• The Playful Walnut Archive

    Less than one week until Easter; are your baskets ready for stuffing? Gone are the days when I was a kid, and chocolate bunnies and jelly beans would suffice. Ever since the Easter Bunny has stepped things up a notch to include toys and other goodies, we’ve been on the hunt ourselves in search of fun favors. If you happen to have a new baby in the family this spring, you’ll want to make this Easter egg-stra special (and candy-free). We love the Squeakaboos line from Babalu. These brightly colored, soft plush rattles are sized just right for little hands. Babies can squeeze the handle to hear them squeak, and they can discover a jingly rattle and crinkly sound inside each character’s head. With eight [&hellip

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    Get a grip already, Mother Nature! What’s with the one nice day that taunts us with sunny skies and mild temps….only to be faced with tomorrow’s promise of cold rain and highs in the low 40s? It’s making everyone a little bit stir crazy, and I’m not just talking about the kids! Well, if there’s anything this erratic season is teaching us, it’s to seize the day and take advantage of the outdoors whenever the weather permits. Today was one of those days meant to spent outside, so after homework time, we happily hit the backyard to try out a new toy.  Nerf Sports Bash Ball is, hands down, the best excuse to play a game of catch, soccer, dodgeball…you name it. You may wonder, [&hellip

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    Happy April Fool’s Day! Have you played any pranks on your kids today? While we haven’t quite gotten our game on just yet, some other folks apparently have. Skip Hop is up to its old tricks, with the perfect gag gift for your favorite betting baby. Baby’s First Slot Machine is a playful nod to that little bundle of love that manages to take a big bite of your bank account each and every month. Now your little one can try her luck and see if she can win big…or at least, make a dent in her diaper budget. Three owls in a row that pay for a new pair of shoes? Now that’s a HOOT! We’ll just consider ourselves blessed that we get a [&hellip

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    We don’t know about you, but we’re having a hard time trying to get out of this winter rut. Sure, the calendar says spring, but it feels more like January. To help turn our thoughts to warmer weather, we decided to head to the beach…well, maybe not yet, but at least the sand and sea can inspire us to be creative. We had a chance to check out the Beach and Nature Company’s Ocean Charms Jewelry Making Kit, and loved what could be made in one afternoon, in any season. This all-included kit contains everything needed to make three cord necklaces that make for polished presents. The pre-measured plaster simplifies the design process, so you know exactly how much to use to make your charms. [&hellip

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    When it comes to favorite pigs, Miss Piggy will always be at the top of my famiy’s list. But coming in at a close second is none other than Peppa Pig, the precocious preschooler from across the pond whose everyday antics add up to a ton of fun. Both my girls enjoy her show on Nick Jr. (even if the 4th grader refuses to admit it!), as they tune in to find out what type of mischief (er, fun) Peppa and her brother George will get into this time. Now, for the first time in the U.S., Peppa makes her DVD debut with the just-released Peppa Pig: My Birthday Party, a compilation of 14 episodes that is pure piggie bliss. Whether they are be treated [&hellip

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    We always get psyched when TV shows make their debut. For the grown-ups, we’re head over heels for True Detective and holding our breath for Believe. For the kiddos, there’s a slew of new educational and entertaining TV series coming to Nickelodeon later this year/early 2015, with plenty of crowd-pleasing choices for your favorite preschooler. (We’re particularly excited for the latest Fresh Beat installment!) Here’s the scoop on what to watch and when: ·         Dora and Friends: Into the City!  is set in a fictional, pan-Latino city, where Dora is 10 years old, in school and at the center of a group that works together to give back to the community. This show aims to teach Spanish and introduces new educational areas to the curriculum, [&hellip

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    Because my 5-year-old is infatuated with all things bunny these days, Easter can’t come soon enough this year. And after the winter we’ve all just endured, I don’t mind adding some signs of early spring to our home decor. This season’s Pottery Barn Kids catalog is teeming with tons of Easter goodies to outfit your home in its Sunday finest. Top on our hunt for Easter finds that make a statement  is a tabletop runner, and we’ve found just the one. The Peter Rabbit Table Runner features watercolor-hued illustrations taken from the pages of the classic children’s book: the perfect complement to any dining room that prides itself on timeless style. And if you’ll be hosting the holiday this year, and want to turn your [&hellip

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    Can we fast-forward to spring already? These 20-degree mornings are getting boring already, and my kids REALLY need to get outside and be…well, kids. Remnants of dirty snow doesn’t lend itself well to sledding, and it’s still too cold for bikes and scooters. With the forecast calling for near 50-degree temperatures this Saturday, you can bet your bippy I’ll be shuffling those kids out the back door faster than you can say springtime. Because no parent is immune to the cries of “but there’s nothing to dooooo…,” may we offer a suggestion? Diggin Active’s Squap for ages 6 and up turns an ordinary game of catch into something extraordinary. Easy to play, this game doesn’t involve a steep learning curve and goes right out of [&hellip

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    They say that cats have nine lives, but if there’s one kitty who’s exceeded all expectations, it’s The Cat in the Hat. The famous feline is, of course, the brainchild of Dr. Seuss who would have turned 110 year old this coming Sunday (now that’s a lot of birthday candles!). In honor of his special day, PBS Kids is airing an all-new, one-hour The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That! special on Monday, March 3rd, followed by new half-hour episodes for the remainder of the week. My 5-year-old loves to start her day being entertained by the Cat’s clever antics. It doesn’t hurt that she learns a thing or two along the way. This coming week, viewers will be treated to different [&hellip

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    Did you hear the news that KISS won’t be performing during their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this spring? The band nixed the idea once they realized the original line-up wouldn’t be on stage together. If you happen to be a devoted fan who’s bummed out that you won’t get a chance to see the iconic 70s band known for its music almost as much as its make-up, then consider making them “play nice” with their latest counterparts. Uglydoll has just released its own tribute to the band with a line of plush dolls that mirror each band member. Outfitted as their alter-ego comic book characters, the Uglydoll KISS assortment includes OX Demon, Wage The Spaceman, Big Toe Starchild and Babo [&hellip

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