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We like to be out of the house often and have since the boys were little. Short trips, long trips it doesn’ matter we just like to go! We also like to eat out. All that going and eating out still means lots of having to sit still, which for boys, is usually the complete opposite of what they want to do.

When they were younger I started keeping a secret stash of fun things to do when having to sit still. It’s changed a lot as they’ve gotten older. This is what my stash looks like right now

I pick up lots of things from the Target Dollar section (love Target), or the Fun Finds section at Michaels, and then whatever little things I see along the way when I’m out and about. Lego minifigs are for the longer waits or when they are being exceptionally well behaved in a hard situation and deserve a reward. I also have the fun printouts that Jennifer from Big D and Me shared with us during Road Trip Roundup a few weeks back.

When the boys were younger I had more toys like animals, cars, Disney characters etc. At around 18months or so they really started loving stickers so I’d stock up on sticker scenes like these from Oriental Trading.

I think the key to the “Secret Stash” is that it’s new never before seen toys and things that they only play with when we are out and not something we normally do at home. This keeps it new and exciting and holds their attention longer. I like things that we can do together also instead of them just burying themselves into their Nintendo DS or something like that. It makes waiting a little more fun for me too!

Do you have a secret stash?

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Allison Waken is a wife, mom of boys and Phoenix, AZ native. She has been creating inspiring content for All for the Boys since 2011. Allison loves travel, movies and spending as much time as possible with her family while she can!


  1. I do have a secret stash – it's gotten broader since I added a little girl to the mix, thatnkfully star wars stickers still thrill her. My stash is in my bedroom closet – my husband always jokes that when we die and they clean out our closets they will find kid activitiy books, stickers, playdough, etc

  2. I have 3 boys and I just found your blog last week! I love it! Finally, there's someone out there that I can identify with! I will start my secret stash today!

  3. what a great idea to have a secret stash:) my husband has hockey cards he gives them when they are extra great:)

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