January 12, 2007
The Zoolio Rainforest is a great little toy. It's something that you could easily slip in your diaper bag, or stash somewhere in your car. It has six activity panels, made out of various fabrics. Toddlers will love the zipping, buttoning, snapping, and babies will get a kick out of the vibrant colors and crinkle paper. Since there are six separate items in this toy (seven if you include the case), it might last a little longer during those long car trips. Heck, maybe by the time you get to the sixth one, your child will be ready for number one all over again. This toy was a little hard to find. It's made by Manhattan Toy, but other sites like Amazon, have it listed as unavailable. So keep checking back if you can't seem to find this toy!
January 5, 2007
Andy is obsessed with a blue stuffed dog that he sleeps with. I have no idea where we got it and don't even remember who gave it to us (yes, I should have kept much better track, but I had a newborn, I didn't know what was going on at the time). But I'm beginning to think we should theme our lives with blue dogs now before he becomes obsessed with Elmo or Barney and I have those items strewn across my house. Therefore, I am considering buying the Rocking Puppy for Andy's first birthday. Overall, the reviews on Amazon are pretty good, although some do say it might be more appropriate for 18 months and up instead of one year and up. But it's cute, it looks like a lot of fun, and as Andy seems to have my love of movement, I think he'll really enjoy it.
December 20, 2006
I have said once or twice before that I don't mind loud noises when Andy's playing. Maybe it's because if he's occupied and happy I don't have to be hurting my back holding my 30lb behemoth of a baby. Or maybe it's because I could be sitting down and reading a magazine or checking my email or getting a couple of "me time" minutes for a change. As long as Andy is happy, I'm happy. So of course I love Flapsi, from Oompa. When you hold one end and shake this toy, the wooden disks hit, making a loud clanking sound. As with all Haba toys, the lacquers are non-toxic, so when your baby puts it in his mouth, you don't need to worry. The best part is that it's not that expensive, so you can buy a few Haba toys at once
Anderson, like most kids I would imagine, loves to jump up and down in his Exersaucer. He always squeals with delight when we put him in there. I think he would really love this Baby Gymnastics Bounce & Spin Zebra. It's made for toddlers from 1 to 3 years and allows them to hop on the Zebra and bounce up and down and spin round and round. Sounds, lights and songs will reward your child's play while they further develop their hand-eye coordination, motor skills and balance. Everybody seems to love this toy, so I hope that you do as well! When we get it for Anderson in a few months, we'll be sure to post a full review.
December 18, 2006
I realize that I may be a bit of a dork, but I would have loved this next product when I was a toddler, and I'd still love to play with it now (assuming no one was watching). The Silk Streamer is a rainbow streamer attached to a wooden wand, and you can run all over, moving the streamer around, and watch it do circles, zig zags and more. It reminds me of the accessory used in rhythmic gymnastics, which I always look forward to watching during the summer Olympics. I think I could play with this for hours, pretending I'm an Olympian! For ages 3+.
December 13, 2006
I don't know anyone who isn't a fan of Eric Carl. I love his books so much and read them to Andy (I need to go out and get them all!), so I was very excited to discover the Hungry Caterpillar plush toy that goes along with his The Very Hungry Caterpillar board book. This toy has ten pockets that each contain a different fabric food object that is attached with an elastic cord. The objects make noise (rattle, crinkle, etc), have a variety of different textures and are made with bold colors and patterns. This is exactly the type of toy Andy would love right now.
December 12, 2006
I know I've said before how noise doesn't bother me (check out my clacker post), so I always debate writing about them as I seem to be in a huge minority here. But I just love these Maraca Shakers from Urban Monster. They are really inexpensive at only $2.50 each, come in five great colors, and are the perfect size for your little one's hands. If you don't want the noise in your household, these may be a great present for the child of someone you don't like!
December 11, 2006
The Bilibo is an innovative new toy from Switzerland. Its deliberately designed to provide as little pre-determination as possible, limited only by your child's imagination and expressiveness. This toy will appeal to children of many ages, and be an integral part of their development as well. The Bilibo is very simple: it's basically a half-shell. On one side it provides a stable platform, and the other it wobbles around. It can hold all sorts of objects: marbles, sand, water, other toys. It "grows" with your child, as they realize different possibilities for games. The Bilibo is available from the Modern Nursery, and comes in red, yellow, blue, green, orange, and purple.
December 8, 2006
Oompa Toys has a list of the top 20 toys. I'm not sure if they are the best selling toys from their site or what they think are the most educational or what, but when perusing the list I found a toy that I wish I had when I was young. The Rallina Ball Track by Selecta is made up of a few different levels, and when you place a ball at the top, you can watch it go down a track from level to level. As the ball goes down, it goes under a mouse, hits a bell, and more. This reminds me of Mousetrap a bit, a game I loved when I was younger. The balls are large and easy to grasp, and the wood is covered with non toxic paints and finishes. The list has a bunch of other great items, including the Bear's Cave that my husband wrote about in October.
December 1, 2006
We recently put a mirror in Anderson's crib, and only a few days later he started rolling onto his stomach at night. Coincidence? Perhaps, but mirrors are definitely a vital part of your child's development. The 1st Mirror by Lamaze is not just a mirror, its a multi-tasker. The angled mirror lets your child watch herself while doing tummy-time. And flip it over and the soft wedge will help support your child during tummy time as well. There are flexible straps that allow you to attach the mirror to a carseat or stroller. And best of all, the whole thing is machine washable. Just make sure to remove the mirror first!