The beauty of a cardboard box

We love cardboard boxes. They have to be big though. We have no time for the little ones. They just take up space in the recycling bin.

It’s the large cardboard boxes that are beautiful. Every month or so, a delivery driver rings the doorbell with another big box in his arms. He leaves it in the hall. Then the fun begins.

After I’ve taken out the nappies, the box is Milin’s. The games follow a similar pattern each time. Milin helps me to cut through any remaining tape. I use scissors but he uses a spare set of keys because he’s seen his father do it this way. Then the box is usually positioned in the middle of the lounge.


It’s a hiding place. With the flaps closed – no-one knows were the little mister is. But when they open, out he jumps. Surprise! (He’s really good at jumping now, by the way.)

He sometimes puts a little cushion inside the box so he’s more comfy. He drives his toy cars in and takes books in with him too. It’s his “house”. Sometimes when we close the door he’s scared of the dark. So we open the flaps and he’s happy again and we’re let into play in his house too.

The beauty of the box is that it can be as simple or as complicated as you want. Sometimes we don’t even tear off the flaps. The box as it is is plenty of fun. We don’t need to do anything to it and it’s already a toy with endless possibilities. At other times, the box is transformed into more of a house, with windows and a door and a roof and a chimney and a garden with pink flowers in it.


When it’s raining outside, the cardboard box is the game that keeps giving. It sets off something in the little mister’s imagination. It prompts a new word or reminds him of a previously forgotten toy that suddenly must be in his “house”.

It’s not a fancy, expensive toy – but it makes Milin happy. And when the cardboard starts to give way or we want to upgrade to a “house” more decorative, we put the existing model in the bin, get on Pintrest for ideas, and wait for the inevitable ring of the delivery man.

12 Comments on The beauty of a cardboard box

  1. Winding road
    October 23, 2013 at 3:17 am (4 years ago)

    Cardboard boxes are the best! I think kids are more interested in the box than the toy, as a general rule. My husband builds cardboard box cities, hotels, and ships in our playroom. He drives to a refrigerator store to get the really big ones, he should’ve been a preschool teacher πŸ˜‰

  2. Genevieve
    October 23, 2013 at 5:01 am (4 years ago)

    This so reminded me of some of the joys of my childhood and what we did with the refrigerator box. Next time we have a huge box I will have to do this with my kiddos to create those loving memories.

  3. Mark
    October 23, 2013 at 9:21 am (4 years ago)

    Love a cardboard box!

    I refused to throw the washing machine box away much to the annoyance of my other half.

    “There’s a hundred things we could do with that!” I said.

    So began the challenge, we agreed on 50.

    I’m up to 39 … I won’t be beaten …

    • Mummy Says
      October 23, 2013 at 9:29 am (4 years ago)

      Love it! You should write a blog post with all 50 – we’d love them too I’m sure πŸ™‚

  4. thereadingresidence
    October 23, 2013 at 10:24 am (4 years ago)

    I do like that house – very pretty! We’ve a cardboard box in play right now here, and it just never gets old, does it? Lovely to see what they come up with each time πŸ™‚

    • Mummy Says
      October 24, 2013 at 7:43 am (4 years ago)

      I can’t wait to see Milin get older and come up with more creative ideas of his own. I’m sure there will be many! x

  5. aviets
    October 23, 2013 at 12:28 pm (4 years ago)

    Fun, fun, fun. My 18-year-old son still occasionally builds a “fort”out of blankets. So glad he hasn’t lost all of his child-like tendencies! -Amy

    • Mummy Says
      October 24, 2013 at 7:43 am (4 years ago)

      That’s fantastic! I hope Milin is the same at 18. I have a feeling he might be. His father still is and he’s much older than that! x

  6. Iona@ Redpeffer
    October 23, 2013 at 2:59 pm (4 years ago)

    I do like the house-who needs expensive toys when you can have a cardboard box. I use keys to open boxes too! My son enjoys houses and hiding-he’s especially fond of den building. Great isn’t it.

    • Mummy Says
      October 24, 2013 at 7:42 am (4 years ago)

      It’s lucky we get so many nappies delivered in huge boxes! Endless amounts of fun….

  7. Bismah
    November 2, 2013 at 11:28 am (4 years ago)

    Our little guy loves any type of packaging especially cardboard boxes. I am sure he plays more with empty cartons and plastic containers than he does any of his toys.
    You have a lovely blog! Stopping by from the “Weekend Blog Hop”. Following you on Bloglovin, Twitter, and Facebook.
    Have a great weekend πŸ™‚


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