DISCLOSURE: This post is sponsored by Clorox®.
Imagination knows no bounds. You give a kid a box, and the possibilities are endless. You give a child a toy, and you’ve just put their imagination in high definition (HD).
During the summer, that HD imagination usually involves some outdoor terrain. Tree branches become forests. Mud becomes molten lava. And dirt becomes, well, it’s usually just dirt, but dirt by itself is fun for most children.
And there is your summer dilemma: Who are you, as a parent, to say “no” to the inclusion of natural elements in your child’s story? I know my parents didn’t, and I’m thankful.
As a younger sibling, I traveled to many of my older sister’s softball games when I was little. You know what kept me occupied during those long hours? Just a few toys, a pile of dirt and my imagination. I would find the biggest mounds to climb and suddenly the stories in my head would race into reality. I buried action figures, poured water to make swimming pools, then poured pop to make lakes of acid rain, and even built fortresses out of mud. My playtime was filthy.
As a parent, I encourage my kids to do the same kind of imaginative play to keep boredom away. In fact, it’s been rumored I occasionally get in on the mess myself. I mean, someone has to show them an adventure with dinosaurs cannot be the same without the mud lava. And how can they know just how heroic their heroes are if they don’t allow them to be buried alive in the sand? After all, did a story really happen or a child really play if his or her toys aren’t inundated with all the dirt, grime and – well, icky-ness — of the outdoors?
I think not.
Imagination is not real but germs are
Imagination, combined with the great outdoors, is a dirty sport, and our children’s toys often bear the brunt of that creativity. Playthings require a cleaning afterward because germs, like villains, should never get away clean – they should just get away when you clean. And for our disinfecting and cleaning, we use Clorox® Regular-Bleach₂ with CLOROMAX®.
Want to see how it’s done? Check out this video about how Clorox can keep those hard, nonporous toys clean, germ-free and ready for repeat performances:
To review, it’s as easy as this to clean and disinfect toys:
Start by wiping excessive gunk off the item with a wet sponge. Then, pour 1/2 cup of Clorox® Regular Bleach2 with CLOROMAX® into one gallon of water. Once you have your bleach solution, thoroughly wet the toy’s surface with solution or let it soak in the solution. Then, allow the item to stay in contact with the solution for five minutes. After the soak, rinse with clean water and let air dry. Then let the imaginative play begin … again!
Other great outdoor cleaning, disinfecting tips
And don’t forget outdoor play equipment, like plastic jungle gyms and slides, too! To remove heavy stains and soiling, like bird poop, from these items, try Clorox® Clean-Up® Cleaner + Bleach: Just hold the bottle about four to six inches from the mess, spray until thoroughly wet, let stand for 30 seconds and rinse or wipe clean. Poof – clean and disinfected!
Even a child’s wading pool (or is this your kid’s roaring ocean?) could use a dose of Clorox clean – just add 5 teaspoons of Clorox® Regular-Bleach₂ with CLOROMAX® per 100 gallons of water to help sanitize before the splashing starts. Remember, empty the pools daily and then refill and repeat your chlorination.
While some of this might seem only to be appeasing our parental paranoia about germs, the bigger part of the equation is this: clean toys and play equipment invites more play. It opens the door to future creativity. Maybe the toy encounters the same challenge, or maybe, just maybe, the story shifts and a new setting is selected — this time to a muddy swamp instead of a dusty desert. Either way, Clorox’s cleaning power and disinfecting ease has you covered.
Whatever the case may be, know that you can watch endless episodes of these shows without the worry that their stories will be canceled because of icky, germy toys. What comes next is everything.