Category Archives: Toys

Shopping for gifts made easier with Wicked Uncle

** Disclosure – I was provided with a voucher code from Wicked Uncle in return for my honest review. All opinions are my own and this is no way affects the integrity of the post. Enjoy**

Do you struggle to know what gifts to buy people? We all have that friend or family member who has everything. What about the children in your family? Then there’s the never-ending kids birthday parties where you know nothing about the child. It’s often difficult to know what they might like. This is where Wicked Uncle becomes your gift shopping guru.

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About  Wicked Uncle

Wicked Uncle offer a service where-by they scour the world for toys that are that little bit different, unusual and great fun. Why spend hours looking through shops and search engines when Wicked Uncle does it for you.Not only does Wicked Uncle find and compile a list of the best gifts, they also test them. Puzzles are made, games are played and T-shirt’s are worn. Many of the toys they select are put through their paces by dedicated children.

Wicked Uncle are so named because they felt it sounded cool. “Wicked” may not be the term that’s “down with the kids” nowadays but their products certainly are. They currently offer an award-winning service, with 99% outstanding customer service reviews on Feefo.

The website is really easy to navigate. The menu gives you the option to choose the intended gift recipients age and gender. Whilst Wicked Uncle are aware that both genders can like an item, many still find it useful to search items by male or female. There is the option to select all if you don’t want to select categories by gender.

Once you’ve chosen your gift, you have the option to choose from a selection of gift wrap options, complete with handwritten card. They also offer a reminder service in case, like me, you have 15 nieces and nephews and struggle to remember all their birthdays.

Wicked Uncle isn’t just useful for buying children’s gifts. They also have a Big Kidz section for ages 12 to infinity. Me and hubs are total big kids at heart and love a novelty item. Some of the items that caught my eye, I’ve honestly never seen before.

Magnetic Football Tables – I can imagine this being a little (or big) football lovers dream.

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Image courtesy of www.wickeduncle.co.uk

100 ways to win a tenner –  I can see this being a hit with students, pub goers or just a good laugh round the table Christmas day.

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Image courtesy of www.wickeduncle.co.uk

Piano Playing Plant Pot, Musical Leaves! – Gifts don’t get more unique than this! Note the green strip around the pot, this changes colour. It’s a piano playing, bluetooth-speaking, light up plant pot. The plant isn’t included. You can add or grow any in the pot. Although Wicked Uncle recommend you steer clear of a cactus. I can’t say I’m not massively intrigued.

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Image courtesy of www.wickeduncle.co.uk

My Very Own Rainbow, rainbow projector – I literally didn’t know these existed! The only reason I didn’t order one is because George already has an abundance of night lights and light projectors. I’m sure I won’t be able to resist for too long. Heck I might even get one for my own bedroom. Can you imagine having another child and telling them “yeah you was conceived under a rainbow”. I’m laughing so much right now, but I genuinely want one of these in my life.

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Image courtesy of www.wickeduncle.co.uk

So that’s enough of what I could have ordered and here’s what I did order. So we recently celebrated George’s 4th birthday. In the run up to his birthday he would wake each morning and ask “Is it my birthday today?” I thought it must be horrible to not know when your birthday is.

So I made a calendar on the whiteboard that he could count down and cross off the days until Halloween, his birthday and his birthday party. George responded really well to this and enjoyed coming down each morning and taking it upon himself to cross of the days.

With this in mind, I thought he would really enjoy this Melissa and Doug My Magnetic Daily Calendar – Wooden.  This is great for learning the days of the week, months, years, seasons and certain recognised days like Halloween, remembrance day and alike.

George loves looking out the window and choosing from the options for the day’s weather and he often changes this as the day progresses, along with his moods in the “I feel” section.

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The other thing I purchased because it was unusual and I hadn’t seen one before, my Dad was in awe of the concept. Tub Time Grand Prix – 36 piece set. Complete with rubber duck style race cars, this foam race track floats on water!

It has foam cars, trophies and other accessories that stick to the bath or tiles when damp. There’s also a handy net with suckers to attach to the wall to store it all when you are done. George literally cannot get enough of this and I imagine we will use it in the paddling pool during the summer also.

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My verdict

In my family the name Wicked Auntie would be more apt. The women tend to be in charge of buying the gifts. The first the men know about what has been bought is when they see the person open it. Hubs’ family still wouldn’t get any gifts if it wasn’t for me. With a tally of 15 nieces and nephews I’m most defo the Wicked Auntie, in the coolest sense of the word I hope.

I think Wicked Uncle are fab. They are UK based and they have a real fun, family vibe. They present themselves as being approachable and willing to ensure their customers are happy. Price wise I have done a few comparisons and their prices are not dissimilar to those on the high street.

The products we received were a beautiful quality and they arrived packaged in a box size suitable for the items contained. I shall definitely be using Wicked Uncle in the not too distant future.

Rather weirdly, I had a job position within Wicked Uncle pop up on my phone. Secret I-Phone spies at work again. Looking at the salary on the advert made me realise not only do Wicked Uncle value their customers, they appear to value their staff too. I often worry that our online order come at a price for some poor humans soul so this is reassuring.

So what are you waiting for? Head over to the Wicked Uncle website and getting hunting for your Chrimbo gifts.

Christmas in July – Tomy Toys UK

I recently attended the Tomy Christmas in July Event and it was a really informative and fun day, albeit bizarre when it’s 32 degrees celsius outside. George had great fun testing out all the latest toys. These have either recently been released or shall be available to buy in time for Christmas 2018.

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I’m sure most of you have heard of TOMY Toys but how much do your really know about them?

I was lucky enough on the day to listen to a talk from Marketing Lead for Tomy, Tom Ueshima who had travelled over from Japan. He explained how Tomy originated as a Japanese toy manufacturer. After making toys for over 90 years, the company originally manufactured toy aeroplanes.

Whilst Tomy UK was established in 1982, an extension of Takara Tomy in Japan. Tomy is actually ONE of the top FIVE toy companies in the world! I honestly didn’t realise just how much of the market Tomy dominates.

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Fundamentally children and the Good Toy Guide

I was also fortunate to meet Amanda from Fundamentally children who have partnered with Tomy. Fundamentally children endorse products listed in The Good Toy Guide.

The guide can help you choose the right toy, app or product for a child based on age, type or skill they will develop. I’m a big believer in children learning through play. I’ve witnessed it with George. I wasn’t aware of this guide. I heard of it but I didn’t understand how valuable it is.

Fundamentally Children is an organisation dedicated to helping children develop skills through play. 

Their vision is;

To help create a world where children are able to fulfil their potential and develop the skills they need to thrive throughout their lives. whilst enjoying a safe, happy and playful childhood.

Tomy is one of the first brands who have committed to submitting every item in their range to the fundamentally children independent evaluation. The good toy guide are selective about who they work with so this is a big tick for Tomy.

In order to be approved for the guide, a toy has to have 9 out of the 15 marks. The toys are tested by children, observed by play workers. By making this commitment Tomy are opening themselves up to scrutiny.

Some of the things the guide look for are what happens the first 5 minutes after a child receives a toy. Following on, the next half an hour do they get bored? Do they share it with their friends? Do they develop a new skill or learn something new. Fundamentally children also organise in Store play days in toy store Smyths and they also attended this years 3ft festival in Chelmsford, Essex (my local).

Fab toys to look out for.

As we were shown around the games room, we recognised a familiar face from our visit to Kidtropolis back in October last year. George instantly remembered the ladies face and sat down to play one of the new must haves for Christmas 2018, Run-Around-hamster. This is available from Smyths for ages 5+ at the RRP £22.99.

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Who needs subbuteo when you have robotic football in the form of Soccerborg! After this years World Cup excitement, we are definitely more hyped than usual for footie games. One controller can control up to 4 robots. Each set comes with 2 robots 2 controllers 2 balls, 2 goals.  Age 6+. Available from Asda and Amazon at the RRP £59.99.

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Some of the favs that caught the boys eyes were Stinkbomz . You open the capsule to reveal one of 8 Stinkbomz. Each with their own smell and sounds. None of them were as offensively smelling to me as the name suggests, thankfully. RRP £9.99.

I was also embarrassingly excited to see the Thomas and Friends Big Loader set still being made. I remember playing with this when I was younger with my younger nephew or cousin.  This is available for RRP £34.99 in Smyths, Amazon and Toymaster.

Hubs and George (pictured below), had a blast racing remote control Tractors. Whilst I listened to some of the informative talks on throughout the event, George was really engrossed in playing with the hugely realistic Britains farming toys. The detail and quality was spectacular as the vehicles are a 1:32 scale of the originals. Ranging from £21.99-29.99 they really are a worthy investment for any agricultural enthusiasts.

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Before attending the Christmas in July event, I hadn’t realised that Tomy have many sub brands including AquaDoodle and Lamaze. We totally need to upgrade our Aquadoodle that we purchased for George’s 1st birthday.

The new Super Rainbow Deluxe reveals a scene underneath and retails at £24.99 in Smyths, Amazon and Argos. George goes crazy for the Aquadoodle Designer Dress advert when it’s on tele.

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Another sub brand of Tomy, Kii-Pix, have developed a smartphone picture printer you can use on the go. It’s the perfect pressie for the tween/teen in your life.

They come in pink, blue and black and work without any batteries, wifi or the need to install an app. I could make great use of one of these. See the Christmas tree montage they created below. Along with the fab sushi art to promote the brand.

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Moving on to the baby range. If and when our dreams of having another baby happen I am without a doubt getting some of the more modern products from the Boon range. For George we have our eye on the Frog Pod available from Amazon RRP £21.99.

The Lamaze Spin and Explore garden gym adds a new perspective to tummy time. The centre Ladybird, slowly spins round giving your baby their own little fairground in your front room. RRP £38.99 from Argos.

The Lamaze 4-in-1 play gym evolves into a fun teepee for toddlers if you have children of varying ages. It retails at £69.99 from Debenhams.

I hope you have enjoyed reading all about our day and I hope I will be bringing to you more posts in collaboration with Tomy.

Do you have any of these products? Are there any that catch your eye?

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger