If you're a parent, you've no doubt experienced the excitement of buying your child the PERFECT gift. You bring it home and wrap it ever so beautifully, all the while imagining the joy you will be bringing to his little face when he opens this amazing expression of your love for him. It hardly seems fair to all the other gifts that will be so carelessly tossed aside as they will surely pale in comparison to your gift. Finally, the moment arrives, your child tears open the present, and... all he cares about is the box it came in.
We've recently had a similar experience here at our house. At our PTA Valentine's party, my son exchanged Valentines with all of his friends. One of the Valentines could be MAGICALLY transformed into a football goal post and football simply by tearing along the perforation and folding the pieces. As you can imagine, this Valentine was a HUGE hit at our house! He actually sat still for longer than 5 minutes to play with it. The other Valentines paled in comparison to the football Valentine.
Unfortunately, the goal post did not survive his one year old sister. My husband and I didn't have the heart to tell our son that his sister single-handedly destroyed his new, favorite toy. I instead suggested that we make a new one since we "lost" the old one.
We took a Diet Coke box from the recycle pile and simply cut out the new goal post, folding it to stand upright.
In case you didn't play this game in elementary school (like me), I'm including pictures of how to make the football. Fortunately our football survived but you could make your own out of the same box you use for the goal post. Simply start with a rectangle with one corner clipped...
...and then begin folding your "football", one triangle at a time...
...then fold the last triangle (with the clipped corner) to tuck it into itself, forming your triangular "football".
And here you have your finished "football." You could even get the kids involved to decorate their own football and goal post.
I am happy report that it's been 10 days since the Valentine's Party and my son still LOVES to play "football" with his FREE football game. My husband has even had a good time teaching him to "flick" the football through the goal post.
Sometimes the best toys don't cost a lot of money or require batteries. Sometimes the best toys are the ones you make yourself and require you to use your imaginations!