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Category Archives: Arts & Crafts

Role Models


Kids learn about the world by watching the adults around them, and they love to put their observations into action (even when you wish they wouldn’t). That means it’s important to set a good example for your children with everyday kindness and generosity, and by including them in the activities you enjoy the most. Melissa & Doug Fire Chief Role ... Read More »

Craft kits for a chilly weekend


If you’ve been enjoying a staycation this week while the kids are out of school, chances are you’re looking for activities to keep them busy as this (or any) weekend approaches. Craft kits are a perfect way to pass the time, especially when it’s cold outside. Here are five of my recent favorites, and all but the last one are ... Read More »

Confessions of a Toy Copywriter – and a Cool Giveaway

For almost a year now, I’ve had a bit of an obsession. Can I trust you with my secret? OK, I love Sticky Mosaics by Orb Factory. There, I said it. As a writer for Magic Beans, I get to play with all the toys I want. I stack blocks, deal cards, enjoy craft projects, play with teeny animal figurines, ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 4 – Alex Art Spinner & Cuckoo Clock

2009 will go down in history as the year the toy industry (and everyone else in the world) discovered social media. More and more of our vendors have jumped on the bandwagon and are successfully using Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to promote their products. Technology has been particularly slow to grasp many toy companies, but I was particularly impressed with ... Read More »

Day 18 – Melissa & Doug Art Easel with Companion Set

I am an enormous fan of Melissa & Doug. Most parents are probably familiar with their products, as you’ll find them on the shelves of virtually any store that caters to kids. Over the years, I’ve had the chance to get to know Melissa, Doug and their amazing team. They are, of hundreds of amazing companies we work with, the ... Read More »

Paint like a pro with Powder Art

Hi there, this is Sarah, filling in for Sheri while she continues to await the arrival of baby #3. If you’re looking for a fun, indoor activity to keep kids occupied during some of the rainy days this summer, we’ve found something new that is a fun variation on an old theme. Crescent Cardboard has crafted a “painting” kit that ... Read More »

Retro Cool

Look what’s back! The Snoopy Sno Cone Maker has been rereleased by Sababa Toys, and it’s exactly the product you and I remember so fondly. Originally released in 1979, this was a runaway bestseller and a summer fixture in millions of homes (mine included). If you never had one, basically you pop some ice cubes into a compartment at the ... Read More »

Supersize them

Pipe cleaners have been a craft-time favorite for generations, but Brain Noodles take the fun to a whole new proportion. These are basically very chunky pipe cleaners, so they’re easy for kids of all age to handle and manipulate. I liked them at Toy Fair, but it was the samples I brought back to my kids that sealed the deal. ... Read More »


For aspiring handy types, there’s a new line of constructable kids furniture that’s designed to provide plenty of gratification in exchange for relatively little effort. These new kits, by imadethat, come with wood pieces, sandpaper, simple tools and plenty of paint. The components are sturdy, and the finished product will be a source of pride for many years to come. ... Read More »