Tag Archives: toys

Stuff Your Stockings and Save!

How much stuff can you stuff in your stocking before your stocking’s stuffed enough stuff? That’s the question next week for the return of Kazoodles’ annual Stocking Stuffer Sale. Bring your stocking into the store (or borrow one of ours) from Sunday, December 15 to Thursday, December 20 and see how much you can fit inside. Bring it up to the register and you’ll get a whopping 20 percent off everything that fits!

And when we say stocking, we mean your everyday, average-sized stocking. Whether or not Santa actually fills your five-foot sleeping bag with gifts is between him and you. Kazoodles doesn’t play that way.

We have plenty of stocking stuffers to satisfy the whole family, and in case you needed some ideas, here are a few stuffed stockings for inspiration!

Stocking_Babies

Stocking Stuff for Babies
Baby toys and stocking stuffers don’t always go hand-in-hand, what with the choking problem most small, stuffable toys come with. Thankfully there are plenty of great toys out there that are small, safe and most of all fun!

  • Betty Bot: $5.99
    Made of hard, durable plastic, Betty Bot clicks when you move her, just like a real robot! (Right?)
  • First Friends: $8.99
    Close cousins to Betty Bot, First Friends are durable AND adorable.
  • Little Chubbies: $1.99
    These chubby little vehicles are super light-weight and lots of fun for little ones. They can even go in the dish washer!
  • Knit Squeak Easy Animals: $6.99
    These knit cotton animals have squeakers inside for a fun surprise!
  • Wood Ring Shaker Baby Rattle: $6.99
    This all-natural wooden baby rattle is a testament to simplicity. Handcrafted in Oregon.
  • Kid O Owl Wobble: $8.99
    Wobbly toys are classic baby fun, and Kid O’s line of wildlife wobbles are a great pick. Also comes in fox and raccoon.
  • Twin Sun Rattle: $6.99
    This twin-sun rattle produces a fascinating movement that encourages hand-eye coordination.
  • Cardinal Finger Puppet: $8.99
    Put a bird (puppet) on it (your finger)!
  • Kleynimals: $24.99
    Does your infant love your keys? That’s normal. Kleynimals, made of stainless steel, offer a better alternative.
  • Tommy Toot: $6.99
    It’s a man! It’s a whistle! No, it’s Tommy Toot!

Stocking_Adults

Grownups Need Stocking Stuff Too
Since when do kids get to have all the fun? Adults love stockings just as much as kids, so don’t leave your bigger loved ones out!

  • Ha! Ha! Moustache: $6.99
    Guess the moustache! This fun card game comes in Living People, Dead People and Awful People editions.
  • Joe Name It: $10.99
    Joe Name It combines trivia and numbers for plenty of party fun.
  • Classic Slinky: $5.99
    What more can be said about the classic metal slinky? It’s a must-have for anyone, anywhere, of any age, period.
  • Rulers of the World: $1.99
    Learn about the rulers of football, modern art, wine and more! Conveniently located on a sturdy wooden ruler.
  • LCR $8.99
    LCR, or Left Center Right, is a cutthroat game with special dice and the betting medium of your choice.
  • Kazoo: $2.49
    How can the Kazoodlers not include a kazoo? Musical fun or total annoyance: you decide!
  • Jaw Harp: $5.99
    The jaw harp is unique, interesting and bound to amaze your musically-inclined family and friends.
  • Wooden Slide Whistle: $3.99
    One of the most underrated instruments, the slide whistle has surprising range. Don’t underestimate the whistle!
  • Aloe Alin: $3.99
    Grownups LOVE aloe. Pot this aloe now and have a full-grown plant by summer — when you’ll really need it.
  • Crazy Aaron’s Thinking Putty: $11.99
    Whether you’re at the office or sitting at home, thinking putty comes in handy to relieve stress or get the mind working.

Stocking_Sensory

Stocking Stuffers for Sensory Needs
Kids with Sensory Processing Disorder often have different stocking stuffer needs. Fortunately, we’re well stocked to help!

  • Pop Toob: $1.49
    They bend! They expand! They make weird noises that will fascinate and captivate you for hours!
  • What’Zit: $3.99
    What’Zits are simple wooden blocks, connected by elastic. Twist them turn them, shape them however you want!
  • Sand Animals: $2.99
    Filled with sand and shaped like your favorite critters, Sand Animals are nice on the fingers and nice on the eyes.
  • Posh Ball Mini: $5.99
    Posh balls are covered in thin, soft elastic bristles. They feel fun on the skin and are safe to toss around too.
  • Dinosaur Squishables: $4.99
    I don’t know what exactly is in these dinos, but it makes for tons of squishy fun.
  • Smencils: $1.59
    Your writing never smelled so good! These colored pencils are scented with a wide variety of smells, from blueberry to black licorice.
  • Minesweep Lightup Ball: $2.99
    Squeeze it or bounce it and watch it light up! The minesweep ball is great visual and physical stimuli.
  • Zoo Putty: $3.49
    A zoo animal encased in squishy stuff, Zoo Putty is an adventure in a jar!
  • Wacky Tracks: $4.99 Wacky Tracks is a simple plastic chain that bends and holds, allowing kids to shape it however they want.

[Stump the Kazoodlers] Snow Days and Skype Play

Welcome back to another thrilling edition of Stump the Kazoodlers! After last week’s inaugural challenge, the Kazoodlers walked away unscathed, ready to tackle a harder shopping challenge. This week our customers up the ante with tough trials that test our toy talent. Will the Kazoodlers rise to the occasion? Or will they finally be stumped?

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[Stump the Kazoodlers] Button Pushers and Non-Girly Girls

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the greatest trial of toy knowledge Vancouver has ever seen! In this corner, wearing tentacle fingers and Shwings, are the Kazoodlers of Kazoodles (ooooo ahhhh applause!). In the other corner, represented by a veritable mountain of toys, is the frustration of not knowing what to buy for the kids in your life (boooo hisssssss). The contest is simple: The Kazoodlers will be given a hypothetical child to shop for and will then pick out a selection of toys they think works best. Ready? Let’s go!

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The True Cost of Toys, Part 2

Bruder makes a quality construction vehicle toys that last for years of play.

Bruder makes a quality construction vehicle toys that last for years of play.

This is the first of a three-part series that will examine the TRUE cost of toys in an effort to help you save money on those often expensive, all-important toy purchases. Don’t freak out, it’s easier than you think.

Part 2: Toys That Last

They’re two little words that punctuate the eardrums like a roll of warning thunder in the distance: “I’m bored.” You’ve bought hundreds of dollars worth of toys for your kids, you know they have active imaginations, and there’s always plenty to do outside, so why are they bored? We like to chalk it up to a number of excuses like laziness or even a case of attention deficit disorder. But what if the answer isn’t in their brain chemistry but in their toys?

Last week I talked about calculating the true cost of toys. The formula, as I mentioned, requires estimating the number of collective hours your child will likely play with a given toy before tossing it in the back of the closet for good. While it’s a very worthwhile formula, the nagging question that remains is how exactly you estimate, with any sort of accuracy, how well your kiddo will like that toy. That question can be answered by looking at “long-lasting play value.”

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The True Cost of Toys, Part 1

BrioPlay

This is the first of a three-part series that will examine the TRUE cost of toys in an effort to help you save money on those often expensive, all-important toy purchases. Don’t freak out, it’s easier than you think.

Part 1: Calculating the True Cost of Toys

If there’s one simple truth about kids, it’s that they will play. They don’t prefer to play, they won’t play if you insist, they WILL play no matter what. Since the dawn of mankind, adults have been giving children things to play with, whether it be polished rocks or Tickle Me Elmo. These things, what we in the biz call “toys,” are integral to a child’s development and therefore a matter of great interest to parents. But as toys get more extravagant (gone are the good ol’ hoop-and-stick days), they can cause more anguish for money-conscious parents trying to get the best bang for their buck.

The answer to the issue of finances is usually a hunt for good deals. And while Online Discount Warehouse or Big Box Store might save you $10 on that $50 toy, paying less at the register doesn’t necessarily mean you’re saving any money in the long run. This part’s important, so let me reiterate: Paying less doesn’t always save you money. Let me explain.

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5 Scientific Toys That Make Learning Fun

ScienceKids

Science is all the rage these days. And no, not just because Bill Nye the Science Guy is on “Dancing with the Stars.” Our educational system is focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as a way to keep kids up to date with our increasingly tech-centric world. And although schools can be a great place to hone those STEM skills, there’s nothing wrong with bringing science home to the play room.

As lovers of science ourselves, we have a trove of science games, activity sets and books to learn everything from geology to physics to biology to rocket science. There’s no way to highlight every cool science kit in the store, but here are some of our favorites! Continue reading

Put the Cool in Back to School

Whether you love it or hate it, the back-to-school season is upon us. If you’re not already up to your eyeballs in pens, pencils, protractors and paper you will be soon. But between your lists and the school’s lists and your kids’ lists, and in the midst of the stress of it all, it can be easy to forget that back to school shopping can be fun. Because fun is kind of our thing, here are a few items that help make it cool to go back to school.

Smencils

Smencils Original

It’s hard to improve on the classic pencil. Sure, you can make it triangular or paint it wild colors, but at the end of the day a pencil’s a pencil. A smencil, however, is completely different. Smencils are made from recycled newspaper, wrapped tightly and hardened around a graphite core. After they’re crafted, smencils get a dose of one of 10 different scents; from cola to waffle cone to papaya. But the scents aren’t all just for fun. For tests, pick up a peppermint-scented Smencil – a smell proven to stimulate brain activity and increase concentration.

You can pick up a classic #2 Smencil, or get creative with a set of colored Smencils. There’s nothing quite like a gummy-bear-scented paper on the industrial revolution.

Learning Wrap-Ups

Learning Wrapups

Between addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, not to mention fractions, percentages, probability and algebra, there are a lot of math rules to remember. Old-fashioned tables are fine, but they can be difficult for kids who learn with their hands. Learning Wrap-ups aim to solve the problem by making math a hands-on activity. The Wrap-ups come as sets of colored plastic keys. On either side of each key are notches with numbers, and in the middle is the number by which to multiply, divide, add or subtract. The budding mathematician winds a long string across the key, from the initial number on the left to the final solution on the right. After the key is all wound up, turn it over to see if you got it right!

It’s a simple game that gives the fidgety-handed a way to learn in a way that makes sense to them. We have Wrap-ups for addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, and state capitals. I guess you could say you’ll really get wrapped up in learning! Ha! If only they made Wrap-ups for puns!

Rulers of the World

RulersoftheWorld

Let’s be honest: Rulers are boring. They’re foot-long pieces of wood or plastic or metal, lined with tick marks and numbers blah blah blah. Fortunately, some brave souls over at Rich Frog have stepped up to the plate to bring rulers to their full potential. Their series, Rulers of the World, fills the otherwise blank backs of wooden rulers with lists and timelines of historical rulers – people of influence from different walks of life.

There are Rulers of the North, Rulers of the South, Rulers of Judaism, Rulers of Modern Art, African American Rulers, Native American Rulers and Great Women Rulers of Sports. There are rulers of rulers of science, education, art and almost every other facet of history. Rulers finally get their proper place in the back-to-school echelon of fun.

Flash of Brilliance Flash Cards

FlashBrillianceFront

Flash of Brilliance is all about honesty. When creator John Richardson was teaching his 1-year-old son vocabulary, he wasn’t satisfied with store-bought flash cards. “Too many cards didn’t show the actual item being named,” he writes on the FoB website. “They were cartoons, or photographs of stuffed animals. I wanted Stevie to know what an elephant looked like, not what a stuffed elephant looked like.” John decided to take things into his own hands.

The end result is a six-volume series of flash cards: animals, ABCs, outer space, bugs, dinosaurs, and numbers, shapes and colors. On the front of each card is a real photo, in order to keep kids learning in the realm of reality, and on the back are a few foreign translations and fun facts. It’s never too early to learn what the world really looks like.

In between trips to office supply stores, desperately in search of the perfect binder or specific kind of glue, stop by Kazoodles and pick up something fun! Remember, back to school shopping doesn’t always have to be a drag.