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  • Spilling The Beans - Insider's Guide to Baby Gear - Magic Beans

Summer reading lists are WAY cooler than they used to be!

Teachers call it the “summer slide”: three months without reinforcement can cause kids to forget key reading skills they picked up over the course of the school year. That’s why summer reading is so important, and you want to do everything you can to encourage kids to pick up a book every chance they get! The key is to ensure ... Read More »

The possibilities of playtime: 40 years of Playmobil

For over 40 years, the diminutive, smiling people of Playmobil have been inspiring children’s imaginative adventures. In memory of company founder Horst Brandstaetter, who passed away last week, here’s a whirlwind tour through Playmobil sets both old and new. Designer Hans Beck considered the figurines to be the most important part of the Playmobil formula. From Wikipedia: “Beck spent three ... Read More »

What’s the difference between dolls and action figures?

The word “doll” is weirdly fraught for a very straightforward concept: Dictionary.com defines a doll as “a small figure representing a baby or other human being, especially for use as a child’s toy.” Which is to say that while not every doll is an action figure, every action figure is, by definition, a doll. But while I was reading about a new truck-and-action-figure playset from Learning Resources, I found myself wondering: what makes a ... Read More »

A Stroller Romance: The Thule Urban Glide vs the BOB Flex

The rain beat against the sidewalk, and cars streamed past, as Ashley gazed into the store window. Her two loves stood side by side in the display, stoic and silent, unaware of the turmoil that raced inside Ashley’s troubled heart. “I’m sorry,” Ashley whispered. “I just can’t decide.”   Ashley met BOB on her first day as a new employee ... Read More »

Getting ready for day camp: a beginner’s guide

Kids grow fast, and there’s a new transition every day: graduating from an infant car seat to a convertible car seat, from a bottle to a sippy cup, from diapers to big-kid underpants, and so on. A child’s first day camp experience comes with its own transitions as well, especially if you start young. It’s an exciting time, but a ... Read More »