Monday, November 9, 2009

Toys for the Z Man

Funny, when I first started this blog, I thought that it would mostly be about all of the great things I have found for my kids that make all of our lives better. But, it has evolved to something else entirely. I know that I discuss by babies and some of the things that I have found for them, but it is certainly not the norm. However, I have to share some of our latest and greatest here.

Let me start out by saying that my kids are extremely fortunate. Not only do we adore them and shower them with love and affection, but we are able to provide for their needs and wants. And, on top of that, their grandparents do the same and send boxes of gifts all of the time. It is like a birthday here every week. We are all really, really lucky and try to instill in our kids a sense of gratitude and generosity as well.

Still, in the past few days, the Z Man has made out even better than usual. On Saturday, we were going to meet my friend in Round Top, TX. (She lives in Austin, and it is an adorable town halfway between us and has become our little spot.) En route to Round Top, we stopped at the Le Creuset outlet (didn't buy anything) and out of the corner of his eye, Z spotted something. "Mommy! Let's go over to that toy shop. I see something that I have been wanting!" I looked and sure enough was this Dalmatian race game that he first coveted when we saw it at a toy shop in Vail last winter. Knowing that it was under $20 and impressed that he had remembered it all this time, I bought it for him. It is not very interactive, but is cute and sort of mesmerizing, though the sound is rather annoying. But, he has been loving it.

In fact, it has been his obsession for the past 48 hours until it was package time again. You see, I subscribe to a number of online sample sales: Gilt , RueLaLa, ideeli, The Mini Social, and Hautelook. It could be a full time job scouring these sales each day, but I try to only look if it is something that I am really excited about. (Send me a message if you need an invite code to any of these, btw.)

A couple of weeks ago, I saw that Hautelook had Hape toys and I checked it out. The prices were great, and, even better, I had some store credit with them. So, I ordered a game and an intro quadrilla set. As soon as I saw the quadrilla set, I knew that the Z Man would go bananas over it. It is just so right up his little alley to build tracks and study the motion of the little marbles. My little man might not have much gross motor coordination, but his ability to engineer a track is incredible. He is thrilled and delighted each time he attempts a new configuration and is really smart about knowing how the marbles will move. I am truly impressed with how he uses his brain and his hands to play with this toy. And, I haven't seen him this excited about a toy since, well, since his grandparents sent him a Lionel train set (!) a few months back.

This little intro set is perfect for a three year old and was only $15 from Hautelook! Only problem is that the marbles are "baby chokers" so we have to be extra careful.

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