If the electronic toys with vtech batteries are not amusing your tot for hours on end, and you need some quiet time to do the chores or have your ME time but do not really want to invest in a multitude of toys (after all, there are no guarantees that they're going to be played with anyway), then invoke the power of a child's imagination and use your regular household items.
Try a box of an old appliance or your most recent groceries. Try old pots and pans and maybe some ladles too. Try newspapers. Try a malong and see them tunnel in and out of this one, or prop it up with chairs as a makeshift tent.
If you can part with it, maybe even lend the flashlight and have them shadowplay with a light-colored blanket.
You can also just let them free on chairs of different heights.
Just use your imagination so they will also use theirs. And your pocketbook will remain intact.