hiplittleone

Oct 172019
 

Like most parents we always try to fulfil our children’s birthday wishes for as much as that is possible. It is obvious that snakes are out of the question (Juliet), iPads/iPhones not necessary (Tommie) and unicorns impossible to get your hands on (Harriet), however we never thought walkie talkies would be such a tricky request! Our little super spy Sybil has been asking for walkie talkies for well over a year, and 8 months after her birthday her wish has finally come true:

For months and months we researched and compared different walkie talkies, trying to find the right balance between quality, durability, price and most of all safety but (to Sybil’s great disappointment) there was absolutely nothing out there that ticked all the boxes. When we recently came across the new KidiGear Walkie Talkies (RRP $49.95, ages 5+) we immediately knew our search was over and we’ve most definitely found our match.

Whether your child is a secret spy, police officer, detective, adventure seeker or treasure hunter, these kid-safe walkie talkies are a must-have for any special mission. Designed by the toy-experts at VTech the KidiGear Walkie Talkies are designed with real kids in mind, they are simple to use and comfortable to hold with rounded corners for safe play. On the front they even have a large easy-to-read LCD display, after all modern kids need trendy gear.

Sybil mostly dreamed of chatting to her sisters from her bedroom or while on a bush walk or scavenger hunt in our neighbourhood, but to her big delight the KidiGear Walkie Talkies are much more than a two-way radio. Aside from communicating in walkie talkie mode, the two units can compete in four different 2-player games and send each other fun messages.

Kids can choose from a selection pre-loaded pictures/messages on the screen and respond with simple yes/no answers, even young children can do it. Because the messages are pre-loaded there is no risk of inappropriate content, just another way VTech keeps your children safe. These little secret texts are perfect for situations where audible radio-chats are not an option, no one will know you’re quietly communicating!

Safety has always been our main concern for any walkie talkie purchase. Most of the walkie talkies with a decent range and nice clear sound use UHF channels. This comes with a big risk of kids accidentally overhearing conversations of others using the same public channels (eg. truck drivers), people listening to your children’s chatter or even worse: strangers making contact with your precious children. KidiGear Walkie Talkies completely take away that fear by using a clear and secure digital connection, keeping your children and their adventures safe and sound within a huge 200m range.

KidiGear Walkie Talkies are available at Big W, JB Hi-Fi, good toy stores across Australia and selected online retailers.

To find out more about VTech, to take a closer look at the KidiGear Walkie Talkies and to locate a stockist near you visit www.vtech.com.au.

Oct 112019
 

And that’s a wrap, two weeks of school holidays gone in a flash! Aside from a week with sick kids we had a lovely time soaking up the sunshine and enjoyed lots of playdates, the fuller the house the better. Thanks to a long overdue playroom-makeover the kids had plenty of room and new (or rediscovered) toys to keep them busy. The extra floor space has come in real handy for Tommie’s newest set of wheels:

Turbo Force Racers (RRP $29.95, ages 4-10) are the ultimate combination of portable power, cool cars and R/C rides. Simply use the adjustable strap to secure your Turbo Force Racer around your wrist and you’ll always have your dream ride within hand’s reach!

The Turbo Force Racer vehicles may be compact in size, but they are big in performance and super portable. The key to this motor magic is in the special wristband: Not only does it provide safe car storage/transport AND charges the vehicle, it is also the remote control that will make your car perform the coolest tricks and cross the finish line. We love that you can take your car everywhere and charge it ‘on the go’ too, it’s perfect for holiday trips!

On the wristband you’ll find your six direction arrows as well as three other buttons: Talk, Sound and Turbo. The music and sound buttons will play controller-car chats and background music to which the vehicle will respond. Before you can activate the Turbo button you will need to shake your wrist band repeatedly to build up your boost, the controller will tell you when your Turbo Boost is ready to use.

To recharge your Turbo Force Racer for the next speed session simply pop the car back on the Turbo Station wristband, as soon as the lights stop flashing you’re fully charged and good to go. Did you know you can even race two Turbo Force Racers against each other? Just make sure each of the vehicles is tuned to its own channel using the channel switch to avoid channel confusion. May the fastest sibling driver/friend driver win!

Hip Tip: If you think you’ve got what it takes, put your racing skills to the test on the loops, ramps and jumps of the Turbo Force Racers Race Track (RRP $89.95, sold separately).

Turbo Force Racers are available in blue, red, green and yellow and you can find them at Big W, select online stores and good independent toy retailers across Australia.

To find out more about Turbo Force Racers, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.vtech.com.au.

Oct 102019
 

In the latest heart-stopping Alex Rider release Secret Weapon, teen-turned-agent Alex Rider travels across the globe to stop evil enemies in their tracks. From kidnappers to terrorist gangs and from sneaky ex-army personnel to smooth criminals and more, Alex will encounter all kinds of troublemakers as he tries to complete a range of new MI6 missions. Alex Rider: Secret Weapon made the perfect holiday-read for our 11-year adrenaline-junkie, you can read his thoughts below:

Talented teenage super-spy Alex Rider, who works for the British Intelligence Service MI6, is a magnet for trouble. Alex will be pushed to the limit in seven action-packed adventures, each story is full of surprises and will keep you guessing what will happen next. Alex Rider stories are perfect for bored, adventure-seeking kids, they sure kept me entertained and I couldn’t put the book down!

There is nothing ordinary about Alex Rider’s life and nothing is as it seems: A free chocolate on the way to the dentist lands Alex in a secret hide-out in the midst of a food poisoning epidemic and a para-sailing trip in France takes a scary turn when the boat driver has a seizure and Alex has to take the wheel. Then there is a kidnap attempt and a laptop full of valuable information, a hunt for a hidden invention and a daring escape from jail by a dangerous drug-dealer who is out for revenge. And let’s not forget the mysterious car crash that Alex can’t remember at all…

I really enjoyed this story collection by author Anthony Horowitz. I hadn’t read the rest of the Alex Rider series before I read ‘Secret Weapon’, but now I definitely want to! I’ll be checking the school library once school goes back.

To find out more about Walker Books and to take a closer look at the Alex Rider series visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of ‘Alex Rider: Secret Weapon’ (RRP $16.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck!

Sep 262019
 

In many ways our little miss 9 is a lot like her mama, but when it comes to her favourite animals Juliet is most definitely not mine! Where I love the furry, soft, cuddly kind she goes crazy for scaly and scary, slimy and slippery ones that give me the shivers just thinking about them. She loves learning all about these creepy creatures so this gorgeous Flying Eye Books title has her name all over it:

Fanatical about Frogs (RRP $27.99) is a delightful combination of art and amphibians. Across 40 beautifully decorated pages well-known British illustrator Owen Davey introduces young readers to all kinds of interesting facts about frogs, before you know it your budding biologist will be quite the frog expert!

From a desert rain frog to the American bullfrog, from the Vietnamese mossy frog to a starry night reed frog and many more, you have never seen a bigger collection of frogs before. How small/big are different types of frogs and what makes them special? Where do they live and how do they grow? What sounds do frogs make and which frogs should you stay far away from? If you have a froggy question this book is bound to have the answer! Even the frog that turns into a handsome prince gets a little mention.

To find out more about Walker Books and to take a closer look at ‘Fanatical about Frogs’ visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of Fanatical about Frogs (RRP $27.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck!

Sep 172019
 

Spring is finally here and we are so excited about the warmer weather! After having been cooped up inside during the dark, rainy months we are soaking up the sunshine and heading outside when we can. The new season calls for a fresh look and stylish do and going by the brand new HairDooz range bold and bright is the way to go:

Featuring twelve cool new dooz in the prettiest of neon shades the new HairDooz Neonz are definitely eye-catching. Pixie, Sparkle, Crystal, Lilly, Skye or Candy… who will you find in your swivelling salon chair today? Twist the bottle door to unveal your latest client and check out her fresh spring look and sniff her frooty scent. Even the bottle has had a colour makeover and is now a funky neon orange!

While true collectors will no doubt be on the lookout for the rare ‘Glow in the Dark’ treasure (a party ready doll with a festive Braidy Updoo), we actually lost our heart to Wavy Rave Doo with her long, luscious locks in blue, pink and yellow. Securely seated on her salon seat you can store your Doo bestie in her bottle, display it on a shelf/cupboard or use the suction cup to create a floating chair for your mirror or a window.

There are twelve gorgeous HairDooz Neonz to collect and you can find the range at your local Kmart, Big W, Target, Woolworths, Coles, Toymate, Toyworld and Mr. Toys store or online.

Thanks to the release of the adorable new MiniDooz you can now really take your Doo with you, anywhere and anytime. Each of the twelve tiny MiniDooz girls is packed in the sweetest nail polish – shaped salon bottle, how sweet is that? We love that you can flip open the bottle lid (hair dryer style!) to take a sneak peek at your mini’s stylish doo… Will you be one of the first to discover the limited edition Glitzy Glama Fuzzidoo? We were and she is super sparkly!

Not only does their compact size make these little ladies the perfect companion for backpacks and dress pockets, MiniDooz are also designed to slide on top of your favourite pencil or pen. Add to that the familiar suction cup to build a floating seat and a bonus sheet of six cheeky mark nail stickers and we can safely say that this new HairDooz range has nailed it!

Pop into your local Kmart, Big W, Woolworths, Toymate or Mr. Toys store or online to start your MiniDooz collection.

Hip Tip: While the cute MiniDooz bottles come in a range of bright colours, these colours do not necessarily represent which Doo is inside so it will always be a surprise!

To find out more about HairDooz, to meet the different characters and to locate a stockist near you visit www.hairdooz.net.

Sep 162019
 

I’m sure by now you’ve all spotted the Coles ‘I’m Perfect’ fresh produce range and the ‘Odd Bunch’ section at Woolworths, but here’s a delightfully different alternative you’ve (most likely) not heard of before:

Dutch social enterprise Kromkommer (Krom means crooked, Komkommer means cucumber) has joined forces with sustainable play specialist and multiple award-winner Plan Toys to bring funky formed fruit and vegetables to toy kitchens around the globe. Grab a quirky apple and bumpy pear, add a two-legged carrot and heart-shaped tomato, throw in a curvy cucumber and you’ve got the Wonky Fruit & Vegetable Playset.

The Wonky Fruit & Vegetables Playset (RRP $50.99, 18 months+) is a powerful platter in many ways: It encourages children to use their imagination and grow social skills during pretend play, it helps budding chefs to develop fine motor skills as they cut their food with the (toddler-safe) toy knife, it stimulates logical thinking as kids match the food halves to make pairs, it teaches children about different fruits and vegetables and the importance of healthy eating habits AND it shows them that fruit and vegetables come in many perfectly imperfect shapes that are all tasty and worthy!

Loved and cherished across the globe Plan Toys are made from replenishable rubberwood which is preservative free and naturally processed. No harmful additives or colourings are used during manufacturing and the carefully selected water-based paints are safety certified, making Plan Toys a fantastic sustainable choice for modern eco-conscious parents. After all we all know pretend meals sometimes involve real bites or cheeky chomps and your child’s safety is Plan Toys’ priority.

Australian families can find the Wonky Fruit & Vegetable Playset at Knock On Wood ToysThe Coffee Apple, Amazon and Twigs Toy Boutique. Enjoy your meal!

To find out more about Plan Toys, to take a closer look at the Wonky Fruit & Vegetable Playset and to locate a stockist near you visit www.plantoys.com.

For your chance to win a Wonky Fruit & Vegetables Playset (RRP $50.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck.

Sep 102019
 

Sometimes it is hard to picture just how big Australia is. There is still so much our family would like to see of, do in and learn about our beautiful country and (until then) my children thoroughly enjoy exploring our nation on paper. Award-winning artist Maree Coote has expertly combined her love of Australia, art and the alphabet into this sweet picture book:

Letters from Australia (RRP $29.99) is a fabulous celebration of all the things that make Australia special and unique using the magic of the alphabet. The gorgeous illustrations depict our native animals and nature, our  famous sights, well known characters and more with each picture built entirely out of letters.

What a unique way to look at Australia in a whole new way and at the same time practising the alphabet too. ‘Letters from Australia’ is a great tool for parents and educators to build letter recognition, after all every child loves a game of seek and find. It would also make a delightful Aussie souvenir for young readers living overseas so we’ll definitely pack a copy or two for our next European adventure.

To find out more about Walker Books and to take a look at Letters from Australia visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of Letters from Australia (RRP $29.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck!