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Give a Kid a Cardboard Box

By Lori Garcia |

Suri Cruise has a $100,000 playhouse. My kid has a cardboard box.  

You think Suri ever took a cardboard box and transformed it into a magical playhouse? Probably not, and with a mini chateau she doesn’t have to. What a shame to think the simple childhood joy of a giant cardboard box may never be hers.

When our dishwasher went to appliance heaven we shelled out for a new one. Mama got clean dishes and my boys had themselves a creative afternoon. Give a toddler a box, scraps of material, markers, glue and some stickers and he’ll prove one man’s trash is a another little man’s playhouse. Cut out a few windows and voila, hours of fun and entertainment! 

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Suri Cruise playhouse and arts and crafts for kids

You see a box...

Now their clubhouse was really small and didn’t have Suri’s security cameras or a staff of nannies but none of that mattered. That cardboard box covered in a rainbow of scribble scrabbles was all theirs. It served as a fort, a hideaway, a home for action figures and stuffed animals, and a place for BooBoo when he was mad.

In time that ramshackle clubhouse took a beating from plenty of abuse and it was a sad day when it came time to recycle their little piece of real estate. I may have been able to huff and puff and blow my kids’ house down while Suri’s is still standing but it’s not about that at all. It’s about the fun and imagination of a simple cardboard box covered in a rainbow of scribble scrabbles.  

What simple materials provide fun and entertainment for your kids?

More creative fun on Toddler Times:

DIY Pull Sleigh for Simple Toddler Fun

Hold on to Summer: Make Your Own Wave Bottle

Watermelon Pops: A Tasty Summer Treat To Make With Your Toddler

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About Lori Garcia


Lori Garcia

Lori Garcia is a writer and mother of two living and loving in Southern California. When she's not fussing with her bangs, you can find her shaking her groove thing on her personal blog, Mommyfriend where she almost never combines true tales of motherhood and mayhem with her degree in child development. Read bio and latest posts → Read Lori's latest posts →

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0 thoughts on “Give a Kid a Cardboard Box

  1. lo says:

    A cardboard box wins every time. There is this old japanese cartoon with a girl who eats some magic candy and is transformed in animals, Lilly’s candies something. It is quite stupid but my girl loved the idea so we eat M&Ms in the afternoon and we pretend to be transformed in various animals and mimic what they do. Granted we are several times transformed in the cat or the rabbit (or the dog, the sheep,the horse) she wants to have but still lots of fun.

  2. Loukia says:

    Love it! Yes, cardboard boxes, bubble wrap, end the most simple of things provide countless hours of entertainment!

  3. Louise says:

    Hi! My kids also love their card board boxes! It’s the best toy ever and really let’s out their creativity.

    Thanks for sharing!


  4. Corine says:

    SO true. There’s a reason that one year {forgetting which} the cardbox was named toy of the year. :)

    There’s actually a GREAT book that we read with my son called “Its not a box”… REALLY cute. I highly recommend.

  5. Mommyfriend says:

    Lo, I love the imagination! Keep up the creativity!

  6. Hopes@Staying Afloat! says:

    I have a framed picture of both my boys playing in a cardboard box after we moved into our home. They loved the box so much it stayed in the living room for a good month after we moved it!

    Cardboard boxes ROCK!

  7. aplaceforthoughts says:

    My little guy loves his cardboard boxes, too. Fun!

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