Apart from one or two special items that my kids are really into, we actually don't get a lot of play out of our toys. It seems that kids can make a game out of anything, and if I can allow them to be occupied with other "things" and encourage their imagination and a bigger sense of "play" then I go for it. (As long as the mess is not too extravagant! See this bean experiment here...)
So for anyone wondering what my kids get up to when their toys just aren't hitting the spot, here are a few examples...
1. Let's use the chairs and stools to make a jail in the kitchen!
2. Mmmmm! Cinnamon and Sugar! Seriously, she was occupied with this little bowl for at least 20 minutes, and didn't even make too much of a mess. Nor did she eat all of it.
3. Oooh! Plastic containers! Admittedly this one didn't last long before he was into a "cooking" adventure involving juice, milk, flour, mustard, basil, nutmeg and parmesan.... I should have gotten a picture of that "cake" when it was done; Lucas and Elena actually tried eating it. Might have to guide the cooking a little more next time so it ends up somewhat edible.
4. Yay! Boxes to rearrange!
5. Let's play TV! On the air, a special episode of the Backyardigans, for about 5 minutes before they rearranged everything into an obstacle course.
Looking through these, it appears my kids spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Other things we do usually involve moving furniture in the living room to create "houses"or obstacle courses. Ok, who am I kidding, with four kids in our small-ish house and the baby paraphernalia, our house IS an obstacle course!
What do your kids like to play with?