November 29, 2006
We all know that music is very important for the development of our babies. It's often just a question of how do we incorporate more music into our daily lives. Well, the Learn & Groove Musical Table engages and entertains you baby with songs, sparkling lights and lots of great things to spin, slide, push, and pull. There are 15 musical activies and more than 40 songs and melodies. And its a great play-date toy, since up to four children can play on it at the same time.
November 24, 2006
Haba toys are great because they are simple and babies love them. One of Andy's favorite toys is the Pipapo. Made with three circles in a pyramid like structure, this toys rattles, moves around, and is brightly colored so it keeps Andy's attention. He likes to bite at it or just hold on to it, which is easy because the circles are small enough for his little hands.
November 20, 2006
I loved little pianos when I was a small child. I pretended I was making great music as I pressed all those little keys. It's great to see that this old favorite is still around today and hasn't been messed up by the higher ups in the toy industry (like the Sit N Spin). The Little Tikes Baby Tap A Tune Piano is easy for a small child to use, has bright colors, and has rounded edges so there's no way for him to get hurt. I think music is a very important part of learning. We play music for Andy in the house quite often, and I have made up a bunch of songs that I sing to him throughout the day. I'd love to get this toy (as we really need to buy him some toys!) to continue his education and let him learn that he too can be a part of the music. If you'd prefer something a little taller so your child can stand while using it, consider the Fisher Price Interactive Baby Grand Piano or the Chicco Music 'n Play Table, both of which have good reviews on Amazon as well.
November 17, 2006
I've always been more of an Eeyore guy. Call me crazy, I know. Most people seem to adore Tigger. If you're one of those, you or your child might enjoy Musical Turbo Tail Tigger. After pressing his hand, Tigger bounces higher and higher on his coiled up tail. A fun musical track plays while Tigger says his catch phrases and other whacky sound effects. There may not be any volume control, so you might have to employ the old trick of putting tape over the speaker to keep things at a reasonable volume.
November 16, 2006
When I was young, I always wanted to help my family with yard work. While that notion was quickly dismissed once I started pushing a real lawn mower, I found that pushing a fake lawn mower was hours of fun. Now that many of you are outside raking leaves and mowing the lawn one last time, the Little Tikes Mulching Mower might be the perfect toy to teach your child the joys of yard work. This mower can be used indoors and out, and it has little beads that pop as the mower is pushed. It includes a clicking key and a throttle for some extra realism.
November 15, 2006
The Little Tikes Highback Toddler Swing sounds like it would be a great swing when your child is a little too young for the regular swing set in your back yard. The high seat back will give extra support to your little one, so you can push her extra high! The wide seat and leg openings will help accommodate your child as she grows. Heavy-duty hardware and a weather-resistant rope are included so you can attach it to a tree or a swing set.
I really hate when a great toy from my childhood is ruined. Here is a fine example, the Simon Says Sit N Spin Interactive Game. Now, I was the biggest Sit N Spin fan. I could use that thing all day long, and I did for years. When I attended a birthday party for a niece a few months ago, I tried hers as well. I really wish they made them in adult sizes, and of course as soon as Andy is old enough I want to get him one too (especially as he seems to have acquired my love for spinning and drops, he loves to be thrown in the air!). But this new version of Sit N Spin sounds awful. While I think the addition of music could be nice, I think Simon Says is a little much. The reviews on Amazon are just awful. It's too loud with no volume control, it doesn't spin easily, and it's too small for a petite 3 year old! What a shame! Hopefully a better one will come out soon that is a little more simple and like the version I grew up with.
November 13, 2006
When I was young, I remember getting a doll that rollerskated. It was what I wanted most for Christmas, so I was thrilled to open that present and see this doll. That day my mother put batteries into her, and we tried her out. She didn't work though. Instead of rollerskating she'd fall over. I was very disappointed, and I never really played with her after that.
This is what I don't want to happen to Andy. I want to buy his presents that he'll get a lot out of. I don't want to spend my money on something he'll like for a half hour and then ignore from then on. This is one reason I really like the comment section on Amazon. I use it to help me decide if I really want something or not. I was very interested in the Roll-a-Rounds Drop & Roar Dinosaur, especially since we already own the balls that it needs. Although it'd be a tight fit in our little apartment, I figured I'd find a place for it because it looked like so much fun for Andy. But almost everyone who owns it, according to Amazon's comments, doesn't like it.
However, I must recommend the Listen-Up Rounds. Andy still is a little small to really play with them, but he loves the noises when I play with them in front of him. I think they are a toy that he'll use for a long time, and the comments on these are pretty good.
Peter wrote about the Play-Doh 50th Anniversary Rainbow Pack last Thursday, and I wanted to give my opinion on this product. It seems like every child loves play-doh more than anything in the world. They are always so excited to receive it, and it's all they want to play with. At least, that's what I've seen from my experiences with young children.
I always got the impression that the parents felt quite differently though. Doesn't it get into everything? Isn't it a pain to clean up? I've been dreading the play-doh stage for these reasons. But another silly reason is that I'm a little OCD sometimes, and I honestly cannot stand to see the colors mushed together. Even when I was little I was this way. I have a memory of me sitting in the living room (maybe with newspaper under me so I didn't get it in the rug) only playing with one color so that they didn't all get combined to the point of not being able to separate them. I just see 50 colors as stressful. I think it would be so easy to end up with a big pile of brown play-doh after a day of playing. So while this product is neat, I think I'll be giving Andy a four pack of play-doh for now.
November 9, 2006
We're all in favor of gender-role equality here at Super Cool Baby, so if your toddler doesn't seem too interested in playing Kitchen with one of our many kitchen sets, you might consider a tool bench like the Sesame Street Sing n' Giggle Tool Bench. This tool bench has a Cookie Monster drill press, and a Bert and Ernie circular saw, and a hammer and screwdriver. As your kids play with it, they'll hear "buzz" and "skreek" sounds at the appropriate times. However, there's no volume control for this very loud toy, so some well placed duct tape over the speakers might just save your sanity. The tool bench requires three AA batteries, so if you have a little Do-It-Yourselfer in your house, make sure to stock up.