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Baba Reviews

Bellz Magnetic Game Review

Bellz Magnetic Game from SpinMaster

Well……Chicken Pox times two has just left the Mamma Fairy house and I am not sorry to see it go. Only my kids would get Chicken Pox on the hottest days of the year so far.  As you might have seen from previous  posts my pair love being out doors so trying to keep them occupied and engaged indoors is borderline mission impossible.

Bellz Magnetic Game

Bellz Game

We were sent the magnetic balls known as “Bellz” for review earlier in the month so this was duly dispatched to aid the relentless cries of im bored.

 What is Bellz?

Bellz game consists of a magnetic wand and a batch (40) of colourful magnetic bells of different colours and sizes. The object of the game is to collect only your own colour of bells with the wand.  If you pick up another colour it’s somebody else’s turn.  The magnetic wand has one very powerful magnetic and another weaker side to aid picking up the bells. Even though its sounds really simple it isn’t! It takes skill and patience to use the wand to the correct degree to pick up only your own colour.

Bellz Magnetic Game

Bellz Game Storage Pouch

The game comes in a handy pouch which makes packing it up really handy. When the pouch opens up it doubles as the paying board – very handy! (see pic opposite)

 

What we thought?

Did it aid the “im bored” cries? Yes it did for a while anyway!! What we liked w was how portable it is and its definitely appealing for all ages too.  We were able to take it travelling with us big plus in my book as lots of board games aren’t so portable. The downsides for me were that id love if there were two wands supplied as my pair ended up making their own version of the game up and two wands would have saved the odd argument. More of a nice to have. This award winning game from Spinmaster is priced around €15 and would an ideal one for summer holiday.

In summary the Mamma Fairy house gives this one a thumbs up. I have even caught the Dada Fairy giving it a go!!!

Note: We were sent the Bellz Magnetic Game for review however as always all view are my own or the boys where appropriate.
Baba Reviews

Spinmaster Air Hogs E Charger Review

Spin Master

Pic Credit: Spin Master

The boys love being outdoors so we are always up for trying out toys we can use in the garden or the park.  The Air Hogs E-Charger from Spin Master fits the bill perfectly.  Rumour has it Air Hogs will be big this year on Christmas lists!!!

Air Hogs E-Charger

Air hogs E-Charger

The kit comes with the E-Charger or plane, the charger and an instruction manaul.   The product requires 3 AAA batteries which are not included.  It is so simple to use. You literally plug the E-Charger into the charger device for 30 seconds! Yep only 30 seconds and you are ready to go.  This in itself is ideal for kids especially mine who are not the most patient!

The e-charger itself can travel up to 100 yards which definitley impressed the boys. Its so light they werent overly hopeful at the outset but after a few attempts they managed to figure out how to gain good distance with it. The competitive nature wasnt long coming out in them and they try to see who can make it go the furthest distance.

One note of cation is to open it from the box with care. The boys were a little over zealous trying to get it out of the box and damaged the wing a little. It didnt seem to impact the flying thankfully.

The Verdict

Air Hogs E-Charger

Air Hogs E-Charger

Thumbs up from the biggest boy, especially the fact it only took 30 seconds to be able to make it fly. Its also very portable when out and about as im normally the one left carrying the toys after they are tired in the park!

Priced around €13 this is very reasonable for the amount of play it has got in this house to date.

 

Note: We were sent the E-Charger to review however as always opinions are my own or the boys where appropriate.

Baba Reviews

Stikbot Zanimation Studio Review

My kids had Stikbots before this fab product landed through our letterbox to review.  I hadn’t heard of these guys before but my oldest did and was really happy to add to his collection.

What are they?!

Stikbots are little posable figures, approx 3 inches high with suction cups on their hands and feet to enable them to stay in position.  How they work is that you download an app which enables you then to make stop start top animations with your phone or tablet.

The “Zanimation” studio contains all the elements needed to get started straight away.  It comes with 2 Stikbots, a green back drop (and 2 prop boxes) and a handy tripod to prop up your phone.  The app itself is available for free download (both iOS and Android) and very easy to use and follow. You will find plenty You Tube videos to assist if you are experiencing difficulty with it, or just ask the kids! Mine are far more tech savvy than me!

What we thought?

Kids were already fans of Stikbots so this was always going to be a hit.  It’s the kind of toy I would have enjoyed myself as a child and a lovely introduction for young kids to the world of animation and how it works.  Picture opposite of an epic battle about to start. (disclaimer the pink and green we already owned they did not come with it).

Be warned though the animation can be slow progress to make anything any length of time so younger kids may not have the patience for it as each teeny move adds up to make the animation video.

This is priced around €20 and in my mind very good value  for hours of fun and a nice way to incorporate some old fashioned play with technology.  Toys that engage the brain are a hit in my book and Stikbots do tick that box.  The boys actually spend more time making up scenes and battles (!!) than actually doing the animation itself. Individually they are priced around €5 so its not too expensive to add to your collection.  I can see this getting lots of play in our house and the requests have already started for more figures!!

 

Note: We were sent the Zanimation studio but we were already fans. The fact we were sent this doens’t impact our view as quick frankly the kids don’t care how it arrived to the house!!!

 

Baba Reviews

Paw Patrol Jumbling Tower Game Review

You probably have seen from previous posts how much we love board games in the Mamma Fairy house.  A couple of weeks back we were sent the Paw Patrol Jumbling Towers game to review.  Knowing how much the boys love their board games I decided to keep it hidden for that rainy day which was happened to be a family event. I wanted something to keep both boys (ages almost 5 and 2) amused and I had a feeling this would and it did.

Its a simple concept similar to the old school Jenga game where you stack the blocks, roll the dice and pull out the relvant block. The block are coloured with little paw patrol motifs on them.  The power of TV/ adveritsing my two year old was able to tell me which symbol was which member of the paw patrol!

While the game is advertised for ages 4 up (i suspect due to the small dice) my2 year old had so much fun with this.  They actually had more fun competing to build towers and knock each others down.

There really are lots of pieces to this set and endless possibilties of what to do with it, we had towers, bridges, castles. You cant beat the old school toys, toys that let kids let their imaginations run wild. I can happily report this game is has become a play date favourite.

The Verdict

Its very reasoanably prices at around €10,  and a big thumbs up from the Mamma Fairy house.  My only criticim would be storing it after you take it out of the box that it doesnt easily fit back in! Not a big issue really and im just ott about tidying every evening!

 

Note: We were sent this game to review however this in no way influences mine or the boys in the case opinion.
Baba Reviews

YippieYo Cross buggy review

We spend so much of our time as a family being outdoors. By splitting our time between Dublin and Donegal means the incredible Wild Atlantic Way is quite literally on our doorstop. We grab every chance to spend time exploring it. The boys are kind of at that awkard age where they want to want walk but  still get tired (lazy) after a while.

I received an email a number of months back wondering if we would be interested in giving the YippieYo a go.  I had just given our Phil & Teds to my sister in law so it was perfect timing!

There was great excitment when the postman delivered a massive box to the front door.  Following a very easy assembly we were good to go.  My husband (and rightly so) is a total safety obssesive.  The YippieYo got a thorough going over and once it passed his inpection out we went.

The YippieYo isnt a stroller or double buggy like id ever come across before. It fits two children side by side with 5 point safety harness that my little houdini can’t even escpae from! I understand the YippieY0 complies with all safety and quality standards in accordance with the European Standard for Pushchairs and Prams (EN 1888) and is GS certified in Germany. Pretty impressive if you ask me.

So what did the Mamma Fairy house think:

Pros

  • See above – how safe it is, safety when it comes to my kids safety is paramount so this for me is a key consideration
  • It is so easy to use and pull along.  Both my husband and I are in total agreement about this.
  • The brake – we tested it (minus kids) on the steep hill outside our house and it didnt budge!
  • It comes in a range of colour options and accessories, speaking of accessories you can get clip on LED lights which I think ever buggy should have.
  • No issues with the rough terrain in Donegal! And zero complaints from the kids when out about about in it.

Cons

 

  • This is Ireland! Id love some kind of clip on rain hood.  Not a deal breaker but a definite nice to have for me
  • It is big for transporting, not an issue for us but might be it you had a smaller car

 

Mamma Fairy Verdict:

Overall the YippieYo gets a big thumbs up from the Mamma Fairy house, it delivers exactly what it promises, its safe, its comfortable and suitable for all terrains. We received this before Christmas and it gets very regular use in this house.

 

Note: We were sent the YippieYo for review however the views expressed by myself and the boys are in no way influenced by this.

 

Baba Reviews

Interplay UK – Bug Safari Review

I am (irrationally!!) terrified of all sorts of creepy crawlies, therefore the Dada Fairy was dispatched to try out Inter Play UK Bug Safari with the kids.

The set itself contains:

  • Field lens (magnifying lens)
  • Bug tongs
  • Magnifying Pot
  • Tweezers
  • Paint brush (kids assumed this was to paint pictures of their findings – apparently not its for sweeping the bugs in the pot rather than touching them!)
  • Handy little guide about the tools and bugs that you might find on your hunt.

The kids took their Bug Safari kit off to the local park to for their bug hunt! I sent them off with the warning that they weren’t to take any bugs home!! I had a quiet couple of hours while the boys hunted! I can happily report that I didn’t see any of the finding of the bug hunt as all were returned to their environment following investigation by my little explorers.

The Verdict

The boys would spend every waking minute outdoors so I had a feeling this would be a hit and it was.  They loved the magnifying pot which stored their loot for closer inspection. The bug tongs was apparently very handy for getting them into the pot!  I think this is a great product, contains all the tools you would need including the useful little book that comes with it.  Particular thumbs up from the Mamma Fairy house for the magnifying pot.

I can foresee this getting lots of play in our house especially over the Summer months. However do return the creepies back to their homes after inspection!

Note: We were sent the Bug Safari to review however this in no way influenced mine (or the kids in this case) review of the product.
Baba Reviews

2 months on where are the Christmas toys?!

  1. Now that the dust has quite literally settled on the  Christmas toys,  two months on im always curious has the must requested item been cast aside or is it as much loved and wanted as it was when it featured on the infamous list. First up are those that are still very much played with.

1 – Irish Fairy Door Worry Plaque

Once the oldest saw this on the Late Late Toy show it was a done deal, Santa HAD to bring him one. Santa being the great man that he is duly obliged. Oldest is a real worrier about everything. The worry plaque for anybody who doesnt know is a genuis idea by the Irish Fairy Door Company. You put your hand on the plaque and it turns from red to green meaning your worry has gone.  Simple but very effective.  Our resident fairy JoJo (cuddly teddy by the Irish Fairy Door Company) brought the worry plaque and he sits a the end of the oldests bed to look out for him.  The magic and wonder is so beautiful. I am a firm believer in letting kids be kids and the magic that the Irish Fairy Door products brings is just magical.  Our worry plaque is ably guarded by Batman and Robin!!! The worry plaque is available from Irish Fairy Door Company and in my opinion well worth it.

 

2 – Melissa and Doug Horse trailer

This was a last minute addition as I dashed around TK Maxx on Christmas eve. The youngest absolutley loves this toy.  The trailer carts Peppa, Ryder and all sorts of wierd and wonderful characters around.  It cost €9.00 and it was so worth it.  I have seen it in a couple of places since albeit slighlty more expensive. Melissa and Doug toys in my experience are really well made and last the test of time.

3 – Furry Friends Watch

Despite the fact that he can’t tell the time he insists on wearing his watch everytime he leaves the house! We were sent these before Christmas and I kept one as a stocking filler which turned out to be a great idea! Big hit here, they are well made and an ideal size for my 4 year old. They come in a range of colours and a reasonable price tag of £12. Available here

So what didn’t  make the 2 month test!

Soggy Doggy

The main item on the Christmas list was the board game Soggy Doggy.  It was played with for approximately 10 mintues and that was it nothing….. it barely made out of the box after that.  There is nothing wrong with the game I think he just expected more from it.  Board games can be a bit hit and miss anyway unfortunately this one was a miss for us.

Baba Reviews

The kids current Netflix picks

We have finally escaped from a never ending cycle of Peppa Pig and Team Umizoomi! The boys have found some new Netflix favourites! Finally!!!

Tayo

Tayo is a popular pre school cartoon which follows a playful blue bus on its adventures around the city with his pals. I believe it originated in South Korea and has now become popular all over the world. We used to watch it on You Tube however it must be a recent addition to Netflix and a popular one at that in this house anyway!

Lego

The boys love their Lego and have recently become interested in the Lego programmes on Netflix. They are ideal for kids in that they are short and colourful and hold the boys attention. Favourites are the Lego Superheroes and Lego City.

Monster v Aliens

The four year old has taken a shine to this one! Its a Dreamworks offerings about a woman who is struck by a meteorite on her wedding day and subsequenlty becomes part of a team of monsters sent to defeat an alien mastermind trying to take over the planet.  He has been on the hunt for meteorites since!!! It contains the names of lots of big named voices. I hadnt heard of it the film before this but its actully not bad at all.

 

Note: We are part of Netflix Streamteam, for which we receive a montly subscrption to Netflix. However all views are the boys (or mine) as lets face it they dont really care who pays the montly subscription!!
Baba Reviews, Mamma Reviews

Santa Experience at Dunnes Ilac Centre

santaexperienceWe were invited along to the preview of the Santa Experience located upstairs in Dunnes Ilac Centre.  I mentioned to my oldest who just turned four, there wasn’t a moments hesitation and we were off!  He requested could we go on an adventure and go by bus which I reluctantly duly obliged. Two young kids on public transport!! The stress.

Location wise being in the Ilac makes this Santa experience really central and easy to access with lots of parking and bus stops near by.

When we arrived we were greeted by a lovely team of elves who entertained my little men while we waited for the call to see the big man himself.  We weren’t waiting long at all and we were whisked away to Santas Post office.  santa2

This is where the magic begins, my oldest was in awe of the cheery elf who explained where Santa got letters from and how the post get sorted. She plays a great character and draws the kids in quickly, we then went through a cupboard after doing the secret elf knock to see the reindeers. Once we got acquainted with Santa’s key team we went into the Sleigh Room.

This is not to be missed – special mention to the two elves here who had the adults in stitches too. The boys got to sit in Santa sleigh where they travelled across to the next room – it was Santas room!!

I cannot succinctly put into words the sheer delight in the oldest eyes when Santa mentioned his name, his teachers name and knew he wanted Soggy Doggy (!!) for Christmas.  We were in at the same time as another family who had 2 young girls, Santa knew they went to an Irish school and asked them a question in Irish – cue absolute excitement from them.  Santa himself true to form is really good with kids, calm and patient ideal for my little gang who are only 4 and 1.

santaEach of the boys got an age appropriate gift and we got a photo with Santa taken by the professional photographer who was there.

Cost wise this Santa Experience is a very reasonable €10 for kids and €3 for adults. It opened yesterday the 25th and is also in Limerick and Cork. Bookings can be made online Here.

Overall its a big thumbs up from the Mamma Fairy house, biggest plus being value for money, location and the absolute awe in my fours years olds eyes when Santa knew so  much about him.

Note: We were invited to attend a preview of this event, we were not asked nor required to write a review, all opinion are my own and the boys honest views

 

 

Baba Reviews

Message in a Bottle personalised childrens book

Its no secret we love reading in the Mamma Fairy house, therefore when we were offered the opportunity to be part of the launch team for the personalised children’s book Message in a Bottle, I didn’t hesitate to get involved.

miab

The Story

The basic premise of the book tracks the adventures of Kiki who travels the world to deliver a very special message.  The lovely thing about the book is that your childs name  and home location is mentioned throughout the book, concluding in Kiki delivering a special truly personalised message. This can to mark an occasion such as starting school, the arrival of a sibling or moving house – a lovely keepsake too.

For me, without question the level of detail in the illustrations is a must see, they are bright, colourful and engaging. Both of boys were so intrigued by them. The content itself is both educational and engaging.  It holds the attention of my pair which is no mean feat!

How to order

The ordering process is very simple and easy to follow via the website.  Delivery is free within the EU and the leadtime was very short for us.

This is definitely one to add to the Christmas book list.

 

Note: we have been part of the launch team and receieved a copy of the book for the purpose of the review.  However the views are my own and the boys where appropriate.