Nature at Toy Fair courtesy of Safari Ltd.

February 19, 2010

In the middle of Toy Fair...a gentle bear.

If you’ve ever been at a big trade show, you know that after a day or two–you start craving real air, real food, real anything.  Something about concrete floors (badly covered with carpeting), horrible concession food and the din of the crowds that makes you want to find a tree and hug it.  So I was happy to have a little nature (albeit plastic) retreat in the miniature at Safari Ltd. - they are the masters of making really small animals. Wilderness in the miniature

We visited briefly with Safari’s President, Ramona Pariente- who was very gracious even though we were in the final hours of the show and by our own admission a little slap happy to be approaching the finish line.

You’ve probably seen their line in museum, gift and specialty stores. I’m not sure why but this collection of super small animals makes me so happy.  What is it about miniature things that seem so fun?

Of course these small animals are just right as props for dramatic play whether it’s in combination with blocks or just on their own. The line is so extensive, that you’re bound to be able to find the animals, fish, bugs or birds that capture your child’s interest. Designed for kids 3 & up, these are wonderful to collect and play with!

Nature (really tiny) from Safari Ltd.


Face of the Day: Calico Critters

February 18, 2010

International Plaything's Calico Critters

Hard not to smile, right?  Calico Critters from International Playthings, stay tuned.


Toy Fair 2010: baaahhh from Folkmanis!

February 18, 2010

Our toy fair experience is never complete without a visit to Folkmanis, the puppet masters! Here’s a little video.


Face of the Day: From Steiff

February 17, 2010

A bear to love from Steiff

Needed to share this face with you right away! So cute and amazingly soft. More to follow on this  classic handmade line of huggables from Steiff.


The cutest doll of the day!

February 16, 2010

Just wanted to share this face (complete with freckles!)….from Corolle!  More details to follow.


My Little Pony Goes UNDERWATER!

February 3, 2010

I don’t know why this made me laugh–but some how I thought My Little Pony was silly enough (yes, yes, enjoyed by millions, but still there’s something about the never-ending pink rococo plastic fantasy settings that always gets me thinking about archeological digs centuries from now..and what they’ll think about such design and the civilization that played with them.)  Click here to watch our video.

My Little Pony has now become a merpony…no kidding. So now the merponies have there own new underwater castle. From the press release, you’ll see why this was the next obvious evolution for My Little Pony:

Located in the heart of the sea, this magical castle is an underwater dream come true for the MERMAID PONIES.  Each pony will love to explore this nautical treasure with lights and sounds .  Discover PINKIE PIE’S secret shell bedroom that really opens and closes or take a pony for a ride on the “magical” seashells that allow her to “swim” around the castle. The MERMAID ponies will love to “splish and splash” on the waterslide or hang ten on the “real” waves with the tubular surf boards.

The Castle will retail for $39.99 and be available next Fall.


Free Game: How High Can You Go?

January 8, 2010

Yesterday I walked past a display of silverware that was in the form of the Empire State Building. It reminded me of a great game to play with your kids that will keep them busy on a cold winter’s day.

Challenge your kids to build the tallest building using their LEGO Bricks!  For younger kids this will be about adding more bricks until the structure falls down.  But for older kids this can also become a real hands-on experiment–how do you make the structure more stable?  What do we need to add to the base to make it less tippy.  If you’re really into the building why not make your own city of skyscrapers. What kind of buildings do they think should be in the city?  A sports arena, a shopping mall, a grocery store…always fun to hear what they want on their list.   Matchbox cars and trucks can also be used to populate the city.  Be sure to take pictures–you’ll be happy to chronicle the challenge.  You can also have them create a book with the pictures–something that can be sent to Grandparents or shared on-line.  Either way, I like encouraging kids to create their own structures from materials they have around the house.


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