remembered that about a week ago, they each begged for a pack of cheap Legos from there. I flatly denied both of them.
“We have the nice Legos at home,” I said as I forbade the knock-offs.
But next I remembered that, through learned experience, kids react even more positively after being told no and then later receiving a yes.
I made an emergency trip to Target with $2 on the budget.
The great thing about dollar toys is, that as a parent, you don’t care if they get broken or lost. Once they serve their purpose they go in the trash, possibly the best part. Of course, as Murphy’s Law goes, they coveted these “cheap, forbidden” toys like nobody’s business and didn’t lose a single one on the plane.
Now that’s $2 well spent.
When I was younger I loved playing with my Lite-Brite. Although more than $1 and something ill-suited for an airplane, I took care of it and all those tiny plastic pegs. In fact, I recently recovered it from The Shrine and hope to introduce it to my kids when they have longer attention spans.
Clearly, we all have an affinity for colorful toys.
Editor’s note: Today’s post was written in response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt as an assignment for Blogging 101.