8 Toys That I Don’t Want Our Kids to Play With

Not quite a natural disaster, but pretty damn close. Modelling clay gets left for me to clean up every time.

I’m over it. I’m not going to mention brand names but I am not a fan of the toys or art and craft supplies that turn our house from the show home it can be into something resembling the scene you see after a cyclone or tornado has passed through town. It is mostly those non-toxic modelling clays that I have the major problem with, but there are plenty of other things I don’t care for.

I am over those toys that have parts. Maybe not Lego, I could never turn my back on Lego, as we’ve only recently acquired Lego sets and I am using stand-over tactics to make sure that our older child is packing ALL the parts away every single time he plays with them. And hopefully he will become as anal retentive as I was with my Lego carrying out a daily “stock take” to make sure there were no missing parts.

But we have plenty of other toys, games and puzzles that I have to make sure have their parts packed away after the kids have finished with them. Both our boys are very blasé about putting things away and it doesn’t really help that their mother shares this attitude.

So here we are with ten weeks to go before our eldest turns five and 120 days until Christmas and I am already worried about what toys they will get that to me are nothing more than more mess for me to clean up.

We have a few couples we know that are due to have first, second and third babies and as a result I decided to collect up all the toys that are aimed at newborns through to 18 months and put them in a tub. I also started a second tub that has toys that are still within the age bracket of the younger one to play with but that have been neglected and not played with for a while; those toys that seem to be tossed aside while looking for cooler noisier things to play with.

And then there was tub number three. I’m going to call this one The Tub of Lost Souls. In this tub I put parts of the electronic oven and stove that was bought for child number one when he showed signs of wanting to be like Daddy in the kitchen. The stove has been sitting idle in his bedroom for well over a year occasionally being “played with” by means of his little brother opening the oven door and sticking something like a Matchbox car or some other random toy in it. The oven hasn’t been played with as an oven for as long as I can remember.

This tub has the lid of the shape sorter that is missing its shapes. I am sure I have seen the little one walking around with one recently but God knows where he dropped that. Maybe the shapes were part of those toys that went viral around our house recently. This tub also has other shapes that belong to some other sorter that has gone missing. This tub is now the holding cell for Happy Meal toys that have lost hats or other accessories, or toy hats that have lost the person or creature they once lived on. They went in the tub because they deserve to be held in some sort of Purgatory, a place that is not quite Toy Heaven, but they are still safe from Toy Hell.

I am really looking forward to when the boys are old enough to care about their toys. I am looking forward to them having friends with the same taste in toys and therefore keeping their toys in tip top shape so as to be able to have some friendly competition when it comes to who has what toy, and who has the complete set. I was jealous of those friends who had all 92 Star Wars figures, or close to it. They could afford to lose an accessory or two. Me, I had maybe two dozen figures so making sure all the parts were kept together meant that at the very least, if I didn’t have the complete set, I had my set complete.

But until those days, here is a list of toys I do not want our kids to have.

  1. Modelling Clays like Plasticine or Play-Doh
  2. Jig Saw Puzzles or Puzzle Books
  3. Blocks where having the complete set to make designated building or designs is paramount
  4. Shape Sorters
  5. Doll Houses with all their little bits, just like the Peppa Pig set we bought our little one for his second birthday. Here we are just over a month since he got it and all the bits are all over the place.
  6. Textas, Marker Pens, Pencils, Crayons or Chalk
  7. Silly Putty (also the non-silly putty; basically any putty aimed at kids).
  8. Board Games that are not age appropriate, and even some that are that have parts that go missing too easily. And when it comes down to it, it is hard to get a 2-year-old and an almost 5-year-old to play these games right through to the end without them losing their concentration. A more appropriate name would be Bored Games.

I am sure between now, pending fifth birthday and Christmas I will think of more items on my banned list. What toys or games would you like to add to the list?

12 thoughts on “8 Toys That I Don’t Want Our Kids to Play With

  1. It’s funny how my attitude to some of my boys’ toys has completely changed in the last few months since my eldest was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Whereas I was often blase about their non-interest in colouring in, or avoided play doh requests (and the associated cleanup / attempts by my second born to eat the stuff), now I’m trying to set aside time for those activities. Play doh is now tactile play which challenges sensory issues and builds finger strength, colouring in is fine motor skill development and handwriting grip practice, and if he actually played with his brother’s Peppa Pig playset I would fall over (and then do a happy dance!) Lol. That’s not a criticism, by the way, just my reflection on how things have changed for me.

    We’re starting to attempt to dissuade family from buying toys unless it is specifically wanted – at the moment we are trying to focus on outdoor items or increasing sets they already have. I fear that we are being overrun. My youngest turns 1 next month and I have no idea what to get her – can I just shop from our own toy cupboard?

    1. It has just gone 11pm here. I have just spent the last 2 hours packing the dishwasher and then cleaning the lounge room and sweeping throughout the lower floor. The thing is, being a full time working father who cooks dinner for everyone as so as my work day is over, eats dinner and then baths the boys, dresses them for bed and then most nights puts the little one to bed, there’s not a lot of time to actually play with the toys and other things I have to clean up. I wish I could guide them more with the playing with toys but seeing the older one can pick up a piece of plastic and pretend it is something more exciting, I am encouraging his imagination more.

      1. I definitely agree with encouraging them to use their imagination 🙂

        I agree about the evenings being draining; just when you really want to put your feet up the dinner rush hour begins and you are off! My husband and I have found a bit of a balance – he baths the kids and does the bedtime routine while I do the dinner clean up. Once my daughter stops breastfeeding I’ll hopefully add a sweep in as well. But sometimes (like tonight) it is really a case of one foot in front of the other 😦

  2. Okay, I won’t read this and not reply….

    I work more than full time start at 7am finish at 5pm plus travel Monday-Friday, I am on call on scheduled and “surprise” nights (meaning sometimes people call in sick and I have to cover) and i work Saturdays to!(locksmithing isn’t easy hours) so i get life can be stressful, do not take me as some guy who has got it easy. No, no, no. This is not the case.

    my adopted son is 3 soon (I have been his father since he was 2 months old, the biological dad tragically died and my wife is the biological mother)… and yeah sure he makes a little mess… and we spend hours cleaning each and every night.. but really!.. I would never and will never blame my wife that the kids don’t wanna tidy up. “and it doesn’t really help that their mother shares this attitude.”… hell i’m not even gong to blame my son that he doesn’t clean up the toys, if he has had a good day and is in a good mood and has learned something with his toys and added to his childhood being a nice child hood that was easy yet lined with respectfulness.(he still has about a century of his life ahead of him that i am effecting) I am MORE than happy to clean… But! cause he does what he is told! and I do not hit or threaten, I never even get angry at him, I encourage and reward… I ask him to clean up every day (but he sometimes falls asleep before i get home and some days he is sick.. clearly i won’t ask him then)… and i give the choice of a nice treat (little teddies or chocolate biscuits) or a special bribe treat like if you clean up we can go somewhere special (after a huge day of playing where all the toys simply MUST come out and it’s a big daunting job and it’s hard for little people cause big jobs are even bigger!) and of course i will sit and help him.. personally my son will do what he is told I am certain it’s because he gets praise love and attention when he does it with or without asking.. he has every single one of those toys on that list! and i come home to a pretty clean house!(a majority of the time)… its my wife and I’s actions and words that define our sons past present and future! i’m only 21.. I remember being a child.. clearly none of you (those who agree or added to this list) do! I learnt by doing, touching and feeling. I made mistakes and still do I’m not perfect and i can always learn more.. and this IS criticism.. don’t take it hard though, it just means someone else cares that your children have a fun and happy full life too!

    I am not hunting you… your in public view!

    1. Thanks for your comment Jeremy. Sounds like you;re doing a great job. Of course, you do realise that us parents who blog tend to use hyperbole, rhetoric and comedic licensing when writing and none of this stuff is actually banned in our house. Since writing this 11 months ago we have had many a mess to clean up with these things and have had more enjoyable times playing with them.

      And of course we all remember being children and playing with these toys and furthermore, when we get to play with them again we get to revisit all those fantastic childhood memories.

      Thanks once again for your comment and thanks for reading. You points on this discussion are more than welcome.

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