Archive | May, 2012

It’s BBQ Role Play Time

30 May
Haba Sizzle and Grill

BBQ time

Well the past week has been truly gorgeous and I’m sure plenty of you have been indulging in al fresco outdoor dining and BBQs.   Kids love to copy what adults are doing and the latest toy to arrive at ToyBoxLive HQ is the HABA Grill Set Sizzle Expert.  This set offers children the opportunity to be involved in the cooking too, safely on their own cardboard BBQ with pretend play fabric food.

Role Paly BBQ

Enjoy Role Palying with this pretend BBQ

The box it comes in looks stunning and HABA really is a premium brand that deserves to be looked after and passed on for others to enjoy.  The only thing that disappoints me with this product is that the grill is made of cardboard and I’m wary as to how long it will last with kids running about and playing, I’d be more comfortable paying £35.99 if the grill was made of plastic making it more durable.

Sizzle Grill

Sizzle Grill Role Play Time

We enjoyed playing with it and it is available to rent as part of your  Toy Hire Package.   Perfect for this time of year, you can get all the family involved whilst having fun in the sun.

The Jet Set Flopsy Bunny

29 May

When we had T the one thing my husband and I agreed on was that we would still do everything that we would have done pre child and this included many of our adventures abroad.

So far our daughter who is only two has become something of a jet setter.

Flopsy Bunny has been one of  T’s favourite teddies since she was born it has always been in her cot since she was about a week old.  When she was about 6 months old she used to rub it’s ears against her face and it helped her to go to sleep.  Just before she turned one it came on a Caribbean cruise with us and then it came skiing to Courchevelle where she took her first steps.  Flopsy bunny was also T’s plus one at our wedding.

Flopsy bunny has enjoyed many of T’s adventures so far with us shes been to Spain, France, Carribean, Austria and many places throughout the UK, being so well traveled we have done well for her to survive so long without going missing.  Recently though we flew to Cannes and left the beloved Flopsy bunny at Cannes airport.  She was devastated and so were we, how could we have lost Flopsy.  As soon as we got back I called the airport who confirmed it was there so my husband set about a rescue mission and posted about Flopsy’s unfortunate circumstances on a flying forum

“On the way back we left my daughters favorite teddy in the airport, its a grey rabbit and the airport have confirmed it is still there… all alone… and it can’t even speak french!  Is anyone flying to Cannes anytime soon who would like to help on a rescue mission to bring flopsy rabbit back to the UK?”

London Executive Aviation were in Cannes over the weekend and were alerted to the forum post by one of their pilots who offered to fly Flopsy Bunny back to the UK.  Flopsy was brought back to safety and back to the arms of T who was delighted to have her back.  We can not thank enough.  Next time I may just get my husband to leave me – then maybe I can fly back via private jet 🙂 legacy jet

Flopsy Bunny Flying back to the UK on a Legacy Jet

I hope you’ve enjoyed this story of my own experience, I wanted to highlight that at ToyBoxLive we understand that if your child falls in love with a toy they may not want to send it back which is why we give you the option to buy the toy at a discounted rate.

Missing Toy Comes Home

I’m looking forward to many more happy adventures with Flopsy Bunny and hopefully no more rescue missions.

Great Gizmos Tractor and Trailer

18 May

And My Terror of the self assembly ride on toy


Self assembly really isn’t my strong point although I am getting better.

Even though the instructions show what you need and how to do it for some reason I still end up doing it wrong.  My worst self assembly to date has to be the Little Tikes Cozy Coupe and that four hour nightmare still haunts me.

When the Great Gizmos Tractor and Trailer arrived in a somewhat smaller box I felt a sigh of relief that this box was nice and small however part of me was still wondering how much time this ride on would take to assemble.  Having become more accomplished since setting up ToyBoxLive I was determined not to be defeated and quickly got on with emptying the contents of the box like an excited child.

The small box caused a little concern, would the Great Gizmos Tractor and Trailer be substantial enough to take the weight and vigour of a child? I laid the parts out on the kitchen work top and have to admit I didn’t think it looked up to much.

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I needn’t have worried this was clearly one of those toys where “the best things come in small packages” apply everything about it exudes confidence and that was clear once it was fully assembled and put to the test by a ferocious two year old.

The dreaded assembly

I set to work following the instructions and getting everything made up.

The first lot of instructions involved constructing the tractor which was a pretty straight forward task.  I used the following tools, Philips screw driver and a hammer, you might also want to find a short Philips screw driver as fastening some of the screws requires you to have tiny hands and this was difficult.

There was a little fiddly screw that you had to put into the steering wheel shown above in the picture that was quite easy to miss.   Make sure you put the base pole in (which the front wheels attach to) before putting the screw into the steering wheel hole. I did this wrong to begin with and then had to do again.  The instructions really aren’t clear.

This picture demonstrates how difficult it was to screw in the screws I had to get a smaller Philips screw driver to do a bit and then use a normal one to finish it off.  There are four screws in total which fasten the seat to the base.

The next bit was a lot trickier so I got my hubby to help out as he hammered on the hub caps which fixed the wheels in place.  I personally found these really difficult to hammer on.

Assembly of the Tractor took just 30 minutes which I think is quite reasonable for a ride on toy as sometimes you can spend hours on these things.

If you decided you want to hire the Great Gizmos Tractor and Trailer from ToyBoxLive as part of your toy hire package it will come fully assembled so you don’t have to waste any precious playtime and can get straight on with enjoying it.

Once the tractor was built my little one couldn’t wait to get on it and with some guests arriving with their two children, I thought I’d leave the trailer part till later to avoid losing any of the parts.  The little ones boy (3) and girl (2) were so obsessed with playing with it, a good 2 hours passed as we all managed to catch up on some adult conversation.

Despite it being what you might consider a boys toy it was a good all rounder even just as the tractor without the trailer.

Hire Great Gizmos Tractor Trailer

There’s the obvious role playing benefits but also children learn hand eye co-ordination and balance with ride-ons.

The instructions clearly say that shoes should be worn however my daughter currently has a thing about taking her shoes and socks off and has subsequently ran over her feet so make sure shoes are worn, they are supervised by an adult and is only used as single passenger.

A few days later after the tractor had been on numerous journeys with us (“is tractor coming to Grandmas” had become a non stop question), I finally convinced the hubby that he should tackle the trailer which he did with in just 15 minutes.


So here’s the summary…difficult to assemble so make sure you have some help handy, once assembled it’s light weight, slim and sleek in design and perfect to take with you when you are out and about visiting friends and family.  Suitable for children aged 1 – 3 years and is available to buy from BrightSparkToys for £45.98.  Or you can hire it from ToyBoxLive as part of your toy rental package.

Tumblekins School Bus

9 May

When this little bundle of tumbling fun arrived it really made us all smile.

With it’s charming wooden good looks, this school bus couldn’t wait to be played with. The packaging it came in was a really tough plastic and we were all just dying to get into it…don’t you just hate it when you try to open plastic packaging with your hands and you realise that really you should have got the scissors to start off with.

The Tumblekins School Bus is made of real wood and suitable for 12 months+ it has lots of character and plenty of personality.  The two characters were equally as stylish as the bus itself, one obviously a girl dressed in pink with blonde hair (not real hair obviously) and the other a boy dressed in green with brown hair.

A wooden bus and a couple of characters may seem quite normal but the way this bus can be played with and interacted with is very different; The bus has a really simple mechanism in the wheels which means the school children tumble as the bus is pushed along.

For ToyBoxLive we are interested in what play value children will get out of it and our 2 year old reviewer was not disappointed she absolutely loved playing with it.  She whizzed it around the kitchen, through the hallway and even started singing the wheels on the bus, the other interesting thing that she did was role play a story in her very own words with the characters.

Tumblekins School Bus

For the minimalist or fashion conscious it is pleasant on the eye and could easily be displayed on a shelf or in the lounge. An easy toy that will be played with again and again.

All in all we love it and this is why

  1. Develops hand eye co-ordination
  2. Teaches children about transport
  3. Encourages role play activities
  4. Interactive for parent/carer and child
  5. Easy to clean

You can buy the Tumblekins school bus for £15.98 from Bright Sparks Toys or you can add it to your toy hire package on ToyBoxLive. All in all a lovely wooden toy which you can add to your toy rental package today