Since many bloggers seem to be putting together this kind of list at this time of year, I thought I would offer you my contenders:
1. The Orbees Soothing Spa
Five minutes of bliss for your daughter (who let’s face it, would have to be under the age of 8 not to want the real thing instead), five years of finding little colored balls in your carpet, under the bed, in a shoe, under the sofa, in the dog’s bowl…you get the idea.
2. Anything Made by Mattel since 1987
Four hours to put together the Barbie Dream house, and the furniture stays together pretty well…as long as nobody actually plays with it. The Princess has this exact Barbie house. The furniture fell apart so many times that she just finally gave up on it. It’s just cheap (and yet not cheaply priced) Chinese-manufactured crap. Don’t even get me started on the elevator. The same goes for anything Hot Wheels related.
3. Fart Whistle
Needless to say, hours and hours of fun for the whole family. And — how old is that guy on the package supposed to be?
4. Any Kind of Voice Changing Device
Pretty much anything that makes electronic noise is annoying, but when kids can take their own voices and magnify and distort them, well, the fun never stops. At least not until you take a hammer to the thing.
5. Any Craft That is Way Beyond the Child’s Appropriate Age Level
While crafts by themselves present enough set-up/clean-up work for any parent, a craft that the child can’t actually do by him- or herself is the eighth circle of hell. Even for the most Martha-Stewarty mother.
Good luck with your holiday shopping!