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    $199.99
    1. LEGO Mindstorms: Robotics Invention
    $34.99
    2. Mozart Magic Cube
    $8.49
    3. Barbie as The Princess and The
    $24.99
    4. Butterfly Garden
    $29.99
    5. Dora the Explorer: Magic Hair
    $29.99
    6. Butterfly Pavilion
    $29.99
    7. Grow to Pro Basketball
    $19.99
    8. Animal Planet Jumbo Dino Playset
    $29.99
    9. Easy Score Basketball Set
    $21.99
    10. Tonka Mighty Front Loader
    $29.99
    11. My Little Pony: Celebration Castle
    $19.99
    12. Barbie as The Princess and The
    $199.99
    13. ESPN Game Station
    $8.49
    14. Barbie as The Princess and The
    $19.99
    15. Design Your Own Soccer Ball Kit
    $19.99
    16. Tot Sports Golf Set
    $79.99
    17. Thomas & Friends Roundhouse
    $24.99
    18. Tonka Mighty Backhoe
    $15.99
    19. Butterflies Kit
    $49.99
    20. Animal Alley 43" Darby Dog

    1. LEGO Mindstorms: Robotics Invention System 2.0
    by LEGO Systems, Inc
    Toy
    -- our price: $199.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005NLID
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Many high-tech toys start with a fun and fascinating idea only to make it frustratingly complicated in the execution. Leave it to LEGO to make a technologically advanced toy fun to play with. The enormous 718-piece LEGO Mindstorms Robotic Invention System lets you construct a variety of moving robot vehicles and then program them from your Windows 98- or Windows Me-compatible computer. The robots are all based around a bright yellow basic unit, which serves as the functional heart of whatever is being built. The brick receives commands from the computer via an infrared tower unit. The computer interface is incredibly user-friendly and intuitive. What's most impressive about the system, however, is the variety of robots that can be built. There are detailed instructions for each one, and since these are LEGOs, builders are free to come up with an endless variety. --John Moe ... Read more

    Reviews (76)

    5-0 out of 5 stars rocks
    This toy rocks!!!!!!!!! you get to build a robot, program it, and add sensors!!!!!!!!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Invention, Robotics, Computer Programming
    If you want your child to take the steps necessary to prosper in the future, this is the kit to purchase.

    The kids of my generation had telescopes, microscopes and chemistry sets.We only could dream of building and programming a functioning robot!

    It truly will create a positive mindstorm in your child !!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Windows XP fix
    With regard to users having problems using this kit with windows XP.The dreaded freeze problem will only occur on computers using hyper thread processers.(...)

    Save this zip file to your harddrive.You should have previously installed the mindstorms software and the USB tower.Unplug your USB tower, restart your machine and follow the installation instructions.The freeze issue should now be a thing of the past. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Construction    2. Building Sets    3. Electronic    4. Motors    5. Robotics   


    2. Mozart Magic Cube
    by Munchkin
    Toy
    list price: $29.99 -- our price: $34.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00004TFLB
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Music stimulates the brain and encourages early learningskills. This interactive cube lets children choose from any combinationof five different instruments--harp, French horn, piano, flute, andviolin--to collaborate on eight Mozart tunes. A solo flute might playan excerpt from "Ah! Vous Dirai-je, Maman (Twinkle, Twinkle)," or aFrench horn intone a theme from The Marriage of Figaro. Otherchoices include "Country Dance #5," "Come Sweet May," "Der Vogelfanger"(from The Magic Flute), "March in D," "Landler," and "LàCi Darem la Mano" (from Don Giovanni). Press the "orchestra"button and hear all the instruments play together. As the songs play,each selected instrument button flashes to the beat. The sound is notorchestral quality, but you get a fair electronic approximation of eachinstrument. Operates on three AA batteries (not included). --TamiHoriuchi ... Read more

    Features

    • Features musical instrument sounds
    • 8 Mozart compositions included
    • Winner of Dr. Toy and Parents' Choice awards
    • For all ages

    Reviews (140)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Toy
    We received this toy as a gift when my son was about 2 weeks old. Even then he would accidently set it off with his little jerks and spasms (it is extremely sensitive)and he seemed to enjoy it.It is loud, but it never frightened him and he was brand new.By the time he was three months old he was purposefully setting it off and now he's almost two years old and he still loves it.He is more interested in the way he can make only certain instruments play and how the same song sounds different if a different instrument plays by itself. He recently cracked it though, but we have no idea how.(It is made of very durable construction, so I can't imagine what he must have done to it, but then he is very hard on his toys)We just noticed it broken in his room one day.But, after two years of daily play I'd say it gave our family a good run.I have a new son due in four months and I can't imagine not buying this toy again.I highly recommend this toy.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Boring toy
    My daughter got this for Christmas when she was about 6 mos old.She rarely ever plays with it.She was slightly amused with this toy for a month or two.She never plays with it now.When she did show interest in it, it only lasted a few moments.The music does get a little annoying because my daughter liked it when all instruments would play at the same time.Nothing special about this toy and it's loud.Would not recommend.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fabulous toy
    My 6 month old is captivated by this toy. He loves to hear the music and it's easy enough for him to press the various sides. The music and the lights hold his attention. This actually belonged to his now 5 year old sister and it's held up well in the five years we've owned. I highly recommend it. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Electronic    2. Baby and Infant    3. Electronic Learning Aids    4. Activity    5. Musical    6. Construction    7. Blocks    8. Music    9. Learning    10. Electronic Learning Aids (ELA)   


    3. Barbie as The Princess and The Pauper: Princess Anneliese Doll
    by Mattel
    Toy (29 August, 2004)
    list price: $19.99 -- our price: $8.49
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0002L9HOW
    Sales Rank: 6
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (29)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Finally a modest Barbie
    I have two daughters,a 6 year old and a 4 year old.It has been a struggle finding dolls they can play with that are beautiful, but still modest in their clothing and looks.My girls love this doll and I'm excited to give them a role model that I agree with.As for the old concern of the Barbies' figure being unrealistic, I grew up playing with Barbies and still gained a realistic understanding that a Barbies' figure is unrealistic.It's a toy.Children understand that if the parents explain it to them.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Lovely!
    My three year old daughter loves this barbie doll. She has Erika also and loves it too. She plays with these more than her other barbies probably because they sing and she pretends they are sisters. I help her maintain her barbies though; she can be a little rough. Over all good by for barbie fans.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Barbie Doll
    I bought this doll as a gift and was very happy when she arrived.

    She is even prettier than in the picture and very well made. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Princesses   


    4. Butterfly Garden
    by Imaginarium
    Toy
    list price: $24.99 -- our price: $24.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000ISC5
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Did you know that painted ladies (the butterflies, that is) taste with their feet and have 10,000 eyes? You and your kids will be fascinated by all you learn about these beautiful creatures with the Butterfly Garden from Insect Lore. The kit comes with a relatively easy-to-assemble observation chamber; supplies for feeding the butterflies (you provide only sugar and water); an informative booklet of clear instructions and butterfly facts; and a certificate for three to five free painted lady caterpillars. The metamorphosis from larva to butterfly takes about three weeks from when you receive the caterpillar larvae (which arrive in a small container with all the nutrients they need). Your children can watch the larvae increase dramatically in size, form chrysalides, and finally emerge into full-fledged painted ladies (it's suggested that they release the butterflies after a few days of observation). This would make a wonderfulactivity for families with kids of any age, but younger children will need help assembling the observationchamber and reading the instruction booklet. (Note: The manufacturer recommends that butterflies should not be set free in temperatures lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.) --Rachel Radway ... Read more

    Reviews (65)

    1-0 out of 5 stars DEAD BUGS
    I purchased this for my 7 year old daughter for christmas. I was guarenteed 3 live larve.They are all dead and I can not get ahold of the company. I would rate this a big Zero

    5-0 out of 5 stars Butterfly Garden
    My sister gave this to my 8 year old daughter for her birthday.I also have a 4 year old daughter.This is one of the best gifts my children have ever received!From the start, both of my children were enthralled with the metamorposis from caterpillar to butterfly.The bonus is that there is very little that is required of parents except to make sure the instructions are followed.The caterpillars come in a plastic container that has all the food they require to grow and change.Even though one of the chrysalides fell off the paper disc under the lid, it still was able to continue metamorphosis at the bottom of the butterfly observatory.We just released our three beautiful painted lady butterflies yesterday after three weeks of wonder and excitement.Luckily my daughter's birthday is in July so we could release our butterflies when the weather is warm and the flowers are in full bloom.I recommend that you keep your butterflies safe in their observation chamber for at least two days.Two butterflies emerged before the third one did and I was afraid they weren't eating the food I provided (sugar water).Not wanting the first two to starve, I had my daughters release all of them less than a day after the third butterfly emerged.That third butterfly didn't seem ready to fly off yet and stayed in the garden on a post unmoving for a long while. I watched it to make sure it was unharmed and breathed a sigh of relief when it finally flew off.I couldn't have asked for a more fun and educational gift!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
    I purchased this for my daughter's 4th birthday. The caterpillars arrived on her birthday, which she loved even more. They are now in chrysalide form and she is so excited because she can see them grow and grow every day. This is an awesome toy and have reccomended it to everyone with and with out kids. I also bought a book called "From Caterpillar to Butterfly" and it describes the metaphorsis excellently to her. 2 thumbs up. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Activity    2. Learning    3. Science    4. Bugs    5. Butterflies   


    5. Dora the Explorer: Magic Hair Fairytale Princess Dora Doll
    by Fisher-Price
    Toy (26 July, 2004)
    -- our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0001U1VKC
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Guess what! Dora the Explorer has jumped on the royal bandwagon! This intrepid explorer is now a fairy tale princess with magical hair that grows when the jewel in her crown is pressed with a wand. Dora talks and sings, too, in both English and Spanish: "Vamanos! Let's go to fairytale land! Will you brush my hair?" The 14-inch-tall plastic doll is not designed to be cuddled so much as played with and groomed. She is attired in a satiny yellow gown trimmed in pink and purple, and has a brush, barrettes, and magic wand. The magical tresses emerging from the hair-growing tube are quite realistic, although grownups, at least, might be a little unnerved at the sleek brown hair oozing in and out of Dora's head. Still, children are experts at suspending disbelief and accepting weirdness in the world, so they probably won't mind a bit. Four AA batteries required (included). --Emilie Coulter ... Read more

    Reviews (36)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Not as happy as I thought!!!!
    We bought this for our daughter Brittney (39 months), she wanted it so bad, then after a few days she just stopped playing with it. I don't think she's into the hair brushing and that sort of play just yet. She still loves dora's house, and her other dora dolls which include star catching dora, cowboy dora, buenas noched dora, magic surprise dora and some other ones.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A review for my Sister
    The first day my sister ever saw this item, she wanted it for her birthday, but she got it for Christmas. Thanks to our best friend, Pat, now living at Bethel Retirement Home. When my sister got this, she thought that Dora looked cute in the box. My sister really likes the song that Dora sings. One time, my sister combed Dora's hair too much and too hard. Then it didn't work. My father fixed it on the day he got batteries for my MindMania Spelling Clip. Last, my sister doesn't play with Dora oftenly. Dora uses 4 "AA" batteries (included.)- Cristian and Alejandra Mojica.

    4-0 out of 5 stars 3 yr old likes maybe too much
    Dora is still doing okay considering what she has been through since Christmas.Her pretty hair do was taken out of its rubber bands fairly quickly.She has gotten an unrequested hair cut, luckly not much was cut because I caught my daughter in the act.She gets played with somewhat often even by visiting children.I do sometimes have to take Dora away when the kids start fighting over her.She doesn't look as good as new anymore, but well loved. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Dolls    2. Fairies    3. Princesses    4. Toddler Dolls    5. Ethnic   


    6. Butterfly Pavilion
    by Insect Lore
    Toy
    list price: $39.99 -- our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00004U5UF
    Sales Rank: 279
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (20)

    5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT Butterfly Kit!
    I have been rasing butterflies for 5 years and I LOVE this kit! It's so cool to see them chow down on their nutrient and then change into a chrysalis. I have a suggestion:DO NOT move your caterpillars around a lot, they are delicate and when moved too much, it kills them. Keep them in a quiet, warm place and watch and learn! I have chrysalids right now and they are almost ready to hatch! Tip: mist your chrysalids every other day. This increses the chance that they'll emerge healthy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful--Raise generations of butterflies!
    My son (age 5) got this from his grandparents for Christmas and it has been terrific fun for all of us.The first set of ten caterpillars grew visibly day-by-day, then pupated and emerged as butterflies in a few weeks.There is a lot of great information about painted lady and other butterfly species online and having this project got my son very interested in how a caterpillar turns into a butterfly so soon I found myself showing him multi-colored pictures of imaginal discs (the larval structures that produce the butterfly wing, leg etc. during metamorphosis) online at websites I found--a great way to get him interested in developmental biology.The first time we talked about this he decided they were actually "magical discs", given what these groups of cells can do...the whole process has been very entertaining for the whole family....It is also really fun to have butterflies flitting around and caterpillars growing in the pavilion in the kitchen when it is gray and wintery outside.

    How to raise more than one generation of critters inside:
    Since we sent our coupon for larvae out immediately after Christmas, we had butterflies dancing around the pavilion and mating in February when there were no plants outside to collect for the next generation of caterpillars to eat.Anticipating this, I ordered a mallow plant and some additional larval food from Carolina Biological Supply Company at about the time when our caterpillars turned into chrysalises:there is an online store and the stuff to get is the L918 culture medium (144040).This will feed about 80 larvae.(Unfortunately the Insect Lore company, which makes the Pavilion, only sells caterpillar food in small quantities along with additional larvae, which we certainly didn't need).

    How to do it:We set the mallow plant in the pavilion and the butterflies laid their eggs on the leaves where we could watch them darken and emerge as very tiny 1mm long new caterpillars.After 4-5 days of watching the caterpillars eat the mallow plant (making little tracks on the leaves) we prepared them new homes in caterpillar media.To do this, you can use either the original plastic containers that the first generation larvae are shipped in (clean them out and dish wash them) or use another small clear-sided plastic or glass jar with a lid.Clean the containers well (I wiped the inside with a paper towel with isopropyl alcohol on it after dishwashing to kill bacteria, which will contaminate the food and make the larvae sick).The food will come in two plastic containers (nearly full).One of these can be frozen for subsequent generations.Transfer the contents of one container to a covered microwaveable container and heat on medium in the microwave (swirling every 10-30 seconds to mix and avoid overheating) until it is a solution.Pour media into the bottoms of the larvae containers to a depth of about a quarter inch (this will make 4-5 new containers).If there is a lot of condensation on the sides after the media has hardened, you can wipe this away with a paper towel--I did this, but then again alcohol-wiped the inside solid surfaces and lid above the media.Cover the containers loosely (leave the lid slightly ajar) and put them somewhere to dry.I laid a clean paper towel over the collection of covered jars to keep dust/dirt from drifting in given the activity level of the children here.After a couple days of drying, these were ready for larvae.If necessary (ie., if not using the previously shipped containers) make very, very small air holes in the lid.Then use a toothpick or matchstick to collect each 2-4 mm long larva off of the mallow plant leaves and tap to drop them into the new container.Put a clean paper towel over the top of the container (under the lid) and re-cap the jar--now the paper will serve as a scaffold for new chrysalises to hang from and will allow air in while preventing the tiny caterpillars from escaping.Try to be relatively aseptic about this.

    It appears that we're going to get about 20-30 new caterpillars from the first generation, which I should be able to accommodate with the larvae cups made above...hopefully by the time we've run out of this food and been through a couple more generations it will be summer and warm enough to release all of the butterflies we have outside.The pavilion is well made and sturdy enough that it should accommodate many other projects involving insects.All in all, we've been entirely pleased with this--a great gift that's had my son on the phone describing his butterflies' recent development to grandma and grandpa several times!

    One more tip:the adult butterflies seem to become upended on the floor of the pavillion at times while they are flapping around and have trouble gaining traction to right themselves on the slick nylon surface.This shortened the lives of several of ours until I saw it happening and put some packing material (like easter straw) in there for them to stand on.


    4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful for child and parent
    My two daughters, ages 5 and 8, each received one of these as a Christmas present.We sent away for the caterpillars and they arrived in one week.I have to admit that even I, as an adult, really enjoyed watching the progress of the caterpillars as they transformed into beautiful butterflies.My only compaint is that we weren't prepared when two of the butterflies became entangled in the webbing surrounding the cocoon.There was nothing in the instructions about what to do so we had to watch the butterflies suffer until they finally died from exhaustion.We told the kids that it was simply part of nature.Other than that, what a great experience! ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Learning    2. Science    3. Bugs   


    7. Grow to Pro Basketball
    by Fisher-Price
    Toy
    -- our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005OBCJ
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Just about every child loves to dribble and shoot basketballs, but not every household with children has the right space for a court. This freestanding basketball hoop might be an ideal solution. Since the height of the hoop can be adjusted according to your child's height and skill level (the hoop goes as low as 42 inches and as high as 5 feet), this is a great investment for children as young as 3 years old. The large backboard (22 by 28 inches) helps keep the ball in play. You can make its heavy-plastic stand even more stable by filling the hollow base with sand or water. Wheels on the bottom make it especially portable. --Gail Hudson ... Read more

    Reviews (71)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Not as thrilled as the other reviewers
    Purchased one of these about three years ago.I had to throw it out recently since I couldn't remove the second post to increase the height.In addition, the net had pretty much disintegrated over time even though it was not sujected to heavy use nor much weather.

    It did require a bit of force and a lot of soap to assemble in the beginning. But as hard as we tried recently, we couldn't remove the second post to adjust the height.Fun toy and the kids enjoyed it. Just disappointed that the net didn't last longer and we couldn't enjoy the adjustable height feature.

    4-0 out of 5 stars toy lover
    i almost did not buy this toy because people in other reviews stated how much trouble they had putting it together. well i brought it anyway and i am so glad i did.. it took my son in law fifteen mintues to put it together even with a couple of mistakes. my ganddaughter loves it and i am sure it will grow with her and not be just a one year toy.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Favorite in Our House...
    Our 4 boys LOVE this basketball hoop. We got it two years ago and all of them play with it daily. I can't remember what the assembly was like-apparently it wasn't too horrific because nothing comes to mind. The fun your kids will get out of it is far worth any effort it takes to get it together. Definitely a must have! ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Activity    2. Sports    3. Basketball    4. Sports Equipment   


    8. Animal Planet Jumbo Dino Playset
    by Toys "R" Us
    Toy
    list price: $24.99 -- our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00004YT3U
    Sales Rank: 184
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (20)

    5-0 out of 5 stars a ten-year-olds point of veiw!!!!!!!
    in the reveiws, i saw alot of age ranges, from 2 1/2 to 12!!!!!! This toy is great if you like dinosaurs and my friend is 11 and has this toy too. i like playing with it alot (it is fun for the dinosaurs to attack my Geotrax train set!....witch is also a great toy you can find on amazon) these dinosaurs are great (5 thumbs up to my favorite dinosaur the brachosaurus, who is also the biggest in the set i should add.....) But at first when i was getting this toy i was looking forward to the playmat, but now i dont even play with that or the rocks, volcanos or tree's, dinosaurs are the best part. and i realized that i actually put this toy back! i have a whole lot of toys and most of them are still out this very moment!!!!!!!! and i really like reading there names at the bottom of each dinosaur!!!!!!! Overall, this toy is a big hit (and for you moms out there, my mom tells me that this toy keeps me busy and quiet so she can relax!!!!!) and i totally reccomened it! i hope you enjoyed seeing a childs point of veiw on this toy!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Hours of fun
    I bought this for my three year old son.He loves it.It comes with a plastic play mat and over 10 dinosaurs, plus trees, rocks and two volcanoes. He loves it and it entertains him for hours.But the best part for me is the plastic storage tub.Everything fits easily back in, and it takes up very little space (around the size of a large shoe box).

    5-0 out of 5 stars DINOmite!
    If you have a child who loves dinosaurs then this is the toy for him/her! It's perfect size for (not to small where the pieces will get lost and not too big to store) and it comes with it's own storage container (I wish every toy came with it's own storage container). You child will spend hours of creative play with this great toy! I highly recommend it! And you can't beat the price! My 5 yr. old son set this up in his bedroom and he plays for hours up there. He LOVES it! I think I might buy him another set just to add more to his collection. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Pretend Play    2. Animals    3. Dinosaurs    4. Play Sets   


    9. Easy Score Basketball Set
    by Little Tikes
    Toy
    list price: $49.99 -- our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000J4I6
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Hey, even Michael Jordan was a toddler once. And just think of how many more millions he might have made if he had practiced on a hoop-and-ball set like this one when he was a height-challenged hoopster. With the Easy Score Basketball set those impromptu dunking clinics will be challenging, but no longer impossible. Future MJs can now practice their skills with ease, because the Easy Score adjusts to height, has a size-appropriate hoop, and is made of durable plastic. The over-size rim (1 foot across, with a nylon hoop) can be set anywhere, as it only rises from 2.5 to 4 feet high, putting lay-ups and treys just within reach. A sturdy 15-by-19-inch base keeps the basket from tipping; this is important for young hoopsters who get a little too exuberant. The set comes with a tot-sized (6-inch-wide) rubber b-ball.--Paul Hughes ... Read more

    Reviews (49)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fun while it lasted
    My son got this when he was 3. My 5 year old daughter thought it would be fun to lay it down and sit on it like it was a horse or something. The basket cracked. Before that, the tiny red piece of plastic that is used to adjust the height was lost, so it had to be used at the shortest height. We found the piece, and my husband superglued the basket. It worked until the first slam-dunk. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best purchases we've made
    I couldn't help but add my 2 cents worth. We bought this for our 14 month old son. He absolutely loves it. We have had it for three months and he still plays with it every day. Our 3 year old loves to get into the action too and Dad and the kids literally spend hours playing ball. I would recommend it to anyone. It is a great idea for inside physical activity during the cold months, ours was in the living room, it's nice because it doesn't take up too much space.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The best Christmas present!
    I bought thisbasketball set for my son's Christmas gift this year. My husband loves it as much as my son!When my husband gets home from work they spend at least 30 mins playing ball.It is easy to adjust and the ball is just right for his little hands.We live in an apartment so it stays inside and we don't have sand in it.This is hands down the most used toy in his very very very extensive collection! ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Sports    2. Sports Equipment    3. Basketball    4. Noise-Making    5. Toddler    6. Activity   


    10. Tonka Mighty Front Loader
    by Hasbro
    Toy
    list price: $24.99 -- our price: $21.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000IVZX
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Just like the real front loaders you might see working along the highway, the Mighty Front Loader was designed to dig, dump, and haul. With its large working bucket, deep-cleated tires, and heavy-duty steel construction, this solid truck is guaranteed for life and built for endless hours of fun in the sandbox or yard. Two handles let you control the angle of the work bucket so you can dig or dump sand and dirt, or move rocks around. Or you can set the bucket in a middle position when you want to haul things for a while without holding the handle. The cab and engine sections swivel, making it easy to steer the front loader to where the work is. The large wheels (4.5-inch diameter) have been mounted over strong steel axles, tested for up to 50 pounds. Realistically styled, the front loader measures 22 inches long by 8 inches wide by 9.5 inches high. --Chris Burns ... Read more

    Reviews (21)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Tonka Toys are Tough!
    This is a GREAT toy for a rough little boy which is exactly what we have here! My son received this for Christmas a year ago & it still looks great & works great! That is saying lots!! He can destroy a lot of toys quickly b/c he is all boy!! For example, he received a truck for his birthday a month ago which was supposed to be a good rugged truck well it has been pronounced dead & retired to the trash already after just a month, but not his Tonka toys! But then we always buy the metal ones for him! I dont think you can go wrong with this toy! We are actly buying him a few more in this same line for this Christmas b/c they are so rugged!

    4-0 out of 5 stars The best construction toys
    After much research I'm back to the old steadfast Tonka for my 3 year old.

    These are the best construction toys for kids. I gave it a 4 for the plastic parts. I still have my Tonka loader in perfect condition from 1970, it has a metal loader bucket and mechanism. Although you could argue that the plastic bucket might be more safe if it gets plowed into anything other than dirt or it won't get scraped up from digging and corrode if left out in the elements too often. I like all metal.

    But these are still just great construction toys. The competitors use too much plastic in places where they'll actually break. They feel like they're going to fall apart unless sitting foreven on a shelf.

    Kids will push anything to it's limit, at least smaller kids. So expect any flimsy plastic, realistic looking parts to get broken, unless it's building blocks or something like that.

    There's a difference between hard plastic and softer plastic in terms of durability. Most of the competitor trucks feel like hard plastic. The harder plastic snaps frm fatigue. The bucket on the loader is a bit softer, it's more pliable so it shouldn't snap from moderate abuse

    I'd also stay away from the Tonkas that look more realistic but are all plastic, a harder plastic, and battery operated. Although alittle more realistic looking, those aren't really made for digging or pushing or anything but pretending to dig on a carpet inside only. Perhaps for older kids who play more realistically than forcefully. I've seen some with all of their realistic brittle plastic loader parts just broked off where they attach from over use from preschoolers.

    These look much more durable, and they are. My sons still look pretty darn good and they've seen much use.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Buy it
    These are the BEST toys in the world for kids who love transportation.I got this on special with the free dump truck and they have been all over the house, yard and even went on display for show and tell in grade K.All the kids love it.

    If this is on special with the free dump truck as it is several times then don't hesitate get two and save it for a birthday gift.Both girls and boys love 'em.Great buy. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Vehicles    2. Construction Vehicles    3. Preschool    4. Push and Pull Toys    5. Die-Cast   


    11. My Little Pony: Celebration Castle with Pink Sunsparkle Pony
    by Hasbro
    Toy (27 June, 2003)
    list price: $39.99 -- our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00008X353
    Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    "Sunsparkle" Pony's Celebration Castle requires basic construction, but putting it together with a grownup will be a fun adventure, as Pony lovers see the charming structure taking form. Once finished, "Sunsparkle" (an included and somewhat rare Pony) can happily trot around her master bedroom, vanity room, disco, kitchen, and a bathroom. Each room features furnishings or appliances that have clever innovations, such as a stove that doubles as a kitchen sink. There's also a working elevator, full-length mirror, hot air balloon, two balconies, tableware, Pony clothing, and a brush for "Sunsparkle's" mane. As a gift, a sparkling pink, child-sized crown is included. To top it all off, the castle features charming music and flashing lights on the disco dance floor! Required: 3, 1.5-volt "AA" batteries.Diane Beall ... Read more

    Reviews (277)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Toy
    I read all the previous reviews and I was concerned about things falling off the castle.However, the only thing that comes apart is the attachable heart and sometimes one side of the hot air balloon which is easy to attach by an adult.I have a 2 1/2 year old and she is not destructive and she LOVES this toy.I think you should disregard all the negative reviews and PURCHASE this toy.I have not regretted it in the month we have had it.The Dance Studio is great, too.
    If your child loves My Little Pony then, you HAVE to BUY the CASTLE.

    1-0 out of 5 stars my little pony celebration castle
    This toy is a piece of junk.Keeps falling apart.Would not recommend this toy to anyone.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Cute as heck!Be prepared to glue the pieces on.
    I have to give this castle an A + for how it looks.It is just plain cute!The castle comes with some very fun playing pieces, flower pot, kitchen sink that the ponies can open with their magnetic hooves, and, plates and forks that are fun.Cute design.The poor aspects of this toy are: It is poorly manufactured and I was close to taking it back until I decided to super glue the pieces on.After that, I was much more satisfied with the overall product.We threw out the crown - piece of junk that you couldn't wear anyway and the hot air balloon was tossed because it was "tired" looking but I kept the basket part the balloon went on so the ponies could stand on top of the castle.We have a little bit of difficulty getting the music to play when the pony steps on the platform and the stickers were out of control!I am hesitant to buy my little pony playsets, but we love the quality of the ponies themselves and my daugher who is 4 and I have spent a lot of time braiding the ponies hair and brushing them to look cute!Should have bought more ponies instead of the castle... ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Preschool    2. Animals    3. Horses    4. Dolls    5. Pretend Play   


    12. Barbie as The Princess and The Pauper: Interactive Serafina Plush Cat with 10-minute Audio CD
    by Mattel
    Toy (02 August, 2004)
    list price: $39.99 -- our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0002A5IBY
    Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Serafina, the pampered snowy-white companion of Princess Anneliese, certainly does not lack self-esteem. This chatty kitty burbles over with more than 75 one-liners, including, I am quite the talented kitty, and I love looking pretty. Squeeze her paw, stroke her back, kiss her nose, and Serafina responds with words, songs, purrs, head tosses, tail wags, and, of course, meows. Additionally, when her human friends set up Serafina's jewelry box next to a CD player and insert Serafina's Adventure (included), signals from the CD and jewelry box cause Serafina to do her feline thing! She'll also respond to the Barbie as The Princess and the Pauper and other Serafina DVDs and videos. Measuring a good 22 inches from pink-tipped ears to long fluffy tail, Serafina has blue eyes, a gem-studded crown, and a matching heart-shaped locket, as well as a brush to keep that lush pelt sleek and smooth. Her jewelry box requires one 9-volt battery (not included), and Kitty herself requires three AA batteries (Try Me batteries included, but you'll need fresh ones). --Emilie Coulter ... Read more

    Reviews (42)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Daughter loves it!
    My 5 1/2 year old daughter went on and on and on about wanting this item for Christmas. So, her Grandma and Grandpa bought it for her. She was THRILLED!!! She absolutley LOVES this cat. She pets her, carries her around, and combs her fur. My daughter LOVES watching the "Princess and the Pauper" DVD with Serafina. It does run through quite a few batteries, but even when the batteries have died, my daughter STILL plays/interacts with her. This is one of her favorite toys!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Great toy for $20.00, but I wouldn't pay more
    I bought Serafina for my 6 year old daughter at a Wal-Mart store for $19.88 (the website says $27.88).At $20.00, I can say that it was a good buy.Some stores are charging $30 or $40 and I wouldn't recommend paying that much for it.

    Pros:Moves, talks, and purrs when you interact with it.Works alone or with the included CD and the movie.

    Cons:It sounds a little too mechanical when it moves and the sounds are a little on the loud side.It sheds white fur a little when brushed and it sounds demonic when the batteries are almost dead.

    Overall, I would say that it's worth $20, but I would say they could have made the mechanics run more silently.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Cute toy
    We got this toy for our daughter's 4th birthday. She wanted a real cat and this was our solution to not going to the pet store. She LOVES it. We didn't buy it for educational purpose's, we got it just for the fun. She doesnt let it outta her sight for long. Her 2 year old sister also enjoys trying to steal it away from her. It is a battery monster, and it definately does sound like a demon when the batteries are running low which is kinda creepy. So we just turn it off when we are needing to put new one's in. The jewelry box hasnt yet worked, but peyton our 4 year old doesnt know that, she pets it and play's with it enough that she gets plenty of interactiveness from it. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Princesses   


    13. ESPN Game Station
    by Fisher-Price
    Toy (28 June, 2004)
    -- our price: $199.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00020QJF8
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Parents looking to encourage a love of athletics in their children without breaking the bank buying up an infinite variety of sports gear, may wish to consider this versatile set branded by the folks at ESPN, who know a thing or two about sports. Its a collapsible freestanding kit that offers six sports in all. Basketball is rendered in the model of the classic pop-a-shot game, keeping score as you shoot baskets. In football, youre the quarterback throwing a ball through a small hoop, the same hoop used to test your pitching accuracy in the baseball mode. The action moves to the floor for the other sports as you kick at a small target with a soccer ball, slap a puck at a small target in hockey, and putt into a cup for golf. All necessary gear is included for each sport and an electronic scoring system and the canned voice of ESPN announcer Stuart Scott add to the fun. Some sports in this set work better than others, basketball being a little more fun than hockey, but the sheer versatility of this set make it a good option and means it will be hard for anyone to run out of challenges. --Charlie Williams ... Read more

    Reviews (38)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Addicting but unreliable
    I bought this for my six year old son. I must say, I have spent more time on it than him, playing it into the night after he's put to bed. I've had some reliability problems though--the scoring quit working reliably shortly after we got it--sometimes it records a score, sometimes it doesn't and checking the wiring and replacing batteries hasn't fixed it.Also beware, it's BIG. You need plenty of room and a high celing. Even when "collapsed" into it's storage position, it is a mighty prominent addition to your home. Still, wouldhave given it five stars overall if it worked reliably.

    3-0 out of 5 stars FUN TO PLAY BUT NO FUN TO PUT TOGETHER
    My boys age 12 & 8 wanted this for Christmas so against my wishes I made the purchase. I knew it would be a big job to put together...why do toy makers think parents should make the toy???
    Anyway the instruction book states that it will take 7-14 hours to put together...It took two people 9 hours... I must say it is durable and that is what I was looking for.Make sure you have a room with over 7 foot ceiling because we measured the basement thinking it would fit but had to put it on the unfinshed side of the basement because we did not allow room for the basketball to be thrown higher than 7 feet in order to fall into the net. My kids wanted this toy because the voice is from ESPN and without batteries this toy would be NO FUN to them.The basketball and football are the games they play most.Golf and soccer and hockey are not competitive enough and the scoring is not interactive like the the other games. I know there are other sturdy arcade style basketball games on the market for less money that I could have purchased, but no others that have the ESPN game voice. If you buy this allow ample time to put it together and make sure you have batteries on hand.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Worth it!
    I'll keep this brief.I purchased this for my 2 kids (boy and girl ages 10 and 6) for xmas.They played with it all day xmas and everyday since.They still haven't played with the rest of their toys for playing with this so much.Yes it's a couple of bucks and yes it takes up alot of room...but it's worth it.Better that their on their feet moving than sitting watching tv and playing video games. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Sports    2. Games    3. Tabletop Games   


    14. Barbie as The Princess and The Pauper: Ken as King Dominick and Tutor Julian Doll
    by Mattel
    Toy (29 August, 2004)
    list price: $19.99 -- our price: $8.49
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0002L9HPG
    Sales Rank: 35
    Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (26)

    2-0 out of 5 stars 'The King' has broken his arm...
    This is the 4th male doll we've owned from Mattel to have a broken arm.We've had three seperate Alan dolls from the Happy Family Collection with this problem.I must say that the company was very good in handling this, so I thought it must have been unique to the particular doll.My 8yr old then received King Dominick as a gift.Lo and behold, his arm was broken in no time at all, but unfortunately not before all of the packaging had been disposed of!So, let's see if I can exchange this with no box and no reciept.I'd like to say I'd never buy these again but the girls beg for them!
    I,too, would have liked to see a seperate Julian doll.I have 4 girls close in age who like to play together so someone has to use the 'pretend' character- the Ken masquerading as Julian.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This Ken Doll is U-G-L-Y
    This is one of the ugliest dolls I have ever seen in my entire

    life.His hair looks like a wig, and his face looks like a

    monkey.He makes me sick.I really think this doll should be

    taken off the market, as it is probably going to give some

    small children nightmares.I hope I never have to look into

    the face of this hideous doll again.Thanks.

    2-0 out of 5 stars disappointment
    Disappointed that Tutor Julian is not sold as a separate doll.My granddaughter loves playing with her Barbie/Ken doll (Princess and the Pauper) but wants a Julian doll.Can't find one anywhere. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Princesses   


    15. Design Your Own Soccer Ball Kit
    by Design Your Own
    Toy
    -- our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00002MZ6X
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Design your own soccer ball with this simple kit. The kit includes a size five(regulation-size) all-weather soccer ball, a pump, a set of six paints (in red, blue, green,yellow, black, and white), a specially formulated paint medium to help the paints stick,and a couple of brushes. The process is simple: Pump up the ball and then paint the whitesections in any color scheme. The instructions suggest using team or school colors andpainting on names of friends or team members. Allow each part of the ball to dry for twoto four hours before rotating the ball to paint the next part. Once the entire ball is painted,another 36 hours of drying time is required to ensure that the paint adheres well. Theresult is a fun, personalized soccer ball that's perfect for practice games or familyoutings. --Elisabeth Fredrickson ... Read more

    Features

    • Kit includes synthetic leather ball, paints, brushes, pump, needle, and instruction sheet
    • Hand-sewn soccer ball you paint and design
    • Ball is all-weather and regulation size
    • Paints are non-toxic
    • Air dry paints adhere to ball surface

    Reviews (16)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Surprise
    I bought this for my niece two years ago and never thought about it or heard about it again.Recently, I went to her soccer game and while she was playing, her brothers were playing with this decorated ball.She had fun decorating it and they all love to play with it!!I was pleasantly surprised.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Cool Look, But won't Last
    This seems like a lot of fun, but at the same time most people nowadays are looking for the new cool-looking Adidas or Nike. Plus it probably won't last very long because of the material.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Coming from a kid
    Coming from a kid, I must say that this is a wonderful item to have. I got it for my birthday last year and I loved it. I played with all the time. I painted it my own way, and it tought me to be more creative. It looks still liked new, after a year of playing Traveling Soccer. I had my friends sign my soccer ball and now everyone wants to play with it! I love it and if your kid is sporty and has fun painting and stuff...getting this for your kid is a great idea. I loved getting this and so will you! ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Arts and Crafts    2. Craft Kits    3. Painting    4. Painting Kits    5. Sports    6. Sports Equipment    7. Soccer   


    16. Tot Sports Golf Set
    by Little Tikes
    Toy
    -- our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000J4HY
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Move over, Tiger Woods! Get your tyke into the swing of thingswith the Easy Hit Golf Set. The rolling cart holds two clubs (a putterand a driver) and three oversize golf balls. The set comes with its ownall-surface "hole," allowing for easy play anywhere. All components aremade of durable heavy-duty plastic, ensuring that this set will standup to your little pro's heavy hitting. Some assembly is required.--Alison Golder ... Read more

    Reviews (16)

    4-0 out of 5 stars still a favorite after all these years...
    I just bought this item for my nephew's 2nd birthday.It was a no brainer because I remember how much fun my own 2 boys had with this very same set when they were younger - they're both teenagers now and have graduated to the "real professional sets" although I'm confident their first Little Tykes set was fun & encouraged them enough to make them want to continue enjoying the game!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Top ten toy for toddlers
    We received this toy as a gift when my son was almost two. Now a year later, I'm buying a replacement - we have played with this so much in in our driveway that he's worn a hole in the bottom of one of the clubs!Not that this set isn't durable, but it has seen a lot of action at our house. It's been one of if not the most popular toy with my son for an entire year. It's nice that there are two clubs as well so that other children or mom/dad can join in.We lost the balls that came with it quickly but wiffleballs or practice golf balls work great as replacements.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very good golf toy
    My mom gave this set to our 3 year old daughter last year. She played with it as soon as she saw it and still plays with it every day. The set is composed of a pretend iron, a pretend putter, a golf cart, an inverted cup that serves as the hole and 3 balls.

    Since I, my husband and her older sister play real golf, my now-4 year old has graduated to a real putter and hits with adult golf balls. Whether or not you plan to introduce your child to the sport, it's still a good toy. She still pays with this set inside the house. It's made of plastic so it hasn't damaged the furniture and yet it's sturdy enough not to fall apart. Just make sure you assemble the golf cart correctly or else it can turn into a little surfing board. ;) When it's not golf, the cart has been used to transport various toys from room to room and outdoors.

    Also, even though it's bigger than a regulation hole in a golf course, we've all used the inverted cup to practise our putting. I highly recommend this set for golf, its versatility, sturdiness and fun factor! ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Activity    2. Sports    3. Sports Equipment    4. Golf   


    17. Thomas & Friends Roundhouse
    by Learning Curve
    Toy
    list price: $79.99 -- our price: $79.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000JIC6
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    After longs days of travel and adventure, Thomas the Tank Engine and friends need a place to rest. The Roundhouse is built in exactly the same way as it was when part of the British Railway, solidly constructed in wood and decorated with brick decals. Five trains fit inside the wooden train shelter, and the green plastic doors open and close. It connects to any of the Clickity-Clack Tracks from the Thomas Wooden Railway System with a five-way switch track. There are almost as many pieces to this line of train sets (sold separately) as there are books in the Thomas the Tank Engine series--all contained in carrying cases. All of these toys allow children to engage in imaginative, thoughtful play. --Lynne Sampson ... Read more

    Reviews (13)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Expensive...Yes...and worth every penny!
    I purchased this roundhouse for my 3 year old daughter.She loves anything Thomas!She began her Thomas collection with the figure 8 set and a couple of trains.As I realized how much she loved Thomas, I began to purchase more pieces to add to her collection.Rather than spend a lot of money upfront on a big set, I recommend starting small on a figure 8 set.As your child's interest in Thomas grows or solidifies, add items such as the table, roundhouse, other buildings, etc.I will caution that when you buy items "a la carte", it is very difficult to have everything fit nicely on the table.The roundhouse is her favorite building and all of her friends who come over to play, love it as well.The roundhouse does come with a 5 switch as pictured on the box, the red turntable is a separate item.The turntable is also a great addition to the roundhouse, but not a necessity.The roundhouse will not disappoint for any Thomas enthusiast!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Time For Thomas
    The Thomas train sets are great modern versions of the classic indestructible wooden train sets.Simple enough to avoid the toddler age frustrations of getting the cars to run on the track yet complex enough to engage a wide range of ages (up to and including Grandpas).All the stories help with the imagination part....the books & videos provide an endless source of adventures that can be acted out, although most kids are perfectly capable of inventing their own episodes.

    Here is my advice, if you are trying to work your way through the maze of start-up options:

    First of all, you can spend a fortune on a huge set....even if you can afford it, I would start with something small and give the child the joy of receiving a chain of small but intriguing presents over a long period of time.It fosters the joy of giving/receiving and helps teach them to come back again and again to the same toy...watching it grow, asking for specific items from the stories they hear, etc.Several reviewers suggest painting an old coffee table and this is a great idea.

    I suggest the Figure 8 set (the most popular one) or if you want to spend a little bit more, the Conductors Figure 8 set.Both are complex enough to be interesting, but simple enough to give lots of room for growth.Almost immediately I would add a new present of one of the inexpensive engines (you can ask the child which story they like best and get that engine for them....or buy the engine to go with the video or book in the same gift)....these would be Percy The Small Engine, Bill The Yellow Engine, Treavor, (or a bit more $ for:) The Lady Engine, James The Red Engine, Gordon The Express Engine (he's one of the best stories, I think), or Henry The Green Engine.

    Now for the good stuff!Give it a month or so, and then reward the child with something really cool like the Barrel Loader or Rusty the Construction 3 Car Set.

    I honestly can't see the point in the huge multi hundred dollar system sets.If you want to impress the neighbors or something, go for it, but I'm telling you.....most kids will enjoy a large number of small thoughtful gifts, not a "keep-up-with-the-Jones" effort on your part.

    Good behavior can be rewarded with a pick-your-own trip to the store (there are sometimes when a real time shopping trip can't be beat)

    By the way, the Thomas stories are based on real restored engines that run in England on the Mid-Hants Railway Watercress line near Winchester (you can read about them an even plan a trip to ride on the real Thomas trains by checking outwatercressline.co.uk).They are a day trip from the London rail stations, although I recommend using a B&B in the Winchester area and staying overnight if you decide to go.Winchester was the center of the old Saxon kingdom of Wessex of King Alfred as well as a major early medieval site (the Cathedral has the tombs of many of the Saxon Kings as well as Jayne Austen and Izaac Walton and it was where Richard the Lionhearted was crowned.)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantasic but Pricey!
    When I ordered the roundhouse I believed that the red 5-way switch track was also included, especially when it is pictured on the box, but was disappointed to find that it wasn't. As my 4 year old son believes, as I am sure most do, that this is a very necessary piece of the building he will have to wait until his birthday to receive it (...). A little upsetting.
    Apart from this one thing the Roundhouse is a fantastic piece to have on any Thomas layout, my son loves it and plays with it for hours. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Wooden Train Sets    2. Train Set Accessories    3. Wood    4. Preschool    5. Activity    6. Push and Pull Toys    7. Vehicles    8. Trains    9. Train Accessories   


    18. Tonka Mighty Backhoe
    by Hasbro
    Toy
    -- our price: $24.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000IWAN
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Mighty indeed! This Tonka backhoe is aptly named. Riding high above the ground (11 inches) on large, rugged tires (4.5 inches indiameter), it's constructed of heavy-duty steel and durable plastic. Realistically styled after a full-size backhoe, it has a long steel arm for digging deep or scooping up rocks and dirt. The backhoe can swivel a full 360 degrees on the truck bed, making it easy to load dirt into other trucks or get to those hard-to-reach rock piles. There's a sure-grip handle on the side of the arm for lifting and lowering, and another handle at the base of the arm lets the "driver" extend or retract the work bucket for scooping and dumping. The backhoe sits on strong steel axles that have been tested with a 50-pound load. With a lifetime guarantee to back it up, the Mighty Backhoe is built to withstand all the rough play your kids can dish out. --Chris Burns ... Read more

    Reviews (14)

    5-0 out of 5 stars But .....its not a backhoe.
    It looks like a cool toy, but it really isn't anything like a backhoe you would normally see on a construction site.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Backhoe
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Cat-backhoe-loader07.jpg

    5-0 out of 5 stars Built Strong for Hours of Play
    We purchased the Tonka Mighty Backhoe and the Tonka Mighty Dump Truck for my son for Christmas this year.As a child, I had numerous Tonka trucks, and I can remember how much fun I had playing with them.Although plastic has replaced some of the parts that used to be steel, these trucks are still built strong for hours of fun play, either indoors or outdoors.As for the backhoe, it has a strongly-built cab and handles for the child to hold on to while operating the backhoe.This is an improvement from when I was a child.The backhoe bends in two places, so picking up small objects is very easy.The wheels are made of a sturdy plastic.I highly recommend this fun toy.Combine it with another Tonka vehicle to give your child hours of construction fun.

    5-0 out of 5 stars My 3 year old grandson loves favorite trucks
    I bought the backhoe, dump truck and the back loader and recently purchase the crane for him.He takes them everywhere he goes. His father takes him to see the real ones at work and he know what each one is called.

    They are very durable.Great trucks. ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Vehicles    2. Construction Vehicles    3. Preschool    4. Push and Pull Toys    5. Die-Cast   


    19. Butterflies Kit
    by Balitono, Inc
    Toy
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $15.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00000IS3P
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Re-create Mother Nature's beautiful designs on the wings of butterflies with this kit from Balitono. It includes 4-inch wooden butterflies that can be used as refrigerator magnets, hanging sculptures, window decorations, and toy treasures. The kit offers three butterflies, nontoxic acrylic paints in five colors, shiny varnish, and a paintbrush. Each figure also comes with a press-on magnet, hanging accessories, a suction cup (for window use), and a small gift tag. An easy-to-follow instruction sheet includes compelling facts about the nature of butterflies. Colorful illustrations on the box show a wide variety of butterflies young artists might like to paint. A coded diagram inside identifies each species by name. Children may want to give these items as gifts, use them to decorate their rooms, or simply use them in creative play. --Joan DeClaire ... Read more

    Reviews (21)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Expensive
    I felt this kit was expensive for the small amount of items that came with it. It is cute and beats having my kids sit in front of the television, [...] As a plus I must admit that my children (ages 9 and 7) enjoyed painting the butterflies and turning them into magnets. That is worth a few stars.

    5-0 out of 5 stars classic but fun!
    My girls have received other Balitono kits before and theylove them, so I am always on the lookout for more styles.The best ones we had were the horses kit and some other jewelry box kits (not sure the exact names) but the painted things are on our girls' tables.

    The butterflies kit is not as elaborate as the others we had but we had as much fun creating them.My 9 year old and 7 year old shared the kit and took the time painting them and making into magnets and ornaments.The butterflies are about 4 inches each, not large but there are 3 of them and i am impressed with the quality of the paints and paintbrush since i used to paint on canvas.on the pamphlet, it said the wooden butterflies are hand-carved and they have the details that are life-like.One improvement i would like to have is to have a glow-in-the-dark paint included.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Busy momof four with limited income
    I was pretty disappointed when I open this toy. I have very little money to spend on four wonderful children, and this was to be a Christmas gift, but when I opened it and saw that there were only three littel wooden butterflies, one paint brush and only six primary colors of paint, I really felt like I had wasted my limited resources.

    I wish I had taken the time to read ALL of the reviews before purchasing this product. At a lower price, like 3.99 or less, this would have been a great deal, well worth it. But not at $14.99 plus shipping. I will certainly be much more careful when choosing toys online that is for sure.

    Fortunately for me, my children are very well-manored and very compassionate. It is the reason for holiday that makes them happy. NOT the quality or quantity of the gifts they get. God bless them all... ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Arts and Crafts    2. Painting Kits    3. Animals    4. Bugs    5. Butterflies    6. Painting    7. Learning    8. Activity    9. Craft Kits   


    20. Animal Alley 43" Darby Dog
    by Toys "R" Us
    Toy
    list price: $69.99 -- our price: $49.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005JCO3
    Sales Rank: 2228
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (20)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great item!
    My 17month old daughter absolutely loved her dog!She runs first thing every morning to it and cuddles and holds it.I highly recommend the item...quality great--even though my daughter always wants to pull its hair out.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I WANT IT!!!!!I WANT IT!!!!!
    SO CUTE!HE'S NOT SUPPOSED TO BE EDUCATIONAL, SO SHUT UP!

    5-0 out of 5 stars great B-day present
    For a surprise, my friends all chipped in and got me this darby for my 20th b-day...it was really a shock to see that size of stuffed dog....its very soft, and cuddly..its REALLY big. i love it ... Read more

    Subjects:  1. Stuffed Animals    2. Animals    3. Dogs   


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