November 28, 2009

Shopping Post: Henry

This year the three younger kids are all getting pajamas as one of their Christmas presents. They need pajamas anyway, but I got them "special" ones (Mario for Edward, kitty for Elizabeth, dinosaur for Henry) so they'll find it thrilling and I also found it fun to buy them fancy jammies. Here are the dinosaur pajamas I got for Henry:


OMG, do you LOVE them? Baby Gap! 50% off! Still $14, even so.

Now I'm turning my attention to toys. Tonight I'm shopping for Henry, age 2-and-a-half. Join me, won't you? *trill of music* *door opens invitingly before you*

(All photos yoinked from Amazon.com, which is where I was doing my shopping.)

Crayola Beginnings Color Me a Song. I don't know if he'd like this or not. He does like to color. He does like music. This thing apparently plays music based on how fast the child scribbles. I'm not sure I want to encourage him to, like, scribble faster per se. But maybe it would be a ton of fun. Or maybe it would be super annoying. I can't tell. About $20.

LeapFrog Tag Junior. We have a regular Tag, and Henry likes it but has a little trouble managing it. This looks much easier to manage, and I love hunting down the books (periodically I find them at 75% off at Target, and they also make good gift idea things). But I am soooooo lazy, and what happens is I buy a new Tag book and then I mean to upload it to the Tag thingie but I keep putting it off until the children are no longer interested in the subject the book is based on. Maybe I would reform if I had a toddler reminding me every few seconds. About $30.

Fisher-Price Kid-Tough Digital Camera. I let the four oldest kids use my actual digital camera: it's not a super-fancy/expensive one, and they're all careful to use the wrist strap, and that way I can upload their photos whenever I upload mine. BUT. Henry. Is not as good at being careful. It is not his fault he's only two. But he sees the other kids using my camera and he really! wants! to use! the camera! Sometimes I let him, but sometimes I've also lost my mind, and sometimes I get fingerprints all over the lens, and sometimes he drops it and now you have to press really hard on the button to make it take a photo. And so sometimes I find this kind of camera more appealing, and my camera was not expensive but this one is less expensive by several multiples. We have the Fisher-Price Kid-Tough portable DVD player (it was "as-is" at Target for $20 and I haven't found a single thing wrong with it) and it has been dropped FROM THE TOP BUNK and is still working fine, so I'd be ready to put down money for the camera if I knew he'd use it and not still pine to use mine. About $45.

Oh! The Melissa and Doug Slice and Bake Cookie Set! My mom has this at her house, and all three littles LOVVVVVE it. They cut cookie dough slices, bake them on a cookie sheet, then put frosting on them. I totally recommend this for the age 2-5 range, and longer if you have a child who particularly likes to pretend-bake. About $14.

Green Toys Tea Set. Speaking of my mom's house, she also has a tea set Henry loves to play with. She lets him use real water in it. He is not very tidy. I'm not getting him a tea set. $17ish.

LeapFrog Fridge Phonics. We already have this, but if you're looking for something for a toddler/preschooler this would be GREAT. The unit and the letters go on the fridge, and if you put a letter into the unit it sings a little song about the letter. I SWEAR this (plus the tied-in DVD) is what taught the twins their letters and letter sounds, and the song manages not to annoy me (the frogs in the video are another story). About $15 (and about $10 for the video; they'd make a nice set).

Fisher Price Smart Fit. This looks kind of like the Wii Fit? But for little kids? Henry's still too young for it but the twins might like it and Henry could grow into it. About $40.

Fisher-Price Spike Jr. Henry loves this whenever I let him play with it while we're shopping at Target, but I'm not sure it has enough play value for the price. It makes a yawning kind of roar (not overly scary), then stomps around, then chuckles like "Ha ha, I would totally not eat you in one quick snap if I were real." About $40.

Mr. Potato Head Silly Suitcase. He has this already and loves it. About $17.

Alex Tub Tunes Water Flutes. I think he'd like these: he likes music, he likes baths. And I think the older kids would like it, too. About $12.

This, by the way, is the amusing present he's getting from my parents: the Fisher-Price Little Mommy Gotta Go doll. He flipped out over it in the store and so my mom bought it---which is, I assume, why store managers don't much mind if kids play with the toys in the store. This doll has SIXTY different things she says, many of them related to peeing and using the potty ( <--- TODDLER PROPAGANDA ALERT). And may I inquire why this toy is available in three different girl versions but not even one boy version? About $50.

33 comments:

Hotch Potchery said...

I already put the water flutes in my shopping cart for my 3 year old nephew! Thanks for a great idea...

Stephanie said...

FYI Swistle...the Melissa and Doug cookie set is being recalled in Canada. The same factory makes the U.S. ones as well...

http://www.non-toxickids.net/2009/11/another-melissa-and-doug-recall-in.html

Misguided Mommy said...

what the shit gives man.

so thursday night i start filling up my online shopping cart for stuff i might miss out on when i go shopping friday. i get to gap and the pajamas are not on sale. the lady was like, huh weird they were and now they are not (fishy since there was no sign, in fact ALMOST NONE OF THE ACTUAL STORE WAS ON SALE, ) the fleece wasn't the pants nothing. i was pissed off. now to see they were still onsale online i feel like i got robbed i want to go fuck that store up

Christina said...

LOVE the water flute idea! Maybe for my just-turned-3-years-old God daughter?!! Thanks Swistle!

Katy said...

Swistle--I'm sending you some extremely good vibes right now. As you may remember, my Charlie has CP and we are trying to encourage him to hold and use a crayon. He's good for about 30 seconds. I am SO EXCITED about that musical writing thing. That's totally going on his Christmas list.

Leslie said...

My mom would always get my sister and me pajamas for Christmas, then when we begged and begged to open something on Christmas Eve, that would be the package she'd give us ... thus assuring the morning pictures would find us in cute, matching, relatively clean pjs.

Anne said...

My MIL got the crayola scribble music thing for our 2 and a half year old- I'm hoping it has a quiet function and does not drive us crazy, but it looks super cool.

Sad to hear about the M&D cookie cutter set recall, as this is something we just ordered for our toddler.

We have the water whistles- they were a gift when our now 7 year old was maybe 3 or 4. Fun for bathtime and they last a long time!

Sarah said...

I'm pretty sure the reason why there aren't any boy potty training dolls are the fact that the toy makers wouldn't want to make anatomically correct dolls, and also, how would you teach a doll to pee standing up..?

Kim said...

I was thinking about you as I wrote my latest post about Black Friday, because I'm curious. Have you ever participated in the madness - venturing out to spend hours waiting in line for a particular toy? I'm curious because you're both the Present & Shopping Guru and you don't strike me as someone who'd fall prey to retail hysteria unless you absolutely had to.

desperate housewife said...

1. My mom always got us girls special Christmas jammies, and now she gets them for my kids. It's a good tradition. I still kinda want Christmas pj's for me!
2. I am SO getting that slice and bake cookie thing! Both my kids are really really into play cooking right now and they especially love making ice cream, cupcakes, cookies, etc. They would lose their minds over that.
3. Addy got that potty doll as a birthday present last year. It was a big hit for about a week or so, and she does still play with it occasionally, but I found that as far as helping her ease into using the potty, it did NOTHING. She's an especially stubborn breed, though. My MIL swears a potty doll was how she potty trained her youngest in about three days, so obviously it works for some people.
Or, some people are lying.

Siera said...

It's nice to see your not just sticking to boy toys or gender neutral toys. I'm so glad you'll let him have doll and not balk at it. Does Paul care if your boys play with girl toys? I wanted to get my guy a little stroller and kitchen set as he always goes for these items play group but my partner freaked out at the thought of his boy playing with girl toys.

g~ said...

Alright. I am actually looking for a "real" picnic basket set with food or room for food for my 4 yr old daughter. We recently pitched all of her plastic crap food (bad parents) and want her to have just a few food items and a cute place to put them. Internet search has come up bare but SURELY someone sells a nice picnic set for girls? SURELY??
Anyone know of something? Melissa and Doug have let me down here.
Help much appreciated.

Swistle said...

Kim- NOooooooo no no no. The thought of people SURGING into stores and RACING for sale items makes me feel like barfing into the shrubbery. I stay way away from Black Friday.

Anne- There's no U.S. recall on the cookie set. The Canadian recall is for barium. Here's a link to the actual recall rather than to a blog post about it---I generally don't think it's safe to trust blog posts for facts. That link also gives the UPC of the recalled sets.

Swistle said...

Siera- Oh! I don't know! I hadn't thought about it! I do think Paul and I would both prefer it were a boy doll, but more out of righteous indignation than out of any concerns about dolls. I think the doll could be non-anatomically correct (it's not anatomically correct for the girl, either), and at least in our house we teach the boys to pee sitting down, so...well, maybe I'll cut her hair and make her a boy! We have a stroller and kitchen set, too, for all the kids---I hadn't thought of them as girl stuff, but maybe that's because Paul cooks more than I do, and either of us might push a stroller.

Swistle's mom said...

I immediately thought about cutting the doll's hair to make her into a boy -- and I could even make boy clothes for her -- but several of the 60 things she says are things like "I am such a BIG GIRL!" which would be pretty confusing coming from a boy doll! (By the way, I know all 60 things she says, because as soon as I got it home I took out all the twisty-ties --ostensibly to make it easier for Henry on Christmas Eve, but also -- so I could PLAY with her! She's cool! After she pees she asks to brush her teeth, and when you touch the brush to her teeth you hear brushing and spitting sounds! She also asks for a drink, and when you put the cup to her lips she makes gulping sounds and then swallows. And she says thank you! Among many other things. Wild!

6512 and growing said...

Can we come over to your house, on like, December 26th? Or maybe just your mom's house?

Slice and bake cookies looks like a winner!

Fran said...

We bought the Fisher Price for our boys a couple years ago. It is just okay. The picture quality is very poor but if all he wants to do is take a picture now and then it will be great for him. It's a battery eater though!

Existential Waitress said...

The water tubes and digital cameras rock - my kids have them both and love them.

1hottiredmama said...

We have 2 of the Fisher Price cameras and 2 Vtech cameras (we have 4 kids) and the Vtech is, hands down, the better camera. It takes better pictures, it has some educational games on it that a toddler can manage and it has extra decorative covers on it (we have the pink one). We bought the Vtech cameras at Target. :o) They are about the same price as the Fisher Price.

Joanne said...

Ooh those Gap pajamas are expensive right? I bought my son some railroad train pj's for Halloween so he could be Alexander and they were pricey. But they're also super nice and cute! Damn them! :)

Jess said...

This is awesome and I don't even have kids yet. I have been eyeing that cookie slice set as a possible gift for my sister's younger stepdaughter (age nearly-3). This may put me over the edge. Though we already have enough gifts for her. Those girls are really just my excuse to buy kid stuff until I have a kid of my own.

katethegr8 said...

THANK YOU SO MCUH FOR THIS POST! my son is almost 2 and i like to buy gifts that extend through the next year so we last till next christmas! Being that he is my first I wasnt really sure what direction to go in..this helped ALOT!

Alias Mother said...

I just bought the Fisher Price camera for my daughter's second birthday a week-and-a-half ago so I can report out. Verdict is...meh. So far, anyway. The viewfinder is confusing and the LCD screen is teensy, so I think it's hard for her to see what she's taking a picture of. Also, the button to take the picture is on the front of the camera, not in the usual spot on the top where she could see it. So she always turns the camera around to look at the button as she pushes it, meaning that we have 2700 shots of her forehead. But, I freely admit that she's younger than Henry and massively uncoordinated (my genes), so this may not be an issue for you.

It does seem plenty tough. We just took a bunch of pictures of ourselves and the pets so she can scroll through and look at them. She gets the satisfaction of button-pushing and it seems to make her happy. Maybe later she'll care more about actual picture-taking and will get it together.

Thanks for the Mr. Potato Head reminder. I forgot that thing existed and it's totally right up her alley.

missris said...

Never fails, kids LOVE Mr. Potato Head.

Lora said...

so... when can my kid come over and play with all those toys because he would love every single one of them. Especially the tea set and cookies. He's a little- um- delicate like that.

Love to you lady!

el-e-e said...

This post was so helpful! I'm having a hard time thinking of things for my nearly 2-y-o daughter, and not enough time to browse around. Enter the Melissa and Doug cookies! Thank YOOOO!

Shelly said...

A lot of those look really cool. The potty doll seems really random, but I do have a three year old boy who really is not interested in pottying at all, so maybe I should invest in one, yeah? I do wish there was a boy version.

Alice said...

i wonder if those dino pjs come in xxxxxxxx-large? would like a pair for myself :-)

Erin said...

I'm letting the grandparents drop the major buckos for our boy this Christmas. But I did get him a Handy Manny tool box after I discovered how much he loves helping his Daddy with his real tools.

lisa said...

In the event you haven't purchased yet-- DONT BUY THE CAMERA. Its junk. I've been in contact with FP customer service. We got that exact camera as a Christmas gift last year and it shorts out. Evidently something about static electricity and walking around with it (which kids do). FP's solution? Take the batteries out and put them back in to "reset" it. Save your money- this is not worth it.

Jewels said...

I have a little nephew who love love LOVES matchbox cars. He already has a million of them but when I tried to ask him what he wants for Christmas he said "I love cars." Sooooo I guess he'll be getting cars.

therextras said...

FUN toys! Would you adopt me? I have been a very good girl this year! ;)

If you run out of ideas, see the link to a daily toy review on my blog, top box, middle column.

Barbara

Jessica said...

I think I want that color-song thing...my husband is going to think I've completely lost it, but whatever.