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Holiday Giveaways # 13 – Annabel Karmel Kitchen

Four days ago, a British woman named Annabel Karmel won a Lifetime Achievement Award at the prestigious Mother & Baby Awards in the UK. For any mom who has already been introduced to Annabel Karmel, this will not come as a surprise. She is the most prolific and progressive author of cookbooks for parents and children in the world. She ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 12 – Knitted Donuts 5-Pack

I have been ogling these knitted donuts at trade shows for several years. Until very recently, the company did not offer any retail packaging, and our stores are not exactly look-but-don’t-touch sorts of places. Beautiful handmade toys sitting unprotected on a shelf is not usually a recipe for success. I was thrilled when I heard that these donuts were now ... Read More »

Is it a boy-toy or a girl-toy?

I wish there were less gender discrimination in toys. Toy manufacturers have little choice but to gear their packaging designs and marketing towards specific genders when the product warrants it, but that means it’s up to parents to keep an open mind. My son is only 16 months old, but he’s already far more obsessed with trucks than either of ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 11 – Bruder Trucks

I hadn’t heard of Bruder trucks until we were opening Magic Beans. At Toy Fair that first year, I was introduced to the brand and learned that these were THE trucks to sell. I still remember watching in awe as they demonstrated the Fire Truck, with its working water hose. The attention to detail is just amazing. On the Bruder ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 10 – 100pc Magna Tiles

The first time I wrote about Magna-Tiles in 2007, I called them one of “the best kept secrets in the world of toys.” These days, the word is out and we can hardly keep these in stock. But the clear Magna-Tiles are always much more popular than the solid ones. I was on that bandwagon too – at first. The ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 9 – Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair

There isn’t a lot to say about the Tripp Trapp that I haven’t already said at some point or other on this blog. But as we get closer to Thanksgiving, we get a lot of grandparents asking about what they need to host their grandchildren for the holidays. My parents have used Tripp Trapp chairs for 5 years, beginning when ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 8 – Woodstock Folk Guitar & Case

We’ve already covered my lack of innate talent for piano, but we haven’t even talked about the guitar. My musical mother (who you may recall plays the piano) is also a gifted guitarist. Early memories abound of singing “Blowin’ in the Wind” as she played beside me. In college, I decided it was high time to learn how to play. ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 7 – Follow Me Fred

It’s my job to look at a product and know whether or not it will sell. But the truth is, I’m not an oracle. Most of the time, I have a strong inclination one way or another, but it’s rare that I see something and know unquestionably that it will be a success. Follow Me Fred was one of those ... Read More »

And one more makes four

We are pleased to announce that we’ve signed a lease to open our fourth location. The newest Magic Beans outpost will be in Cambridge, MA in Huron Village, an eclectic, charming neighborhood known for its family-friendliness and unique, locally-owned shops. We will be taking the space that was previously occupied by the venerable Henry Bear’s Park (another toy store) for ... Read More »

Holiday Giveaways # 6 – Corolle Calin Doll

The Corolle booth at Toy Fair is my husband’s favorite stop each year. Not because he likes to play with dolls, but because he likes French champagne (and really, who doesn’t?). It’s become an annual tradition for him to lounge at a table, happily sipping champagne while I (usually either pregnant or breastfeeding) circulate through the product displays choosing dolls, ... Read More »

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