Thursday, December 8, 2011

My #ChiTag Experience #Giftguide

Whether it was because the children are a year older or because we knew more of what to expect, the Chicago Toy and game was a more relaxed and enjoyable experience for us this year. I really got to engage with some of the toy makers/manufacturers and find out more in depth about their toys and i'll be sharing some of my favorites in this post.

The Bogo from Razor was probably my 9 year old's favorite. He was determined to master this thing in one day, although it was his first time giving one of these try. Unfortunately for him, he had to give it up so that others could try it out and we could see what else was new and exciting. Of course it brought back childhood memories. This one has a twist though; it's been redesigned so that it can have more bounce by way of a bow assisting spring. I like that it's something my son actually wanted to do that meant getting some physical fitness in for his body.

Some of my personal favorites at ChiTag were these guys here. The red one is Brobo, and all the others are his friends. I especially liked the line of them that are designed for children who are afraid of the dark. You touch a certain body part, (the tail for the dog and the arm for all the others) to the chest, and doing so provides 5 minutes of light. The story of Brobo is that he is a futuristic small robot with a big heart and a huge imagination. It is my understanding that a cartoon and much more are in the works.Though the site for these guys is still pending public release, you can check out their Facebook Page.

I really enjoyed the board games presented by Maranda Enterprises. These games present a nice way to relax and just use your brain and have fun the old fashioned way. When I first looked at them, I guess I automatically assumed they would be complicated and I wouldn't feel like taking time to learn them with so much else to see. I'm glad I did stop to ask, because I found out that some were really just a twist on classics such as Dots and Connect Four, and others, though they would require more thought, were still fun and a sure way to exercise and develop your brain and thinking capacity. All of the games are designed so that there's never a tie, so there's always going to be a sure winner.
  I'd also seen a couple of teenagers (or tall tweens) playing with something called a Spring Ring, and just found out that it's made by Maranda Enterprises as well. Perfect for two players, and there are options to make for indoor or outdoor play.

What boy can resist some type of gun? Mine thought the Vapor gun was really cool. The ammo that goes with it is 90% water based and it has a cool squishy feeling to it. I think it was just perfect that they had a target practice setup. It looks like the site hasn't launched for these yet either, but Vapor Blaster is currently on Facebook.

One last toy i'd like to point out is the Poofin. Well, it's really not a toy, but something I found to be a unique way for kids to create, store and share memories. I think it's neat that if they don't have a predesigned mini pillow, a.k.a. charm, you can go to their site and create your own and have it sent to you. You stuff the charms off into the larger star pillow and you can take it along with you to show off the charms and share what sentimental value each has to you. Poofin also has a YouTube channel where you can check out some videos and get a better visual. 

If you'd like to check out my other photos taken during our ChiTag experience, you can find them here on my Facebook page.

*I received sponsorship to attend Chitag along with swag to bring home. I chose some of my favorites to share with you and the views and opinions expressed are my own.