I was flipping through the lastest Land of Nod catalog last week and I saw a very distressing sight:
It's a card board box. They are selling a card board box in their catalog! Not only are they selling it, but they are selling it for $90! Seriously? Now parents are supposed to buy card board boxes for their children to play in? I thought the whole joke was that you bought an expensive present that was in the box and then the kids liked the free box more. Now you can skip that whole process and just buy an expensive box.
Has no one thought of going to Sears and asking for an old refrigerator box? Kids can make a play house out of that. And paint on it. And make a door. And windows. And it's free. I'm very distressed over this. It's as if parents have given up on being creative and making presents or at least finding cheaper alternatives. I just cannot fathom paying $90 for a card board box.
I do, however, really like the idea of a play house that is completely collapsable. And I will probably be searching for my own free card board box soon so that I can make it for CJ. But I will not be buying her this one.
My tip today is to not be so dependent on retailers and manufacturers. They show us an ad, we think "I must get that item for myself or ____", and then we go out and purchase it. Where is the fun in that? It's so much more rewarding to think through gifts that would bless someone and then actually have a hand in creating it or forming it. Even if you don't make any part of it, just knowing that you haven't given a generic gift is a huge reward. And toys are a real temptation with this. But I don't want my girls growing up having the exact same set of toys that their friends do. When I see something I like, I try to think how I can reproduce it myself to give them something that is personalized and tailored for them. Yes, there is more work involved than if I just went to the store and bought it, but I have a much more satisfying end product (and it's usually cheaper).
Ok - I'm off in search of an empty, free cardboard box for the taking. When I finish, I'll show you my results.