Sunday, December 26, 2010

Kid Party Ideas for Polar Express Party - Party Favors

Polar Express Chocolate Tickets - Cover chocolate bars with gold paper wrapper with the words "Polar Express" and "Round Trip" on them.

Sleigh bell, hot chocolate mug with powder packed inside, icicles to hang on the tree, souvenir train ticket with word such as "Believe" punch, snowflake tiaras, Christmas stickers, wooden train whistles, jingle bell bracelet.

Monopoly and Other Favorite Childrens Games

With all the wonderful childrens games on the market it is difficult to know where to start. Monopoly has been around for decades and has entertained and educated many children and adults alike. Why not start then, with monopoly?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Soft and Cuddly Teddy Bears, Beanie Babies, Plush Toys and Large Stuffed Animals are All Time Favorites

Everyone loves stuffed animals and teddy bears. From very young children who love to snuggle with them at night or during nap times to older individuals who often have large collections of stuffed animals. There are many collectors clubs for stuffed animals and teddy bear aficionados.

Childrens Toys for the Active Kids - Keep them Busy Indoors and Outdoors

Do you ever wonder where they get all their energy? Young, active kids never seem to tire. Some of the best toys for the busy child include swing sets, little tykes childrens toys, wagons, ride on toys and various other outdoor toys. In fact outdoor toys including swing sets are perfect for these busy little people.

Preschool Toys for that Inquisitive Age

Anyone who has a preschooler knows how curious and inquisitive they are at that age. Toys for tots are perfect toys to solve their curiosities as are puppets, discovery toys, wooden toys and playmobil toys. In fact there are many wonderful toys for tots in this age category.

Kids Learn with Educational Toys While They Are Having Fun!

There is nothing more exciting for a child than receiving a new toy, and educational toys are the best ones to buy. Children are learning every day from everything that they do. Educational toys will make the learning process more fun.

Large Variety of Trikes to Choose From

There is such a variety of trikes (tricycle), bikes and scooters for children and adults to choose from. Your child will most likely start out riding on a ride-on toy or trikes and eventually progress into one of the popular scooter varieties or bicycles available. Scooters are a great choice for children three and up; they will most likely be able to ride a scooter before a bicycle.

Monopoly the Best Selling Board Game in the World

People love playing games, whether it's monopoly or free children's computer games there's no better way to pass the time and have some fun. Monopoly is still the best selling board game in the world, sold in over eighty countries and twenty six languages. But unlike monopoly, free children's computer games are an educational and interactive way to introduce children to an endless variety of learning skills and exciting games, and yes it's one of the few things these days that is free.

Little Girls Imagine and Dream with Barbie

Barbie has been a popular name for almost half a century. Barbie dolls were invented to give little girls a modern charming doll to imagine and dream about the future with. There is no end to the available Barbie dolls, barbie play sets, barbie collectibles, barbie clothes and barbie accessories in sight.

Toys Every Little Girl Wants | Baby Dolls

Look into any little girls toy chest and you are more than likely to find dolls. Little girls and children worldwide have loved and adored dolls, doll accessories and doll houses for ages. Dolls come in a wide variety of sizes, styles, outfits, hairstyles and options.

Stuffed Animals and Plush Toys - Classic Kids Toys

Stuffed animals are a classic toy that children the world over have adored and loved for ages. From teddy bears to stuffed dinosaurs stuffed animals and toys are a comforting and favorite childhood treasure. With so many lovely plush stuffed animals in every animal, reptile, insect, sea creature and fictional character imaginable it is hard to select just one to take home.

Sandboxes and Swing Sets for a Make-Believe World

Little Tikes swing sets are something you associate with outdoor play whereas playing with action figures is popular no matter what the weather is for indoor or outdoor play. Unlike swing sets action figures if played with outdoors are a little more easily misplaced and lost.

Multitude of Toys for Tots Options - Toddler Crafts and Toys

Collecting and purchasing toys for tots can at times be overwhelming. Any parent, collector or gift buyer of toys for tots is faced with a multitude of toy options from roller skates to puppets theaters. Some toys more than others are usually sure fire choices; dolls for girls, trucks for boys or depending on the child vice versa. If your shopping for trucks, toy cars or toy tractors there are some fun and exciting options available.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Wonderful Selection of Baby Toys Available

For anyone expecting or who has recently had a baby they will be amazed at the wonderful selection of baby toys to be found. Never has there been such a selection of innovative and exciting baby toys for newborn babies to toddler.

Educational and Learning Toys Have Excellent Options

Never have there been so many wonderful educational toys available for purchase. Educational toys and learning toys come in an excellent variety of options designed to help children with independent play, mathematics, musical, linguistic, motor skills, cooperative play and visual stimulation.

What's a Netsuke? Miniature Sculpture of Japan

Netsuke (pronounced NET-ski or NET-skeh) are small sculptures that were used with the traditional Japanese kimono. A traditional kimono has no pockets, and is fitted to the body using a large sash called an obi. Hanging items such as purses, tobacco pouches and containers for writing implements (sagemono) were hung from the obi by a silk cord. To keep the cord from slipping out of the obi, a small weighted toggle was attached. This toggle was called a netsuke.

How do I make thin, real wax candles for my candlesticks?

You can make very realistic miniature candles by dipping pieces of string in wax - a technique that has been used to make full-size candles for centuries. Tape a pencil between two cans or blocks to make a drying rack. Cut a 6-inch piece of crochet or sewing thread for each set of candles desired. Gather up your unwanted candles or purchase new candle wax from craft stores or parafin from the canning department of grocery stores. Cut the wax into small pieces. Younger crafters should work with an adult during the following process. Place the wax in a tin can, metal measuring cup or small saucepan.

Designing a Dollhouse Part 3 - Cutting for Doors and Windows

Today, my goal was to get the openings for the doors and windows cut. I'd alread gone shopping for my components, and was lucky to find 5 plain working windows at my local Hobby Lobby store, which was having a 50% off sale on their dollhouse supplies. I saved enough money on the windows to afford a nice Houseworks glazed front door, as well as a set of french doors for the second story balcony. All my components are relatively plain, with no extra trim. I made this choice because I am planning on building the ground floor display windows from scratch, and want to trim all the store-bought windows and doors to match.

Ideas to Help Make Your Village Display Personal

Creating a Master Plan for Displays
There are many things to consider when planning a Christmas Village display, such as the size and complexity of the presentation. Creating a blueprint or layout will help establish a master plan to guide the arrangement of the entire Village.

Here are a couple of tips:

Unusual Containers for Miniature Scenes

Feeling boxed in? Here are some container ideas for miniature scenes:

Build a dance studio in a ballet shoe box or old ballet suitcase.

For your favorite beautician, how 'bout a mini scene in an old bonnet hair dryer, or one of those new colorful makeup cases?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Rustall Rusting and Weathering System

 The package header claims that this product will rust anything, including plastic, metal, plaster, styrene, and even paper, so I got out my paint brushes and put it to the test.

Rustall is a four part ageing system. It's packaged in four clearly labelled bottles sold in a set, although the individual bottles are also available separately.

Choosing the Right Colors for Your Dollhouse

You've finally purchased the dollhouse kit of your dreams. Now comes the hard part -choosing the correct colors. Color can make or break a project, especially if it's a house with a historical look to it. The goal in choosing colors should be to create a harmonious look inside and out, while still allowing the individual characteristics of each room to be explored. So, how do you develop a color pallete that does right by the history of the house, creates a pleasant overall appearance, and also works well with the room in which the house will eventually be displayed?

Where to Find Collectible Villages Houses and Miniatures

Now that the holiday decorating season is upon us, I'd like to talk a bit about collectible villages. Nothing offers a mini collector more immediate gratification than these tiny treasures. Just take them out of the box, pop in a couple of lights, do a little arranging, and there you have it! For the do it yourself types, the sky's the limit in terms of decorating and accessories, offering the opportunity to do a great deal of exterior work that isn't generally done with traditional dollhouses.

I recently set out on a village hunt at the large chain stores in my area, and here's what you'll find out there:

The Fear of Miniature Stores Shopping List

Like most miniature lovers, you probably have a loved one who breaks out in a cold sweat at the mere mention of a trip to the local mini store. This article is for him (or her).

Never fear, miniphobes - I'm here to help you with your Christmas shopping! You can surprise your dear one with all sorts of useful, thoughtful gifts without ever having to venture into the great unknown. Shopping at your local hardware store can yield a treasure trove of mini delights. (A clever mini lover might even print off the following list, and check the boxes of the items that would be most appreciated to help you along.)

How to Display Your Village Collectibles

Stuck on how to create an effective display with your collectible village pieces? Here are a few tips:

Start With a Background
Although several of the collectible village lines have pre-designed backgrounds, and effective display can begin with something as simple as a piece of blue fabric. Choose a sky blue color for a daytime display. For a more dramatic effect, or for a nighttime scene, use a darker blue. Inexpensive broadcloth will work, or you can use cotton velveteen for a rich, deep sky effect. Glue, tape or staple fabric to a piece of heavy cardboard or a sheet of styrofoam. 

Where to Display Your Village Collection

 Are you an avid village collector? Is your attic filled with tiny ceramic houses, trees, and ice skaters just waiting to be displayed for the holiday season? Are you running out of room for your tiny town?

Village collecting can become an obsession, and it's easy to end up with more buildings that you can display, especially when other Christmas items like presents and the tree are taking up much of your extra space. Here are a few tips on creative ways to display your village pieces:

Designing a Dollhouse Part 2 - Plans and Early Construction

Construction has begun on my first dollhouse design, so I thought I'd share a few photos of the house in its current state, and talk a bit about the house plans and the early phase of construction.

Designing a Doll House Part 1 - Kid's Dollhouses

I've spent the last 10 minutes digging splinters out of my hands. This can only mean one thing: I've started a new doll house.

Unlike the kit dollhouses I've done in the past, this house is one of my own design. It started as a little pencil sketch, based on a building I lived in while I was in New York. The ground floor was is a store, with the house up above. It was built in the late 1890's, and had 4 floors. The building was very narrow, but deep.

Miniature World - What Do All Those Letters Mean?

Do you ever find yourself wandering through your favorite miniature web site or magazine wondering what on earth all those letters stand for? Here's a short run down:

CIMTA is the Cottage Industry Miniaturists Trade Association. Membership in this organization is by application and payment of fees. There are two types of membership: Regular Members are individuals who handcraft miniatures as a cottage industry, and have been selling wholesale for a minimum of six months; Supporting Members are retail shops, retailers, publishers and wholesalers of handcrafted miniatures.

Miniature Glossary

Each week in the Miniatures Chat room, I get questions about terms. Here are a few things you'll commonly hear fellow miniature makers talking about:
A strip of trim located at the base of a wall, covering the place where the wall and floor meet.

Choosing a Dollhouse Kit - Where to Shop Online

Now it's time to start comparing different houses, to figure out which style is right for you, your space, your abilities, and your checkbook. There are dozens of miniature retailers online, and comparing the various styles and prices of kits is relatively simple if you know where to look. Let's go shopping!

Choosing a Dollhouse Kit

One of the most difficult aspects of building your first kit dollhouse has always been choosing the kit. The careful consideration of style, size, degree of difficulty, and price is the cornerstone of any dollhouse project. With the recent boom in miniature sites on the Internet, shopping for dollhouse kits has never been easier. Chances are, if you can think of it, somebody out there is selling it - so where do you start? First, there are a couple of things to consider:

Cozy Coupe II Car

The classic kid-powered car has a whole new look! The updated styling includes a high seat back and storage in the rear. There are many special features including a vanity license place, "ignition switch," key, and remote key clicker with four electronic sounds. Rugged durable tires, plus an open-and-close gas cap make this fun that will last and last. Batteries are included. 32.25"L x 17.5"D x 32.23"H

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Whoozit Playmat

A playmat with pizzazz--this lovable Whoozit amuses baby with his colors, textures, and sounds, then turns inside out for a huggable pillow or handy carrying case. Instead of putting baby directly on the floor or on a blanket, this 27" x 38" playmat keeps baby clean, comfortable, and entertained. The mat is a cushiony quilt with bright colors and fun patterns. 

Baby Van Gogh

It's never too early to expose your child to the world of art. In this video approach to learning colors, you'll follow art-loving puppet Vincent Van Goat and his apprentices as they blend images, music, poetry, and art to create six color-themed masterpieces. During Vincent's creative process, you and your child will explore the way colors make us feel, note the presence of colors in familiar objects, and discover the combinations of color in famous paintings.

Baby Van Gogh with Book

Expose your child to the world of art with this video and book set that brings a new approach to learning colors. Follow art-loving puppet Vincent Van Goat and his apprentices as they blend images, music, poetry, and art to create six color-themed masterpieces. During Vincent's creative process, you and your child will explore the way colors make us feel, note the presence of colors in familiar objects, and discover the combinations of color in famous paintings. 

Tik Tak: Puzzles and Patterns

Tik Tak Vol. 1 - Puzzles & Patterns

What fascinates infants and toddlers? Bright, colorful forms, familiar objects, playful movements, and especially music. "Tik Tak" combines these essential elements to entertain and challenge your child. According to experts, "Tik Tak" stimulates a child's observation and sensory skills while introducing fundamental concepts. For example, children watch as pieces of a colorful puzzle disappear and reappear on the screen in time with compelling music, uncovering parts of a hidden picture. Gradually, all the pieces of the puzzle disappear and the entire picture is revealed, showing young viewers that a whole is made up of parts. A European classic for more than 25 years and Parenting Magazine's pick as one of the top five toddler videos, "Tik Tak"'s magical images will engage your child, and even amaze you!

Teletubbies: Dance with the Teletubbies

Over the hills and far away, Teletubbies come to play. Meet Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po, four Tubbies who bounce and giggle as they learn new things about the world around them. As children interact with this video, they will clap their hands, stomp their feet, and wiggle their toes along with the gentle and magical Tubbies. This landmark preschool series aims to help your child develop physically and socially, all while celebrating the joy of play. It's use of repetition encourages self-esteem and motivates children to follow along. Bring the Teletubbies home to your child!

Baby Einstein

Delight your child and stimulate her capacity to learn with the award-winning Baby Einstein. As you and baby watch this video, you'll see visually stimulating toys and objects parade across the screen, as well as pleasing sequences of patterns and photographs.

The scenes are accompanied by music, natural sounds, and nursery rhymes spoken by mothers in their native languages of English, Spanish, Japanese, Hebrew, German, Russian, and French. 

Baby Mozart

Following in the footsteps of its award-winning predecessor, Baby Einstein, this volume is based on research that shows a strong relationship between listening to Mozart's music and the development of spatial intelligence and certain cognitive skills. Spatial intelligence is associated with advanced ability in mathematics, science, the performing arts, and chess. 

Baby Bach

Based on research in the area of music therapy and its positive effect on physical health and intelligence, this playful music video is sure to fascinate and delight your child. Among many other beneficial effects, exposure to Bach's music has been shown to enhance creativity, improve academic achievement, reduce anxiety, and heighten mental awareness. Interesting toys, kinetic art, and other real-world objects will intrigue your baby visually as child-friendly classical orchestrations stimulate your baby's mind. Provide your prodigy-in-the-making with a rich source of stimulation they can enjoy again and again.

The Rugrats Movie Activity Challenge

The Pickle family has a new bundle of joy, baby Dil, which means that Tommy, Chuckie, and their friends have a new bundle of adventures in store for them. Featuring six original games inspired by The Rugrats Movie, this program helps build problem solving, creative and critical thinking skills with activities like speeding through traffic on the Reptar Wagon, steering the Aqua Reptar through raging rapids, and more.

Backyard Football

You're in charge of the action as you direct the play, run, kick, and pass the ball. Enjoy the roar of the crowd as you challenge your favorite sport stars to a pick-up game in a variety of locations. There's Steve Young, Barry Sanders, John Elway, Jerry Rice, Dan Marino and more--all as kids! Pick your team, logos, colors, and strategy, and then lead your team to victory at the Colossal Cereal Bowl. 

Disney's Magic Artist Studio

Sometimes art imitates life. And sometimes art comes to life... With Disney's Magic Artist Studio, a follow-up to the original Disney's Magic Artist, anything you can imagine, you can bring to life! New 3-D technology delivers an awesome palette of tools and effects to help you create your own masterpiece on a living canvas. The sky's the limit when you draw with tools and paints that burst onto your screen and virtually drip with color. 

Dogz 4

They eat, sleep, play, and get into trouble--just like a real pup, but better, because these little guys are born house-trained! Choose from ten different Breedz of rambunctious Pupz, including poodles, chihuahas, and adorable mutts. Adopt as many Dogz you want, but don't forget to take care of them, because lonely puppies have been known to run away from home.

Matchbox Caterpillar Construction Zone CD-ROM & CAT Controller

It's time to get down and dirty with the virtual reality playset that puts you in the driver's seat in the ultimate of 3-D environments. Just slip the easy-to-use CAT controller over your keyboard and get to work! Turn on your machine with a flip of the key, move either joystick to go forward or backward, and use the center knob to activate the special function in each vehicle. 

LEGO Racers

It's an out-of-this-world adventure with Team LEGO, as you customize, build, and race your very own speedster. Build your dream car from the ground up, or choose from 20 pre-made models. The competition's fierce, but you're ready for the challenge as you race against LEGO's best drivers, or compete against a friend in the thrilling split-screen mode. Your mission's clear: to conquer the competition before facing the legendary Rocket Racer in the ultimate racing championship. Can anyone defeat LEGO's hero? 


Illustory is an award-winning activity kit that allows any child to be the author of a professionally typeset, 12-page hardbound book. Budding authors write, illustrate, and design their book, then send it to Chimeric in a postage-paid envelope to be bound and typeset. There's even a step-by-step guide that helps kids decide on the subject, theme, and characters of their story. They can let their imaginations run wild illustrating and writing a story using included markers and special book pages.

Brew Your Own Root Beer Kit

Brew your own old-fashioned, delicious root beer right at home. This little kit contains enough materials to make 1-4 gallons of custom-brewed root beer. It's an easy way to learn some tasty science. Just combine the root beer extract (the smell alone made our mouths water), champagne yeast, and some sugar in some warm water, stir, then bottle it up. About 2 weeks later, you can enjoy a frosty mug of your own root beer. 

Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit

Make gum from scratch! It's a real "hands-on" activity as you combine the ingredients by following the easy instructions. The kit includes chicle gum base (harvested from trees of the rain forest), confectioner's sugar, corn syrup, and two flavor packets. A microwave-safe pan for softening the gum base is also included. The only elements you need to supply are scissors to open the packets, a teacup or mug of hot or boiling water, a clean working surface (we recommend using paper plates), and perhaps some plastic utensils (it can get sticky!). The chicle gum base can be heated in the microwave or a pot of boiling water.

Steel Safe with Alarm - Classic Children's Toy Metal Safe

Keep your treasures safe from curious siblings with this hi-tech safe. The security features include a combination lock and a state-of-the-art wind-up alarm that is activated whenever the door is opened. It also includes a tray that separates coins from paper money. It's perfect for storing money, valuables, or secret diaries.

Inflatable Furniture - Inflatable Beanless Bag Chair (Confetti)

Peace, love, and inflatable furniture. Common, everyday chairs are no match for the comfort and kitschy fun of this inflatable chair and matching ottoman. Kick back and relax--the high backrest and big, comfy armrests give you plenty to sink into. It's roomy enough to hold big and small kids, not to mention any adults who may want to take a load off. And based on our experience, once you sit down, you may not want to get up. Made from heavy duty, see-through vinyl, it may take awhile to inflate (we definitely recommend enlisting the help of an electric pump), but hey, when you're done, you've got the perfect place to rest.

Mood Lamp

If you're in the mood to shed some new light in your room, build a glowing lamp with your very own scene (Trip out!). It's easy--with this kit you can design eight one-of-a-kind lampshades. First, have a grownup help you put the lightbulb into the wooden base of the lamp. Then get creative. Using the four markers included in the kit, draw and design shapes, pictures, characters, and more--it's all up to you! But don't limit yourself to just markers.

Tie Dye Kit

Tie-dying doesn't have to mean messy buckets of color and clothes that bleed in the wash. You can create a unique look for all types of natural fibers with these professional quality dyes. Soda Ash Dye Fixer keeps stay-fast colors brilliant even through the washing machine. Dye T-shirts, aprons, socks, even jeans. The kit comes with three bottles (sort of like ketchup bottles that squirt) of fuchsia, yellow, and turquoise dye powder--just add water. The dye can be used for up to two weeks after it is mixed. A fourth bottle lets you combine colors to make your own shade of green, purple, or orange.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Color Changing Nail Polish

Turn on the charm with this color changing nail polish that goes from subtle to sensational in the sunlight. Two bottles of SolarSation Nail Polish and two color-changing emery boards will make your next manicure a stroke of genius.