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Scott’s Toy Box: Christmas Thoughts

Even though it’s November, everyone is talking about Christmas. They were even talking about it back in October and frankly, I have my Christmas list ready all year round. Here are some toys that you may want to think about when picking out gifts for this year.

First we have the Smart Trike. I know you’re thinking, “A stroller isn’t a toy.” Although that might be true, the Smart Trike starts off being a stroller but turns into a tricycle, so it grows with your child and gets more use than a plain stroller. It has a sun visor to keep your child out of the sun and a bucket in the back to tote stuff around. You do have to assemble it from pictures, so if you’ve spent any time building Legos then this will be second nature. To get the Smart Trike, go to flaghouse.com and search for #38959.

Next we have Brik-A-Bloks. This will change the way your child builds a fort. Basically they are flat panels that lock together to build blocks. Creations can get pretty big so you may need to account for space when building; however, when deconstructed, the panels don’t take much space at all. When I first looked at the pictures, I thought that these were probably only good for the younger kids, because the pictures showed kids crawling through blocks that were one panel-sized. But, once I started playing with them I realized that if I had enough panels I could even make a fort for myself (and I’m 6 feet). The panels come in three colors (red, blue and yellow) and you can buy packs of 46 and 26 panels. You can find them at brikablok.com.

Lastly, there is the Matchbox Croc Escape Pop Up Adventure. This playset is just one of many Pop Up Adventure playsets you can find from Matchbox. With Croc Escape, you get one Matchbox car to venture through the swamp to find the treasure. However, your car can get snagged by the giant crocodile head that is waiting in the middle of the playset. I love the crocodile part of this playset. Placing the car at the top of the ramp to have it shoot down into the crocodile’s mouth is fun to watch. It takes me back to when my parents got me a track that hooked onto the back of a chair and had a loop and ramp that the car would (for the most part) maneuver through. The drawback to the playset is that the set track isn’t as smooth as others. I guess it’s a part of the setting (there aren’t many smooth roads in the swamp), but I wish it were a little easier to guide the car around. The playset does fold into a box and the car and accessories stow nicely in it. You can find it in your local toy stores.

If you’re looking for some unique gifts this Christmas, here are some websites to check out:

Olivekids.com
This website has home décor for children, from bedding and shower curtains to wall clocks and placemats. With all their products, you choose the design theme and in some cases, have the item personalized.

2cheekymonkeys.etsy.com
This storefront offers gifts created from recycled board games, VHS movie cases, record covers and books. Each product is handmade and unique. They mostly sell journals, but they also have a few wall clocks and purses.

Kamibashi.com
This website has many products, but the most interesting is their homemade key chains. My favorite is The String Doll Gang line. Each doll helps you do something- for example, Finnegan makes sure that your luck is always Irish.

Thinkgeek.com
This website is for the geeks. From shirts that locate the best WiFi signal to shower heads that light up red or blue depending on the temperature, they have it. They also have a section for geek kids from 1 to 13 years old.

About The Author

M Scott Anderson

M. Scott Anderson grew up in Hattiesburg and now currently lives in Jackson. He went to college at USM and got a degree in Mass Communications with a minor in Creative Writing. He has always loved to be a storyteller. Friends from childhood would tell him of stories he would say he’s writing that included them in it. He enjoys comic books and superheroes and loves having friends over to play both table top games and video games.

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