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Category Archives: Toys

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 »

Ty Girlz are here

I mentioned at Toy Fair that a lot of toy companies have been, ahem, inspired by the immense success of Webkinz to create their own plush toys with online tie-ins. How does the old adage go? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery? Well, I’m sure Ganz (the company behind Webkinz) isn’t exactly enjoying the compliment. But Webkinz have been ... Read More »

Like clean clothes?

This is one of those products that’s just parent-powered simple genius. If you’ve ever watched a kid eat an ice cream cone or popsicle, you’ve almost certainly cringed as the drips and dribbles traveled along chins, arms, fingers and, ultimately, onto nice, crisp clean clothing. No amount of diligent attention with baby wipes can prevent the mess that inevitably prevails. ... Read More »

Have wheels, will travel

Get this: the Trunki is a hard suitcase on wheels that doubles as a ride-on toy. And if that weren’t cool enough, there’s a strap you can use to tow weary tots through the airport. It’s brilliant, plain and simple. And when they come in to our store, I will be the very first on line to buy one. Two, ... Read More »

How’s your poker face?

At Toy Fair, we picked up a sample of Spy Alley, a game that is not new, but we’d heard great things about it. The reputation is well-deserved – I thought it was a really nice game. Very well thought out and unique, fun to play and appealing to a wide age range. Although it is rated for ages 8 ... Read More »

Strategery in Phoenix

I’m back from my vacation – thanks for bearing with me while I took a break from writing. While we were kicking back in Phoenix, I took the opportunity to do some toy testing with my kids and my family. We are big time game players, a trait that seems to be genetically hardwired, so when my extended family gets ... Read More »

Say it with a French accent

The newest game from Blue Orange has just arrived. It’s Froggy Boogie, a memory game for ages 4 and up. The idea is simple – move the baby frogs around the lily pads without being seen by the adult frogs in the middle of the pond. Here’s where the game gets a bit bizarre: the memory component of the game ... Read More »

What’s with this fairy?

When the binky fairy came a few weeks ago, you may recall that she left my daughter a fairy doll. This doll has quickly become a beloved companion. Today, this same little girl turned 3. Yesterday, my mother-in-law brought her to Magic Beans to choose a birthday present, and don’t you know? She came home with another fairy doll, identical ... Read More »

Bedlam time

Get excited. The Bedlam Puzzle is a 3D puzzle that has taken the UK by storm. It’s basically 13 oddly shaped pieces that fit into a square box. There are, in fact, over 19,186 different ways to make them fit into a perfect square. But there are so many possible combinations that it’s actually incredibly challenging to find even a ... Read More »

Bananagrams Split

No, it’s not a stuffed banana. Bananagrams is a great new word game that’s sort of a takeoff on Scrabble. Players are “dealt” a predetermined number of letter tiles, and then each player uses his/her letters to create a personal assortment of intersecting words. As the letters dealt get used, more letters are taken from the pile, and when the ... Read More »

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