Monday, May 25, 2020

Exploring the Oregon Trail in a New Choose Your Own Adventure Book

I bet I'm not the only auntie who played The Oregon Trail when I was young - first in a classroom, led by the teacher; then as a text adventure game on an early Apple computer. And I can't be the only one here who remembers Choose Your Own Adventure books, where you turned pages depending on the choices you made in the book, to create new story paths and different endings.

I couldn't be more excited about Pick Your Own Path on the Oregon Trail (via Amazon), which comes out in July. Its tabbed pages let you decide how to deal with wild animals, weather events, famine, sickness and problems during your family's trek to Oregon Territory.

I'm envisioning playing this over Zoom with my nieces and nephews (if we're still staying home by the time the book comes out), letting them choose the adventures and guiding the story along!

-Carrie

Friday, April 17, 2020

Darling Gelato Ice Cream Stand Inflatable Playhouse and Pool for Summer Staycations

This darling inflatable gelato ice cream stand toy (via Amazon) can be used both indoors and out. It's intended for kids aged two to six. Inside, it's a playhouse, outside, it's a baby splash pool. (Note that for safety reasons it shouldn't be used INSIDE a swimming pool. It's not a flotation device).

I'd love to set this up in my yard for kids to play this summer while eating ice cream I make for them and splashing around in my sprinklers. However, I'm not sure when our coronavirus situation will permit us to invite people over to the house. So I might just ship this to my youngest nephew so he can enjoy it without me. Maybe his mom will send pics and videos of him playing with it this summer!

Friday, February 28, 2020

Keep Little Nieces and Nephews Busy on Road Trips with Mudpuppy's Pouch Puzzles

I just discovered these Mudpuppy Pouch Puzzles (via Amazon) and thought they'd be great for travel, whether via airplane, car, train or boat.

Each puzzle is designed for children ages 2 and up, and has just twelve pieces. The puzzles have a resealable pouch to keep all the pieces together.

I wouldn't recommend these puzzles for kids older than five, though, they wouldn't be challenging enough.

Puzzle themes include unicorns, ballerinas, farm and forest, a fire truck, under the ocean, zoo animals, puppies, pirates and more.

You can also shop for Mudpuppy pouch puzzles on eBay.

LEGO's New Disney Princess Storybook Adventure Playsets

New for Spring 2020 - Disney and LEGO teamed up to create portable storybook playsets for your favorite Disney Princesses. These grab-and-go playsets are intended for children ages six and up; and contain around 50 pieces each. Each set is contained in a plastic box made to look like a storybook. You can store it on your bookshelf, then your child can open the storybook and create their own fantasy adventures.

The LEGO Disney Belle's Storybook Adventures playset features a tiny fold-open Beauty and the Beast castle, and includes figures for The Beast, Belle, Chip, Mrs. Potts, Cogsworth, and the Wardrobe.

You can also shop for LEGO's Disney Belle's Storybook Adventures playset on eBay.

The LEGO Disney Storybook Adventures Mulan playset folds open to create Mulan's garden.

The set includes figures depicting Mulan, Cri-Kee, Khan and Li Shang. You can also shop for the Mulan Storybook Adventures LEGO playset on eBay

The LEGO Disney Ariel's Storybook Adventures playset has over 100 pieces. You can play in Ariel's underwater palace.

The Ariel LEGO playset includes figures of Princess Ariel, Prince Eric, Sebastian and Flounder. You can shop for this Ariel's Storybook Adventures playset on eBay.

The LEGO Disney Frozen Anna and Elsa's Storybook Adventures playset will surely be popular with kids.

This storybook toy opens to reveal the Arendelle castle, and includes mini figures of Elsa, Anna, Kristoff, and Olaf. This LEGO Disney playset can be purchased on eBay as well.

I hope they make sets for my two favorite princesses, Snow White and Cinderella!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Darling and Simple Wooden Plates for Kids from Petits Et Maman

I'm not sure how much my toddler nieces and nephews would appreciate cute and fun dishware. I have a feeling it would be a brief moment of excitement, then back to eating! These darling wooden plates from Petits Et Maman are mostly for my benefit! Take a peek at how cute they are.

This is definitely my favorite out of all the options. This precious rabbit wood plate would be great with some baby carrots piled on it! The kids would feel more encouraged to eat their vegetables if they're eating from this cute plate.

Even if this elephant wood plate is a very adorable dish, I'm not sure how well this would do holding food! I don't think you would be able to use the trunk for a whole lot, except for really small foods.

I could definitely use this duck wood plate for snacks after bath time. Plus it looks like it could hold a substantial amount of food!

Not only can you imitate a rocket ship when trying to feed the baby, you could even have a rocket ship shaped plate! It's divided up nicely too, so food won't touch. That tends to be an ordeal in my household!

I kind of think this wood flower plate looks like the Mario World fire flower. That means it is extra fun (for my benefit, of course!) I love being able to see the wood texture, it's beautiful.

My nieces and nephews are practically little monkeys! This wood monkey plate would be fun to put little pieces of banana or fruit. Unfortunately I know the kids and me would be making monkey faces at each other through the whole meal - I'm a bad influence!

What an awesome way to divide the food up. The wood automobile plate would work for kids that are a little older than two or three, plus they would appreciate it a little more!

Both of my nieces and nephews would adore this cute little wooden robot plate. The little antenna on the top of it's head is pretty cute. I know the kids would ask lots of questions about robots and technology after seeing their food on this plate.

These wooden plates from Petits Et Maman are very fun and even better, not made out of plastic! I know I will have fun bringing these out when the little ones come over to snack! What do you guys think? Comment below!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Fantastic and Colorful DIY Paper Toys for Rainy Autumn Days

Is it surprising that it has been fairly rainy where I'm at in the world? Any sunshine I might have will most likely be short lived! My nieces and nephews think I've become a master at rainy day activities. I have plenty of paper dolls and villages to entice the little one's imaginations. These paper toys by Fantastic Toys are really vibrant and unique. The best thing, they're instantly available! Just buy, print, and play! Take a look.

I really love the idea of putting together these strawberry, beehive, and acorn cottages. Just with this set you can make your own fairy garden inside your home! I love the villagers associated with each cottage, especially the acorn people. The acorn caps are so cute.

You might as well add this mushroom cottage to the rest of the fairy collection. These guys are little gnomes though, which should get along with the fairies. They can all be mischievous together.

The fairy houses are really precious, but I actually enjoy the characters that come with it more. I can see the kids playing with these villagers quite a bit because they come in little animal outfits - like in Peter Pan!

This may be my favorite fairy mushroom cottage. I love the other accessories that come with it, such as the flowers and stumps to add to your "front yard". Shh, my favorite is the unicorn!

The cool thing about this mushroom cottage paper toy is that you can use it like a dollhouse. My nieces would love to play make believe with this mushroom home. The fairy that comes with this set reminds me of Snow White. She is surrounded by all kinds of animals!

Now we can have our own little Mad Tea Party with this Alice in Wonderland paper set. The sad Alice stuck in the White Rabbit's chimney made me giggle, I confess. These are just truly adorable, it's hard to say no to this colorful set! It's familiar too, which the kids will love.

I've always wanted to have a swing in a tree, so I'm tempted by this apple tree and dollhouse. You can make your little people hang out inside or go and play outside with the swing! This is a great starter kit if you wanted to try these out before getting them all.

I can see this Gnome log race track ending really well or horribly. With the nephews, they might end up squishing the poor paper gnomes as they are trying to race each other. Competition is deadly!

Inspiring the kids to go to Paris is at least a more realistic fantasy! I love all the different pieces for this particular set. The air balloon, Eiffel Tower, and cafes are all wonderful features.

I do feel like these guys are very generous as far as how many figures they give you per set. If you think you need more gnomes to populate your village, you can get these cute fawn and gnome dolls. They are really adorable, I love their pointy hats!

These paper toys by Fantastic Toys are not only great for rainy days, but sunny days too! Play outside or inside. Probably the best thing about this is that they are immediately available to print out. What do you guys think of these play sets? Comment down below!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Build a Paper Medieval City in Your Living Room

I am in love with paper dolls and paper cities! I think it's an easy, cheap, and fun activity that everyone can participate in. I've had many successful paper parties with both nieces and nephews! Since it has been so cloudy over here in the Pacific Northwest, I think these paper medieval cities would be so much fun to build inside my living room. What do you think?

I would love to pretend to make old garments with this weaving workshop paper city set. This is a vital part of making the whole medieval town come alive. We could even pretend that we are weaving robes for royalty!

The medieval city burgher house paper set comes with bards, minstrels, and waitresses. After a hard day's work, get dinner at the burgher house.

Wouldn't it be fun to bake cookies and play with this Bakery medieval paper city set? It would definitely give the essence that the set is alive! I'm sure my nieces and nephews would definitely love that. Any excuse to make cookies is a good one.

The best part about this merchant house paper city set is that it will teach (hopefully) the nieces and nephews to share. They can trade pretend or real goods. It's a good way to educate them to barter. Hopefully there won't be any arguments.

These are a super fun and great way to get those imaginations working. Take a look at these paper medieval buildings on Amazon. Comment down below and tell me which you think would get used the most. I feel like I need to have all four to create a whole kingdom!