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We did this with our kids, too--also consider using those sample-sized boxes (we get little cereal ones in the mail constantly, it seems); just the right size for little hands!
In addition to this, I'm crocheting play foods for my toddler. I did a Google search and found a lot of free patterns that use scrap yarn - cupcakes, vegetables and a basket to hold it in. I figure it will last longer than anything I can buy, and it's a lot more special than the toys you can buy.
Very smart, and true to the toddler's real life experience. Great thrifty tip. The fake food that the sell in toy stores barely lasts five minutes before it's stepped on or whatever anyway.
I did this for my girls when they were little. We were able to buy them a "kitchen" (molded plastic tyke-size), and they LOVED cooking and playing mommy! When the food boxes got too worn out, they were easy to replace with ones from my kitchen.
I love this! My 18 mos old is now into pretending to cook and eat! Thanks for the great idea!
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