I also always try to trade up or atleast even. It isn't always possible. But I do agree that if the toy has been chewed upon, or if it looks as though the kid carried it around for years, then it shouldn't be traded. I use a lot of small items that I buy at dollar stores, or gas stations. But I have also used some of the burger joint toys as well. But the catch is that I take them right out of the package and into my big pack pack that I take out with me. Reason is because when the kids see something that they think is cool, it is usually a toy anyways. So when they take a toy that is old and dirty, (which I usually throw away as soon as we get home!) I put int he brand new toy. or even a small stuffed animal. something of the sort. The only thing that really bothers me in caches that I have seen is this. I find the cache and all that is in it is a shoelace, or a zipper puller.