(photo courtesy of MelissaandDoug.com)
Since my early speech therapist days, I’ve been big a fan of Melissa & Doug toys. I think they are all around fantastic educational toys for kids. One day, while browsing my local Once Upon A Child, I stumbled upon a Water Wow book. My daughter was around ten months old then, but has had a love for painting since she was about four months, so I couldn’t pass up trying one out. We were about to take our first plane ride in a few days and I thought it would be a perfect distraction for travel!
I didn’t realize the instant love I would have for these books. Fast forward a year later and I’m pretty sure we own all of the books and splash cards they offer. They’re great for car trips and restaurants and they are always a hit with other children on play dates.
They feature a brush that holds water in its body. When you paint on their pages, an image or colors appear. When it dries, they disappear. It’s pretty genius and provides hours of entertainment for my now 22 month old.
I don’t know why more parents don’t know about these gems. Every time I give one as a gift, they’re a huge hit at the party and parents are always asking where I found them! They claim ages 3+, but you’ll find as I post more about my favorite items, I don’t really follow those guidelines. I’d say they’re a great gift for any child!
Today I want to share with you a new staple in our household – Wikki Stix. A few weeks ago, I took my daughter to ride the Sea Glass Carousel in Battery Park. If you’re local to New York City or visiting, I highly recommend the experience. On our way home, we stopped to eat at Blue Smoke. It was really the only restaurant near our ferry that had a reasonably priced lunch menu. Plus, I love BBQ. I was hesitant to go in at first as it looked a bit too fancy for my over-tired toddler. But from the start, the staff went above and beyond ‘kid friendly’. I didn’t order her a kid’s meal (I knew she’d just eat my sides), yet they brought out a raw sugar cookie shaped like a pig and container of sprinkles to decorate it with. How fun is that?
And it got better! Instead of the usual crayons, they gave us a package of Wikki Stix! I had totally forgotten about these gems from my nannying days and I enthusiastically demonstrated their abilities. Fast forward 45 minutes later, my daughter is still engrossed in Wikki play and I’ve eaten an amazing meal in peace! Bonus: upon receiving our check, we also got our decorated cookie back, baked.
Now that Wikki Stix have entered our lives, we can’t live without them! I keep a few in a baggie in my purse for long waits, restaurants, car rides – wherever! Together, we build the planets, numbers, letters, animals, anything and everything out of them. Today I took a trip to a Lakeshore store to buy some teaching tools and I was so excited to find these Wikki Stix number cards (pictured above). My daughter is fascinated by numbers, so I couldn’t resist buying. They can be purchased here.
Please enjoy some of our Wikki Creations, shared below! Oh and in case you were wondering, none of my posts are sponsored. We just like to spread love!