October 18, 2006
If your taste in kitchenware runs a little more modern your kids might love the Pro Chef Kitchen Set from Pottery Barn Kids. The full set includes a stove, island, and refrigerator. Interactive details include stove burners that glow red, a refrigerator light that turns on when the door is opened and a dishwasher that sounds like it’s really running. There's nothing like a little realism to help along young imaginations, although it definitely does come at a high price: $879 for the whole set.
Every child needs to play with fake kitchen appliances at some point in their life. I never realized what a wide range of options were available. This French Kitchenette from Oompa has really caught my imagination. The set includes the following:
- 2 plates
- 2 forks
- 2 knives
- 1 spatula
- 1 serving spoon
- 1 saucepan with lid
- 1 skillet
- 1 salt shaker
- 1 pepper shaker
- 1 fried egg
- 1 pizza
- 1 carrot (splits into halves)
- 1 cheese slice
- 2 mushrooms
- 1 loaf of bread (splits into 4 slices)
I know the kitchen sets I played with as a child didn't include mushrooms and carrots!
October 17, 2006
At some point your child will graduate from the play kitchen to the real kitchen. I know I certainly don't want Anderson experimenting with my expensive pots and pans, so this set of Kids Cookware from IKEA would be perfect. The set includes a strainer, a whisk, a ladle, two pots, and a sauce pan. I'm not sure how old Anderson will be before he would be allowed to use these on the stove, but in the mean time, he can bang all he wants. Like everything else at IKEA, these are inexpensive at $9.99. You'll have to make a trip to the store, as these are not sold online.
October 16, 2006
Anderson is just starting to get the idea of toys. It helps that he can sit and pick up a toy that's in front of him, but even a week ago, he didn't really play much with his toys. Now something like this Multi-Sensory Clutch Cube would be perfect. He loves things that he can grasp, and loves the textures of different fabrics, and the cube has crinkly fabrics and jingles when shaken. Finally, for olfactory development, there is a refreshing green apple scent as well.
October 12, 2006
This next product I want to play with myself. Stacrobats consist of five magnetic figures, three balls, and a stage. They are full of magnets, so you can put them in different positions and stack them as you'd like. A great way for your baby to learn about balance and stacking. This toy also won the Oppenheim Gold Seal Award, iParenting Media Award, and Hot Toys Award.
October 5, 2006
Anderson has always seemed to like round objects. I think he finds them easiest to grasp. The problem with most of them is the plastic parts prohibit washing in the washing machine, and the cloth bits prevent washing in the dishwasher. These rattles by Kathe Kruse don't have that problem. You can hand wash them in cold water, and even dry them in your dryer (on the low setting).
October 4, 2006
Here's another fabric toy, the Bear's Cave by Haba. The "Cave" appears to be made from the rustling fabric that babies love so much. There is also a tinkering bell which your baby may love. Anderson has always seemed a little ambivalent towards things that make noise. I'm sure that'll change the next time I have a killer headache though.
October 3, 2006
Did anyone else see the TMX Elmo on The View a few weeks back? I didn't, but I did see the clip on The Soup. I'm wasn't so sure I'd want to buy this for my child after that clip as it looked like Elmo was doing something VERY inappropriate. However, I'm thinking that was probably just the angle of the camera. This toy actually seems pretty neat. Here's what I read about it:
-Three different tickle spots trigger rounds of infectious laughter and movement
- Elmo slaps his belly, falls forward with his butt sticking out, stands back up again, topples backwards, and kicks his legs over his belly
I'm just glad he doesn't sing, I hate that "la la la" song on Sesame Street. From what I gather, this is a hot item this Christmas season, so if you're thinking about buying one, you might want to do so now before the holiday rush.
October 2, 2006
Toys are very often hit-or-miss; you never really know if you're baby is going to play with the toys you get him. This cuddling ball by Haba will hopefully be a hit for all of you.
It is brightly colored, covered with different textures, and is designed to fostering motor skills through rolling, clutching, and catching. And even more importantly, it is hand washable in cold water. There's nothing more annoying than toys you have to wipe with a clean cloth to clean. Anderson definitely needs something like this, as I think he is getting really bored with the plastic letters that hang from his play mat. Plus, a little help in the rolling, clutching, and catching department will always be helpful.
September 29, 2006
When I was little, I was always obsessed with forts. I made them out of the couch cushions, the sheets on my bed, boxes, or anything else I could think of. I dreamed of tree houses and always wanted to visit my friend who had an actual one room mini-house on her lawn just for her. So I would have given anything for one of these play tents from Craftsbury Kids. As I loved all things girly, I would have prefered the Gingerbread Cotton Playhouse or the Summer Cottage Playhouse. But there are also the Sheriff's Office Play Tent, the Circus Big-Top Playhouse, the Large Garage Playhouse, and the Castle Playhouse. They aren't cheap, but if you feel like splurging on your little one and have the room, these are a great idea.