The Beauty Of Unremarkable Things

What Is It With Small Children And Toilet Paper?

“The Beauty Of Unremarkable Things”

What do cheese, toilet paper, keys and shoes all have in common?

They are all unremarkable. But isn’t it amazing how many truly unremarkable things can entertain, fascinate & distract small humans for extended periods of time?

Although we as adults can’t always comprehend the fascination, maybe it’s because not all of these things are always on show and in fact, many might normally be off limits completely for small people, so by offering them you’ll be breaking several house rules and most likely undoing some previous good discipline work. Due to this, there are some associated risks.

Here’s a small selection of unremarkable items that my children suddenly become obsessed with the second they catch sight of them. Sometimes I purposely bring them into play when I just need to get sh*t done or I quite simply want to be left the hell alone!

What Is It With Small Children And….

It’s cheese, what’s not to like right? But my daughter’s favourite, Cheese Strips, have the added benefit of coming in strips (does what it says on the tin), that can be pulled apart. She takes each strip off one at a time and eats them individually. It takes bloody ages, it’s brilliant!!! I can drink a whole cup of tea, sometimes I’ll even go back for another.
*For increased impact add a cracker, so plain, so simple but they’re like a child’s version of catnip. It’ll be like all their Christmas’s have come at once.
Risk Factor – cracker crumbs! You’ll be finding them for days.

….Keys & Remote Control’s?
I’m grouping these together as the benefits are all aligned. Now these are ours, not for them. They perform important jobs and are a massive pain in the arse to mend or replace. Oh…..but how they are coveted by small people. What is it with that? And the thing that gets me the most about keys and remotes is that we’ll buy them their own keys (plastic of course), give them an old remote or even some old real keys. But they know, don’t they? They know they’re not the ‘actual ones’. How is this possible? They can’t string two words together or wipe their own arse’s but they know immediately if you’ve tried to fool them with bogus technology!
Risk Factor – if you do give in and give them the ‘actual ones’ you may never be able to lock the front door again or change TV channel….eh

….Toilet Paper?
Again, why do small people love toilet roll so much? I think it’s the paper dangling there above their heads, isn’t it? They must feel like it’s teasing them. Waving it’s paper loveliness right in their faces. With its potential to be torn so easily into tiny little pieces, it’s quite understandably just too tempting not to reach up and grab. And grab some more…..and a little more. Until yes you have your own makeshift Andrex Puppy.
*Has the potential to amuse for long periods. Just imagine all the things you could get done?
Risk Factor – messy but it is only paper. If they eat some they’ll be fine (I guess?).

One for little-little people. My 1-year-old is obsessed with shoes. I’m sure this will pass *please God*. So for a little time out I just sit him in front of a shoe rack. It’s genius. Just seeing his face light up. Beautiful.
Risk Factor – based on the fact that the 1-year-old likes to ‘post’ things in a variety of inventive places, there is the potential risk of never pairing up some shoes again. Hey ho….

….A Bucket Of Water?
My son was recently introduced to ‘the bucket of water’ on a sunny day in the garden. Hours and I mean hours of entertainment. Splash a ball in….take ball out….throw ball….collect ball….splash ball in……repeat.
*Requires supervision (just 1 eye will do) & good weather.
Risk Factor – possible drowning, so don’t fall asleep during your extended period of relaxation. And obviously the child will end up very soggy, but it’ll be well worth it.

Unremarkable Things

Get these out and you might as well don a long robe and silly hat because congratulations, you’ve just become The Pied Piper. Small children will follow you everywhere. So simple these floaty, transparent globes of joy. And the ‘untouchableness’ only seems to spur them on.
Risk Factor – don’t let them hold the bubble mixture. You know how that ends right?

I am making light of these things, as I always do, but actually whilst writing this, I have found myself smiling at just how wonderful it is that young children are fascinated by so many insignificant things.

For the vast majority of my son’s life, he has not needed shoes. But all the big people around him wear them and in fact, these people have several pairs each. That’s a lot of different shoes that don’t belong to him, no wonder he’s so interested.

We should perhaps every now and then try to view the world a bit more like our children do.

Let’s be more fascinated, let’s fully embrace the bubbles, the water and the cheese. In fact, let’s maybe do all three of those at once!

I am massively guilty of non-embracing. Life is so busy and complicated, I’m always thinking about the time it’ll take me to clear up and forgetting about the potential joy that will come before. Re-rolling a roll of toilet paper is such a phaff and it will never fit back on the holder. But. Maybe once in a while, we should just let them do it and think about the mess later?


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The random & chaotic thoughts of a working Mum. I write stories about life as a working Mum, emotion provoking tales, opinion & humour, that I hope people can relate to. A Photographer & advocate of general silliness. Come and join the journey....

40 thoughts on “What Is It With Small Children And Toilet Paper?”

  1. I can’t agree more with this posted, I nodded along smiling at every post. We have a spare remote and set of keys for our little one at the moment, it get’s confusing when you can’t understand why the channel isn’t changing. #coolmumclub

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fantastically true. What is it with toilet roll? And if I may please add “The Toilet Brush”. Why is there a deep founded need in my littlest one to lick it? I spend most of my shower time leaping out of said shower with shampoo in my eyes trying to rip it out of his tiny grasp before he tastes it! Bleuggghh. I totally agree though, if only we all stayed so easily entertained! x #coolmumclub

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  3. My kids have been fascinated by all of these at one point or another, but bubbles are something they don’t seem to outgrow. My 3 year old doesn’t even blow the bubbles anymore he just dumps them out #coolmumclub

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes!! To all of these. My children (4 and almost 7) have lived off of cheese and squeeze applesauce this summer. We have 4 tv’s and currently only one remote that works or has batteries due to….you guessed it..the kids. Loved it!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love the fascination with the unremarkable; I miss it because my kids are older now and the “doing” part of the unremarkableness has been replaced with talking (and talking, talking, talking) about them. ; )

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Haha I love when I read a post and I’m just nodding the whole way through. This is one of those posts! So so true – SB is obsessed with all of the above (especially toilet paper and keys… why am I spending a fortune on toys when she’s happy with basic household supplies?!) Great post x #MarvMondays

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My son is 10 but still has all these fascinations. I am wondering if I should just give him a couple of toilet rolls to play with tomorrow? Will it “Andrex-puppy” him out or will he just think he is allowed to do it all the time? Hmmm…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s brilliant, isn’t it? My little one loves all of the above too and I love how fascinated he is with the simplest of things. He’s definitely not allowed my keys now he’s two though, he’s at the perfect ‘I’ve hidden your keys somewhere and I can talk but I’m going to pretend I don’t quite understand what you’re saying’ stage. Thanks for linking up to #MarvMondays. Kaye xo


  9. This is really lovely – my little one is exactly the same and love all those things! I do agree with the keys and remote, we even have an identical Virgin remote as we recently had our box re-installed, but she poo-poos the old one. How does she know?! It’s so wonderful to see the joy they get from these simple things, even if we’re constantly risk-assessing as a result of it πŸ˜‰ Thanks for linking your fab post to #dreamteam xx

    Liked by 1 person

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