Sunday, October 31, 2021

Wooden Dump Truck, by Moover Toys

Nature/ Type:          Wooden ride-able truck

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  2- 3 year-old 

Who would love this: Vehicle lovers 

Our almost 2-year-old Miss B loves this wooden dump truck by Moover Toys. It’s small enough to be brought around for outdoor fun, yet sturdy enough for young kids to ride on and travel around like a real cool rider. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Ride-able Truck- I love that the cabin and trailer are attached in such a way to allow the truck to be steered and turned easily. Miss B had great fun riding this and changing direction from left to right and left again. 

(2) The Materials- the truck is made of veneer plywood, looks durable, and I love the natural wood colour (there is also a selection of red or blue design if you prefer something brighter). 

(3) Storage Compartment- the trailer has a ”secret” compartment for storage. The kids can pretend to be a little delivery rider or “Santa” with a truck. 

(4) Easy Assembling Without Need of Tools- the toys came in a flat pack and can be assembled without using any tools. There is also a video in YouTube that shows the process of putting the parts together. 

I love how pretty and cute this little truck looks. 

Enjoy the video! 

Monkey Blocks, by Popular Playthings

Nature/ Type:          Smart building blocks with hidden weight + cheeky monkeys 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Building blocks + puzzle lovers 

Today I want to share about 6 cheeky monkeys that do impossible stunts on some anti-gravity blocks! Monkey Blocks by Popular Playthings is another super clever game from a wide range of monkey series toys of the same brand. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Strange Structures - the 12  blocks can be arranged and stacked around in numerous anti-gravity, impossible and mind-boggling combinations. The secret? The hidden weights embedded within some of the blocks. The orange blocks are weighted on just one end, the green blocks have hidden weight in their middle, and the grey-blocks are entirely light-weight. By cleverly utilising the hidden weights, we can build gravity-defying structures and be amazed by the puzzling arrangements. My four-year-old loves the idea booklet, and has also created a few other absurd-looking towers. The process was real fun! 

(2) Cheeky Monkeys- I love the 6 monkeys with different poses. They sprinkle some humorous touches on the building game. 

(3) Logical Thinking- This is an “illogical” building game that encourages logical thinking. Nothing is impossible, we just need to find the “key” that makes it happens. I am loving the cleverness of the design and concept of these monkey blocks. 

Enjoy the video! 

Pat Bells Shelf, By PlayMe Toys

Nature/ Type:          Beautiful musical instrument 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  1 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Mini music lovers 

This Pat Bells Shelf by PlayMe Toys (designed and made in Taiwan) is another of my recent loves. Having learned music in full seven notes per octave (or what they call, heptatonic scale), I was a bit sceptical of what a five bells instrument can do. The discovery was mind-blowing. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) The Sound- Each of the bells produces sound that is vibrant, loud, clear, and purely magical! The 5 bells are set in a pentatonic (5 notes octave) ascending scale, and sound lovely regardless of how my two wild kids hit and bang on them. I am especially surprised to discover the number of songs that we can play using just 5 notes. This is joy! 

(2) Materials- the stand is made of beech wood. It’s durable, a bit heavy, and is a toy to be kept for some time. 

(3) Song Books- the set comes with a song book and sheets of colour-coded stickers for melodies making and recording. If you need more songs, you can also download additional songbook lovingly created by Tiny Tones , available from its website (and it’s free!). 

(4) No Tuning - No tuning is required for this instrument, so it’s easy to maintain. 

What I have in the pictures above is a toy library set, so the paints at the top of the bells are a little peeled off after numerous plays by many families, although the beautiful tune of the instrument is not affected. I saw that PlayMe Toys also produces “wooden pat bells” and other 8-bells instruments, which may be better options for some families, and I am eager to explore more of them! 

Enjoy the video! 

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Early Recycle sorting game, By Gogo Toys


Nature/ Type:           Wooden educational toy about recycling 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Unique wooden educational toy lovers 

Gogo Toys from Taiwan is another of my newfound favourite brands that makes me smile and nod and smile again. I am loving all the creative touches, uniqueness, and educative ideas incorporated in its toys. This Early Recycle sorting game is one of my personal favourites. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Unique Recycling Concept- The concept is unique and clever. The set comes with 30 wooden tiles printed with different “rubbish” images, and one long wooden box separated into 5 recyclable-item compartments - paper, metals, plastic, glass, and leftovers. I love that this game is educative and generates conversations. I have loads of discussions with my four-year-old whilst playing with this toy. For example, when deciding where the baby milk bottle should go, we discuss about the usual materials of a bottle (plastic and glass). When deciding the correct bin for a bag of popcorn, we talked about whether we should first chuck the popcorn into the “leftover” bin, and then the packaging into a “paper” bin. I love all the questions asked, chats about landfill, and it’s fascinating to see how a young kid today approaches the issue of recycling. 

(2) Wooden materials and design- the toy is solid, durable, and looks beautiful. 

(3) Training of Fine Motor Skills - My almost two-year-old Miss B has no idea what recycling means yet, but she is loving the idea of inserting the tiles into the bins and taking them out again. This toy keeps both of my kids busy and engaged! 

Enjoy the video: 

PlayShapes, by Millergoodman

Nature/ Type:          Beautiful and artistic wooden blocks 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: block-building lovers

Some toys are pieces of arts: they are amusing, invoke a little childhood nostalgia in our hearts, and bring simple joy. This is PlayShapes by Millergoodman , a set of beautifully crafted wooden building shapes that never fails to make me smile. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Whimsical, irregular shapes- The set has 74 wooden pieces of geometric, whimsical and irregular shapes. We can build 2D images of silly faces, playful animals or basic objects like a rocket or boat. We can also build them up vertically and make a 3D structure with bright colours. The only limit is your imagination. Both of my kids are loving all our fanciful and “no-rules” creations. 

(2) Two-sided blocks- I love that there are two-sides for each wooden piece; we can pick the painted side to give our art a pop of colours, or select the natural side for a more “wooden” feel. 

(3) The materials- the pieces are made of durable and environmental-friendly rubber wood. They are light-weight, smooth on the surfaces, and look great in term of craftsmanship. 

I think everyone deserves a little Millergoodman in life. 

Enjoy the video! 

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Magnatab A to Z Uppercase Magnetic Tracing Board, By Kid O

Nature/ Type:          Clever writing board with magnetic stylus 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Parents looking for writing/ tracing educational materials 

 This Magnatab A to Z Uppercase magnetic tracing board by Kid O is a BIG hit in this household. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Unique Magnetic Stylus & Board- it’s unique and gets the kids really interested in tracing. The magnetic stylus pulls the beads up with an audible click when we trace it over the letters. If we want to “erase” the writings, we just need to rub our fingers over the beads to push them down. My four-year-old enjoys playing with it, my almost two-year-old (who hasn’t even learnt how to hold a pen yet) is obsessed with it. She loves moving the stylus and her fingers over the board randomly, watching the beads pop up and go down over and over again. 

(2) Sequence of Writing- There are directional arrows showing the kids the sequence of writing the uppercase letters, which is a great feature. 

(3) Portability - the board is not too large, not too heavy, easy to bring around for a car trip. This learning toy keeps both of my kids occupied for quite a while. 

(4) Different Types of Writing Boards- Apart from Uppercase, Kid O also produces lower case letters, numbers, cursive letters for such similar magnetic board. 

Some possible downsides I found about this toy: The board is made of ABS plastic and the writing board is white in colour. It would look dirty if the toy is not maintained properly. There are also problems with some of the beads: they don’t pop up easily and sometimes we can’t push them down, which can be a bit frustrating. 

Also, the stylus is not securely attached to the writing board once removed from the slot, so there is a risk that the pen might go MIA if you have some wild forgetful kids at home. 

Enjoy the video! 

Stacking Vehicles, By Melissa & Doug

Nature/ Type:          Wooden vehicles 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Vehicle lovers  

Melissa & Doug has these cute stacking vehicles. In the pictures above are a bulldozer and cement mixer from the construction vehicles set, a police car and an ambulance from the emergency vehicles set. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Wooden Materials- like most other Melissa and Doug toys, they are colourful, well-made, solid and sturdy wooden toys. 

(2) Puzzles that can be taken apart- each vehicle can be taken apart and rebuilt again and again. They are puzzles, but also moving vehicles. The construction set is a little bit more complicated than the emergency set. My four year-old can easily stack them up correctly. My 1 year-old ++ Miss B has no idea how to do it right, but she enjoys stacking the pieces randomly and has a big laugh. 

(3) Moveable joints- I love those little flexible touches on the construction vehicles. The mixer drum on the cement truck is spin-able, and the blade on the bulldozer is lift-able. The wheels can be rolled around like any vehicle toys. Both of my kids love and enjoy playing with these chunky and separable vehicles. 

Enjoy the video! 

Cash Register, by I’m Toy

Nature/ Type:          Wooden cash register 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Kids who love pretend play  

I have seen quite a few cash register toys in the market. This wooden one from the Thailand brand “I’m Toy” is one of the more sturdy-looking one which can possibly last for many years and be passed down to other families with kids in future. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Wooden Materials- just like most of the other “I’m Toy” wooden products, this cash register is made of durable and eco-friendly rubber wood and painted with non-toxic and child-safe paints. 

(2) Fun Features- there are few uniqueness in this toy: the buttons are press-able in a soft and slow manner (something which my youngest kid really enjoys doing); the barcode scanner makes a squeaky beeping sound, and the pullout drawer produces a soft and tiny bell sound when it is slammed shut. The microphone is bendable. My favourite feature is the re-attachable cloth receipts that can be rolled up at the holder. I wish there were a bigger roll of receipts as it is really fun to tear the pieces of cloth out from the adhesive snap. There are also a wooden credit card and some wooden coins for pretend shopping play. 

(3) No battery required- I love that we don’t need any battery to play with this set. 

It would be more “complete” if the cash register is functional with solar-powered calculator together with number-display, but these extra features are probably not necessary since the toy is already awesome enough. 

Enjoy the video! 

Monday, October 25, 2021

Bugs Building, By Early Learning Centre

Nature/ Type:           Jenga game in a cute twist 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️  

Recommended age:  3 - 5 year-old  

Who would love this: Young kids who love a cute games

My almost 2 year-old Miss B burst out giggling when she saw these blocks with cute bug eyes. We had loads of fun playing with these modified Jenga game. This is Bugs Building game by Early Learning Centre. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) CUTE: They are just toooo cute to look at! Really, who can resist those cheeky eyes gazing out so adorably from the layers of block tower? 

(2) Jenga game with a twist- It’s a Jenga game but with a little twists. We need to throw a colour dice to determine which block to be pulled out. I am loving the sharp colours. I think this is a nice game for really young kids to practise colour recognition. 

(3) Light weight blocks- the blocks are hollow within and very light-weight, which may or may not be a good thing. It’s perfectly safe and “pain-less” even when the tower collapses directly on the kids, but it also means that it’s harder to pull out some of the blocks without shifting the whole tower, especially those blocks at the corners and lower tiers. This is kind of frustrating (sometimes we “cheated” by holding on and straightening the tower when pulling some blocks out), but the kids love watching the tower collapses and makes a loud BANG! So, no one complains. 

(4) Versatility- apart from a Jenga game, we can also play with these blocks in many other creative ways. Grouping them in colours, queuing them up like a train, or, like what my almost 2 year-old like to do, build it up and just knock it down- CRASH!!! 

Enjoy the video! 

Friday, October 8, 2021

Dino Sahara, by I’m Toy

Nature/ Type:           Cute wooden dinosaurs

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️  

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Baby dinosaur lovers! 

I’m in my Dino-mood these few days 🤣. I have another dinosaur toy to share, but this is a much cuter baby version that me smile 😊. This is the Dino Sahara set, with two add-on dinosaur buddies from one of my favourite wooden toys brand from Thailand - “I’m Toy”. 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Prehistoric Scene- the original Dino Sahara set comes with a baby velociraptor, a double sided tray with a desert landscape, two stones, a small cactus, a bigger cactus, and a volcano. I love that the set prepares a scene for a prehistoric imaginative play and story-telling. 

(2) Baby dinosaurs - We can also give the lonely dinosaur some friends, because the same brand also sells individual dinosaurs that match the design and materials of this Sahara set. In the picture, I have a green baby brachiosaurus and a blue baby stegosaurus added to the set. I am not sure about the actual habits and characteristics of these prehistoric creatures, but they do look happy and cute playing together over here. 

(3) Wooden Materials- The toys are made of eco-friendly, sustainable rubber-wood, finished with non-toxic child-safe paint. The toy is well-made and nicely designed. I love that we can move the legs of the dinosaurs. I also like the extra touches such as the soft and flexible felt-materials on the stegosaurs and volcano, and the double-sided landscape tray. 

Enjoy the video! 

Imaginext Jurassic World Mega Mouth T Rex, by Fisher Price

Nature/ Type:           Super cool dinosaur 

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  3 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Dinosaur lovers! 

This is one for all dinosaur fans who can’t get enough of Jurassic Park, or anything gigantically scary but fun! This is Imaginext Jurassic World Mega Mouth T Rex from Fisher Price. 🦖 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Super cool and realistic dinosaur features- I can’t stop admiring the details of the T Rex: its huge and long jaw, the terrifying large tongue, the realistic scales of its skin, its ferociously cold eyes, the different layers on its ginormous tail, the proportion of its legs and front arms etc. I’m loving the thoughtfulness and attention-to-detail of this toy! 

(2) Actions-packed- the flexible joints and the fantastically-designed handle. The handle is easy to control, we can create various movements and actions, from “roaring”, chomping, stretching its neck up, bending down, and picking up the poor little figure with his mouth. It’s a toy that can generate thrilling action-packed scenes! 

(3) Hidden container at the back - We can easily retrieved the swallowed “foods” from the T-Rex lid-covered back. My one-year-old found it funny and kept laughing each time when she picked up the figure from the “hidden” container. My four-year-old was eager to try out and see what other objects the dinosaur can chomp down and swallow. It turns out to be quite a lots. 

(4) No battery required- I also love that the T Rex has no sound. So we don’t need any battery to operate it, and definitely don’t need to listen to any annoying machinery-roaring sound all day! 

This is one toy that encourages creative story-telling, and I love its size and agility. And you can roar all you like! 

Enjoy the video! 

Long Legs- Funny Math Game, by Chalk and Chuckles

 Nature/ Type:           Mathematics educational resources (adjustable rulers)

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  6 - 9 year-old 

Who would love this: Kids who love to measure and count 

This whimsical “Long Legs - Funny Math Game” by Chalk and Chuckles is another latest happy find for this family! 

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) Making mathematics fun! - This toy makes mathematics giggly fun! We have so much laughter competing to make a long leg monster or a short leg monster (affectionately known as Leggy and Teeny), by throwing the dices, and doing the addition and subtraction. Move the slider up and we will soon get a 50 cm long-leg and cute-looking monster. And if you are up to some subtraction practice, move the slider down and let’s have a race to make a shortest-leg monster ever! This game is perfect for my four-year-old who just started with his basic counting and simple mathematics learning. 

(2) Learning Resources - the set comes with four rulers of different colours, two dices, and also some challenge cards. This is one set that can be kept and used for quite a few more years. 

(3) Materials- the rulers are made of wood, looks durable and really pretty. 

(4) Fun Rulers- We can also use the rulers to show “height” of different objects. The other day, we read that bee hummingbird is around 5.5 cm in length. We took out the monster ruler and checked the measurement. The boy thought that the book must have “made a mistake” after realising how short a 5.5 cm is! 🤣

However, if there is one thing I can change, I wish that the ruler can stand and with a slider that can hold still at wherever it stops. 

Enjoy the video! 

Rope Abacus, by BAJO

Nature/ Type:           Wooden stackable toy with a twist

Rating:                     ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

Recommended age:  2 year-old ++ 

Who would love this: Parents who love neat and tidy toys + young kids 

This is Rope Abacus by BAJO wooden toys, a unique and colourful counting toy for young

Why I love ❤️ this toy: 

(1) No Missing Pieces - the most obvious reason: this is a toy that can guarantee zero-chance of missing pieces incident. All parents rejoice, no more looking under couch and beds searching for runaway stackable rings. This rope abacus, as its name suggests, has ropes holding all the little rings together. Packing up is easy. 

(2) Materials - the colours and the beautiful materials. According to online resources, all Bajo toys are lovingly crafted in Poland using FSC certified wood. They are eco-friendly, and finished with non-toxic paint. Any waste wood from manufacturing process is turned into fuel briquettes. I love how sturdy, durable, and high quality the toy looks and feels. 

(3) Skills - stackable rings are useful to promote mathematics skills and hand-eye coordination. 

My one-year-old wasn’t too sure what to do with this rope abacus. My four-year-old likes it, but doesn’t spend as much time on this as I would have hoped. I feel that there is some hidden potentials in this toy that we have yet to explore and discover. But in any event, the fact that I don’t need to waste anytime “packing” up this toy, THAT is real GOLD. 

Enjoy the video!