Kitty Egg Crayons by by Kitty Baby Love
Both these sets of chunky crayons are adorable! Grab a set and hide them away for the next afternoon the kids are restless and bored.
Heart crayons by MonsterBug Blankets
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Does your baby love balloons? Are they just spellbound by how they magically float over head. Unlike a ball, a balloon moves slowly, gently, perfect for little hands & eyes that want to bat that thing back up in the air. But there is a problem with balloons and babies. They are a choking hazard. They can pop and eject the latex into the mouth, blocking the airway.
I’m always anxious when babies & toddlers are around balloons. Of course my kids have all adored balloons to distraction. Even though I sometimes wonder if my own risk of heart attack from the stress of watching babies bite balloons is worse than the actual choking risk, I still cannot get over the fear and worry every time I see an infant bite a balloon. Makes my blood run cold!
Fortunately, there is a simple elegant solution for us all, from SDK Designs that brings balloons back into play. Fabric balloon slipcovers! These are so clever I do wish I’d thought of it myself. The balloon goes in, you blow it up, you slip the knotted end inside and you have an attractive, covered, and safe balloon for baby to bat at. Genius. It’s a neurotic mommy’s best friend and a great gift as well!
Once, when my girls were littler, a well meaning relative bought them a box of those really inexpensive molded plastic playfood items that sort of, kind of, resemble food shapes but leave you wondering if they are beets or potatoes. My girls tried to muster up a little enthusiam for the strange little plastic beetatos but barely a week passed before someone decided to use the plastic play food in the tub (soup?). Shortly thereafter, beetatos went bye bye. Since then I’ve been super picky about playfood. I don’t need any more rejected toys gathering mold in the bath. I’ve got a no plastic play food rule. It’s all wood, crocheted or felt. For felt food I have a new obsession. The play food from One & Only is not just play food. It’s art!
Ryan Ringel’s boys are hard on their toys. Any parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle or big brother or sister can probably relate. Ryan’s oldest son especially loves a good puzzle. But when ordinary, store-bought puzzles were subjected to his enthusiasm…over time, the results were not pretty.
Of course, store-bought puzzles are merely cardboard or chipboard with a sticker slapped on, or paper glued to the front…hardly designed to stand the test of time. Ryan’s boys were going through puzzles like tissues during flu season.
One day, Ryan was inspired to make more durable puzzles while watching a sculptor use a scroll saw to create intricate patterns in wood. He figured the same technique could be used to make puzzles for his kids, puzzles that were more interesting than the standard square or rectangle, as well as tougher than the flimsy ones from the mall toy store.
The first puzzle (“Faye Fish”) was a huge hit with the boys, and could keep them entertained for hours, without breaking apart, peeling, or bending. Soon, Ryan was making puzzles for the kids of his friends and neighbors, as well as his sons’ classmates, and My Daddy Puzzles was born.
Every puzzle is drawn by Ryan, and cut, sanded, stained, and painted by hand in his Alexandria, Virginia workshop. Each design is available in a variety of paint colors, in natural stain, or unpainted.
The poplar or maple hardwoods used to make them are grown and harvested in the USA, and the paints and stains used to decorate them come from a company in Ohio.
The puzzles are simple, yet challenging enough to keep kids as young as 18 months entertained and mentally stimulated. They’re painted on both sides to add a layer of difficulty, and range in size from 5 pieces for the littlest ones, to 10 pieces for older children.
The Pretty Dreamer workshop offers a lively array of imaginatively handcrafted, useful, colorful, simple wooden toys and goods for home and play. All items are designed and created in the my shop from locally harvested wood. All materials are carefully chosen and non-toxic.