Inspiring the world.

Grandma’s toy shops for Christmas 2009

Toys have always been a love of mine. As a child, I was delighted with the mystery and surprise of receiving a new toy. Later, with my own children, I was able to revisit the world of toys. I even considered owning a toy store.

Christmas is once again near us and many of us are combing the shops, scratching our heads, or searching online for toys to buy. Now I have five wonderful grandchildren. They age from five months to six years. I am excited to search for toys for them. In recent years I have done this search almost exclusively online. I find that there is a great deal of information on the toys that are available and the prices are excellent.

For the babies on my list that I am considering:

Hasbro Playskool Busy Ball Popper – This toy was in my granddaughter’s nursery and all the very young children loved it. They loved putting the balls on the spiral track and never seemed to tire of the balls coming out the top. I’m not sure if any of them realized why the balls were coming out, but it produced a lot of laughs and fun.

LeapFrog Learn & Groove Musical Table – One of the good things about this musical table is that the baby can play with it if it is resting on the floor. Then, when they start to get up, the baby can hold it and press the various activity buttons to hear sounds and music. I like this toy because it is suitable for children 6 months to 3 years.

Fisher-Price Rainforest Jumperoo – Nothing likes the baby more than jumping. Once baby can hold their head well, this is a great toy to test those legs without putting any weight on them. There are toys around him. Some of them will make sounds when the baby jumps up. Others are great for catching or hitting. The seat rotates 360 degrees. It is very portable and can be easily stored.

Amazing Fisher-Price animals sing and choo-choo – This is an adorable train. It is suitable for crawling babies. One of the wonderful things about this is that there are no tracks for the train to fall off of. The colors of the train and the animals are beautiful. By placing one of the animals on the motor, Baby will get a song. The train lights up, plays music and makes sounds.

For the little kids on my list I’m looking at:

Fisher-Price Go Baby Go! Bounce and spin Zebra – This comes as a zebra or a pony. It is ideal for young children who can climb and rock. It is close to the ground, so any spill will not harm the child. In addition to rocking, the child can turn on it. Helps balance and the beginning of coordination. It is a fun toy.

LeapFrog Fridge Farm Magnetic Animal Set – This magnetic game can be placed on any metal surface such as the refrigerator at the best height for the baby. The animals are large enough not to be a choking hazard. Initially, the baby will delight in pressing the buttons to activate the sounds. As the baby grows and matures a little, he will begin to match the body parts of the animals and to equate the animal with the sounds. Even if they don’t combine them, they get a silly name for the animal. It is portable, so children can play with it on the floor to avoid dinner preparations.

Melissa and Doug Deluxe Standing Easel – I believe that an easel is a necessary part of every child’s life. Once a child can stand up and hold a crayon, an easel will allow them hours of entertainment and creativity. This particular easel is sturdy and allows for painting, chalk, crayons, and dry erase.

Fisher-Price Musical Tea Set – This is a lovely set of play plates in beautiful pastel colors. What child doesn’t want to imitate the adults in his life and serve them food? Constructed of sturdy plastic, it will stand up to those times when tea just falls out of little hands. The kettle is affectionate and plays “I am a small kettle.”

Tonka’s Most Powerful Truck – Children need trucks in their lives and no one makes them better than Tonka. I’m sure we had this same truck when our kids were little. It is tough and resists many abuses. We have always restricted these larger Tonka toys to the outdoors, but they can be used indoors with supervision.

For the four to five year olds on my list, I am considering:

LeapFrog Text and Learn – At this age children want to do everything that adults do in their lives. With everyone running around with Blackberries and I Phones, this gives this age group their own handheld device. It also allows them to start exploring words and start spelling.

LEGO Duplo 5380 Building Set – Like Tonka, Lego has survived and improved throughout the decades. It remains a favorite of both boys and girls. One of the benefits of buying Lego is that you can add it on a birthday or next Christmas.

Fisher-Price Rugged Kids Digital Camera – Again, just like Mom and Dad, kids love taking their own pictures. They don’t care about composition, they just drift away. They are delighted that their photos are uploaded to the computer with the photos of others. These cameras are nearly indestructible and reasonably waterproof. A kindergarten teacher wears them in her classroom and the kids love them.

Baby Alive learns to go to the toilet – This doll has the most enormous and attractive blue eyes. Eat, urinate, and defecate. She also talks and has phrases like “oh oh, I made a bad smell” that makes kids laugh out loud. It is possible to present it before the age of four when children are being trained. At an earlier age, the child who plays with her needs supervision. She is lovely.

Barbie and the three musketeers – After 50 years, Barbie is still a highly sought after item. The Barbie and the Three Musketeers series of dolls and accessories is this year’s version. The concept is based on the theory that girls can do anything they put their mind to, even become musketeers! Besides the dolls, there is a magic castle and a carriage. What fairy tale would be complete without them?

For our children ages six to eight, my list includes;

transformers – These action figures that are also three-dimensional puzzles are the delight of children who own them. Even young children who are unfamiliar with comics or movies are entertained by their own adventures. The best sellers are Optimus Prime, Ultimate Bumblebee, Devastator, and Megatron.

Bakugan 7 in 1 Maxus Dragonoid – While adults scratch their heads in amazement, young children engage with these marble spheres. This is an extension of the Japanese game Bakugan in which warriors face each other. I think the fascinating thing about these magnetic marbles as warriors is that young children who have no knowledge of the strategy game can invent their own way of playing with them. I like this game because it will last as players get older and more interested in learning the game.

Mindflex game – Without a doubt, this is the number one selling game this year. Since its introduction earlier this year, it has intrigued gamers looking for more than just mind games. This game out of the future has the players using sensors and for their abilities to concentrate by controlling the speed of the fans on the console. Many customers who have already purchased it report increased ability to focus on their children. It is recommended for people over 8 years old.

Nintendo DS Lite – This video game system is ideal for quiet moments and for traveling. It seems like there are endless games that can be played on it. It has the ability to connect wirelessly so that gamers can test their skills with other people from all over the world. One of the most popular applications for this handheld device is Mario Kart DS.

LeapFrog tag reading system – I see my grandchildren in this age group really interested in learning to read by themselves. This is another great product from LeapFrog to help you do this. This system has won many awards for the more than 17 learning activities it has.

These are some of my picks that I think fit the criteria for durability, durability, and fun.

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