Years ago I wrote a page about making business card cubes, and I still get someone linking to it every few months. Usually, it's a blog post along the lines of, "I have all these left over business cards, so I made a cube." The most recent reference by Saaleha Idrees Bamjee said the same thing, but she made such beautiful colored puzzle cubes, I had to read the whole post.
In it, she linked off to Made by Joel, a blog by Joel Henriques, a toy designer from Oregon. Joel's got a great, simple, home-made esthetic, but still manages to rise above the pedestrian, giving his projects a lovely spirit. For example, look at his marionette made from wooden scraps, and then the simplified version for toddlers.
I love the fact that small children can be entertained with simple things, and that playfulness can be given expression with what's lying around, without recourse to a brand name toy.
To top it off, I see that Joel has a book in the works, with the same publisher and imprint that produced my wife Susan's books!