1.) A freestanding drawer constructed of real wood that appears to have a truly functional purpose in the real world, as opposed to a plastic version that may fit nicely next to a toy kitchen. The height would be adjustable but ideally at a level that is at the tippy-toe reach of a toddler.
When the toddler reaches blindly into the drawer, he/she will find (toy) sharpened pencils and pens that he/she may chew, jam into their eyes, or use as a stabbing implement on his/her unsuspecting sibling.
I'd call it the "Juvenile Delinquent's Junk Drawer."
This drawer exists in real life next to our refrigerator and it’s one of Tilly’s hot spots on any given day. Unfortunately for all involved, the pens and sharpened pencils are real. The drawer is now empty.
2.) A freestanding door and door jamb that sits in the middle of a room. A parent could adjust the resistance to control the level of noise made upon closure, which might range from silent to annoyingly loud slam.
The door would have to at least have the appearance of genuine wood. However, the edges would be made of some type of foam so that any fingers getting caught in between a door and a jamb would not be amputated.
Gus would pay $1 million for this toy. And it may occupy him for twelve straight hours, so long as an unattended stairway is not within sight. Let's call this one "All Jambed Up."
3.) Notebooks, sticky pads, or packaging of any translucence that is actually a vegetable or fruit pulp with nutritional value. The key to pulling off this sham is leaving the item in a location that suggests it was abandoned accidentally, say while attending to the diaper of a different child in the house.
Like a barn mouse, Tilly sniffs out these little gems from miles away. I’ll stumble upon her as I turn a corner dirty diaper in hand after having just changed Gus and there she is, gnawing away on a grocery list or sticky notes from a deposition transcript I took home from work. Maybe the product will be called “Edible Papyrus” or something to that effect.
Maybe we could resurrect fruit roll-ups and fashion them into some type of Trapper Keeper. That would be like Tilly’s Thanksgiving/Christmas meal all combined into one secret snack club.
4.) A toilet bowl complete with water and flushing mechanism. To ensure the bona fide appearance of this number one Christmas gift in 2013, I don’t recommend locating it in a bathroom. Instead, I’d stash it in a closet or something with the door left slightly open.
Gus eyeballs the bathroom door in our house whenever he’s doing rounds just in case someone didn’t close it all the way during a hasty exit. Upon seeing any daylight at the entrance, he charges in there and immediately inspects the john before he promptly splashes his arm shoulder-deep as if digging for catfish in a riverbed.
The "Hideaway Head" could retail for a cool $59.95 at Target on Black Friday. Could you imagine the unintentional comedy of the television commercial?
5.) The Dexter edition industrial-size plastic wrap wallpaper for moms and dads. This product would be a transparent adhesive that lies invisible over kitchen walls, window sills, moldings, and other fixtures to protect them from the shrapnel in any meal involving kids under five within a twenty-five foot radius of the kitchen table.
I swear we painted our kitchen within the last two years even though it's beginning to look like an abandoned dining room from a house in Chernobyl. We might as well let Crips and Bloods tag the place as if it was a subway car because it would look a thousand times better than the current state of dried-up, partially chewed remnants of fruit morsels and Cheerios that pock mark the vicinity at random locations from five feet and below.
3M is probably working on a prototype of this product as we speak. Home Depot can set up a nice display at its entrance. The DIY network might even have an episode to show nincompoops like me how it's so easy to install myself.
And there we have it. If I see any of these products on shelves this year, I expect at least a free sample.