The Best Gift EVER

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Baby in a Box | Photo by Keith WilliamsonIt doesn’t matter how sophisticated the toys are that you buy for children, they will get as much pleasure out of playing in the empty cardboard boxes. ~Keith Williamson

I couldn’t have said it better myself. How adorable is his daughter? This photo of her from his Project 365 cracks me up. That is some serious fun.

This holiday season I dare you, I double-dog dare you, give your child a big cardboard box as a gift.
Join me in a parenting experiment. Let’s  get serious here (ha!) and follow the Scientific Method:

1. Propose a Question: At the end of the day, what will win out? Will your child have spent more time with the toys or the box?

2. Hypothesis: Children will find more pleasure with a simple box.

3. Prediction: I believe children who are eight and younger will gravitate towards the box for a longer period throughout the day.

4. Test:  Will you join me in this parenting experiment? Call your local hardware store, Lowes, or Home Depot and try to score yourself a big box. Refrigerator boxes work best.  Keep the box hidden and bring it out after all the major gift unwrapping has occurred. Put a simple bow on the top & do nothing special. Wait and see if they notice and play with it.

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis | Image: Harper FestivalDoes the thought of giving an empty box feel off to you? Put a small token of love inside it, consider the book, Not a Box by Antoinette Portis (for early readers). It is a simply illustrated tale of all the things a box can be to a child.

The power of imagination makes us infinite. ~John Muir

5. Analysis: Share your results with me, so we can compare notes. Tag me on Facebook or Instagram with photos documenting your holiday experiment.


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Disclaimer: Some links above lead to affiliate networks. Click here to read our full disclosure. Photo Credit: Keith Williamson

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  • Cat

    ok, I SOO need to do this! My kids adore boxes. I need to pick up some and see what wins out, LOL

  • Suzy Homemaker

    I did this for my son’s first Christmas 4 years ago (the box won by a landslide, however the second most played with object at the end of the day was the pile of wrapping paper) and was planning on doing it again for my daughter’s first Christmas this year.

  • Smhorton

    My fondest memory as a child was when I was given a giant delivery box to decorate. I even hung curtains.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tamara-Lewis/1005721715 Tamara Lewis

    What a great idea!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tamara-Lewis/1005721715 Tamara Lewis

    What a great idea!! Another book my kids love is called “Christina Katerina and the Box”. Christina gets a large refrigerator box and oh the things she makes out of it! Such an imaginative story.