hiplittleone

Nov 242019
 

VTech

After five girls it seems I had totally forgotten how loud, cheeky and active little boys can be. Ted has turned into a big, boisterous two year old who never sits still. He loves noise (he has the deepest, booming boy voice already!) and is always stamping, dancing and singing which is why this colourful VTech character made a perfect gift for him:

When you first spot the triangle, round and square pegs you might briefly think this is just another ordinary shape sorting toy, but you could not be more wrong… This cool walking, talking and dancing Learn & Dance Dino (RRP $49.95, ages 2-5) offers epic entertainment in more ways than you would think!

Measuring an impressive 30cm tall and 35cm long this large green dinosaur has a ‘shape sorter’ back with three coloured spots where his spikes should be. Each spot sports a different colour, is a different shape and has a different effect, time to add the magic spikes! Once you successfully match the correct spike with the right ‘hole’ your dinosaur will suddenly come alive…

The yellow triangle pegs represent three emotions (happy, sleepy and angry), the red circle pegs trigger three personalities (Dino, Robot and Monster) and the blue square pegs activate three different music styles (marching, hiphop and ballet). In a perfect example of the cause and effect principle your child can handpick each peg and watch dino reward their choices with a fun display of song, dance and sentences.

Dance alongside a sleepy ballet monster, stomp after an angry marching robot or bust some moves with a happy hiphop dinosaur, it’s all possible! Between the nine different pegs kids are able to create 27 unique combinations, what a fantastic sneaky introduction to coding! The dance moves train gross motor skills, the music pegs introduce children to catchy music styles and the three emotions teach children about different feelings eg. ‘Let’s practise calming down, take a deep, deep breath’ ‘When you smile it makes me happy’.

Even young children can press the chunky light-up buttons to hear colours, shapes and phrases or turn the switch to swap between singing or talking, giving them a feeling of independence and control over their new dino friend. Handy accessory: When not in use the coloured pegs can be neatly stored in the big orange dinosaur egg.

You can find VTech’s Learn & Dance Dino at your local Target, Kmart, select online stores and independent toy retailers across Australia.

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

Santa’s Wonderland giveaway

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Nov 212019
 

Our calendar for the remainder of the year is full of important dates, but some things are worthy of a big red circle and our upcoming visit to Santa’s Wonderland is definitely one of them. The kids are still treasuring their memories of last year and we can’t wait to add many more special moments this December. I previously told you why Santa’s Wonderland is the place-to-be for Adelaide families leading up to Christmas (read up here if you missed it) and I promised you a give away so here it is!

It’s clear to see why Santa’s Wonderland takes the crown as Adelaide’s biggest Christmas event and this year it is bigger and better than ever. Grab the kids, invite your family and bring along your friends to enjoy the magic of Christmas like you have never seen it before.

There is just so much to see and do: Wonder through the Traditional Family Christmas Land, explore the sparkling and slippery side of Ice Wonderland, admire the colours of Candy Land and most importantly, enjoy UNLIMITED rides for three whole hours! Expect to be swept away by the bright colours and the Christmas music, the beautiful decorations and the unique photo opportunities and of course keep an eye out for the big man himself…

If you’re a budget conscious parent like myself you’ll appreciate not having to pull your wallet for every ride, it’s all included in your ticket price. This make Santa’s Wonderland a fun and affordable outing for families with no costly surprises along the way, because we know the December month is expensive enough as it is.

Your all-access ticket includes 3 full hours of:
⭐️ Unlimited FREE Carnival Rides
⭐️ Unlimited Bouncy Castles and Ball Pits
⭐️Unlimited Ride-on Reindeer fun
⭐️ Unlimited Ice Skating
⭐️ Unlimited Ice Toboggan Slides
⭐️ Unlimited Ride on Reindeer’s Coral with Rudolf & Friends
⭐️ Unlimited Dodgem Cars
⭐️ Even More Main Stage Entertainment
⭐️ Story Time with Mrs. Christmas
⭐️ Write a Personal Letter to Santa & Mail It
⭐️ FREE Activity Trail Showbag (10 stops)
⭐️ Roaming Christmas Characters to meet, greet and takes selfies with!

Want to know more? Click here for a full list of all that’s included when you visit Santa’s Wonderland (and the few things that aren’t).

Santa’s Wonderland is located at the Adelaide Showground (Wayville, SA) and will be open from December 6 – December 24, 2019. Each ticket allows for 3 full hours of entry during the session-time chosen when booking, that’s a whole lot of Christmas fun! With over 35 sessions to choose from there’s a perfect time slot for everyone. Please note that advance booking is recommended as sessions do sell out, alternatively tickets can be purchased at the gate at door prices. Children under 2 years of age are free.

To find out more about Santa’s Wonderland and to secure your preferred session online visit www.santaswonderland.com.au.

For your chance to win a Santa’s Wonderland Family Pass (RRP $180, admits 4) to a session of your choice hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page, good luck! Sessions subject to availability.

SalonDooz: Makeover Time!

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Nov 182019
 

While most Australian kids are impatiently waiting for Christmas Day to arrive, our six half Dutchies are first counting down the days until Sinterklaas. With only 19 days to go until our special night the house is buzzing with excitement. The kids are making drawings and wish lists, we are baking (and eating) lots of pepernoten and watching Sinterklaas shows on the Dutch satellite. Of course there is also a line of empty shoes waiting for a small gift in the weeks leading up to Sinterklaas evening… it turns out Sinterklaas knows exactly how to reward well behaved little girls!

Whether you want to call them a stocking filler, shoe stuffer or a Christmas sack surprise, the gorgeous SalonDooz are a fantastic budget-friendly December gift for little HairDooz fans. If they loved the luscious locks of the HairDooz collectibles they are sure to be wowed by this brand new range of fragrant fashionistas in their hot pink oversized perfume bottles.

Twelve sweetly scented SalonDooz are waiting in their own mini-salon for a talented stylist to give them a makeover, do you have the magic touch? To get started simply press the spray nozzle to open the salon door and release your new friend  The attractive, brightly coloured packaging is both pretty on the outside and the inside featuring a large mirror and even a tiny catwalk so she can show off her new look once you’re finished.

All SalonDooz have their own signature style featuring colourful hair in eyecatcching dos, fabric clothes, shoes and fashion accessories you can actually take off and put back on. As you SalonDooz collection grow so will your salon wardrobe allowing you to mix, match and create many unique looks, just use your imagination. Underneath the perfume bottle you’ll find a secret compartment with a miniature accessory like a hair straightener, a comb, a brush or another special surprise.

This larger sister of the original HairDooz doll has a moveable head, legs and arms so you can style and pose your lovely client as you play. She can stand up and sit down by herself or you can seat her in her coloured salon chair. You can even use the included suction cup to attach your SalonDooz friends to a mirror or window, making her an ideal car-companion for upcoming holiday trips.

You can find SalonDooz at Kmart, Big W, Target, Toymate, Mr. Toys or Toyworld stores across Australia or online.

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

A is for Apple

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Nov 162019
 

Time can’t go fast enough for our Hattie who will be having her first taste of kindy next week. She enjoys art and craft, she can’t get enough of outside play and dressing up and she loves music and dancing… sadly learning her letters is a different story. Just like with her older siblings we’ve turned to the magic of fridge magnets to help her on the way.

LeapFrog‘s Fridge Phonics range has been adorning fridges across the globe for many years. Since its first release little learners have been practising their ABCs with a Fridge Phonics bus, a house, a sun, a pond and other fun shapes and the concept is still successful as ever so why change it? Today’s curious toddlers and preschoolers can master the alphabet with the help of friendly frog Tad.

Tad’s Fridge Phonics (RRP $29.95, Ages 2+) consists of a bright magnetic red apple console and 26 letters magnets. The clever apple recognises each individual letter, just pop the magnet in the letter slot to hear which letter it is, which sound it makes and learn interesting words that start with that specific letter eg. super stinky skunk, luscious lemon lollypop or groovy green guitar.

There are lots of different ways to enjoy and learn with this cool magnetic letter set. Explore what each letter sounds and looks like, learn new words with each letter, find the first letter of your name, put all the letters in alphabetical order, try to make simple words, sing along to the alphabet song, sort the letters by colour, separate the vowels from the consonants and of course practise your fine motor skills while you play!

This year’s Fridge Phonics set also includes 3 new large magnets that celebrate three special people (Dad, Mum and Me) with a series of fun sentences eg. ‘Dad’s a rockstar’, ‘I can do anything’ or ‘Mum is funny’. You can even add a unique touch by sliding a nice photo of your child and each parent into the corresponding magnet, how cute is that?

We’ve been using our old Fridge Phonics set for many years and I can definitely vouch for the versatility (suitable for different ages/stages) and durability. After countless drops and throws our previous set is still going strong, however several letters have gone on an extended holiday along the way hence the upgrade to a full new set. Tad’s Fridge Phonics is guaranteed to keep our last two preschoolers entertained while mum does the kitchen chores.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

Nov 152019
 

As a busy mum of six I try to be as organised as possible for the Christmas season. I generally get my shopping sorted early and aim to get a good combination of fun, practical and educational gifts that are durable and will be enjoyed by all. With the big Summer holidays rapidly approaching I am always on the look out for presents that will keep the peace on long road trips or boring flights and I think a good old Where’s Wally? book is definitely a winner:

If you’re a Wally fan like my kids you’ve probably got quite the book collection already. Search and find mysteries never get old and the kids are always grabbing one or two when we hop in the car. This year Wally is on a different kind of adventure in Where’s Wally? Double Trouble at the Museum (RRP $24.99).

Come and join Wally and the gang as they travel through the ages on a trip to the museum. From the reading room to the museum gardens, from the entrance hall to the costumes and clothing and much more, there is plenty to see for keen spotters. But it’s not Wally or his friends you need to look out for, the aim of the museum game is to spot more than 500 differences. Kids will love this fresh new take on the classic Where’s Wally concept and it might just save your sanity on your next drive too.

To find out more about Walker Books and to take a closer look at the Where’s Wally? range visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of ‘Where’s Wally? Double Trouble at the Museum’ (RRP $24.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck!

Nov 042019
 

Thanks to the recent closing of Uluru there is a shiny new spotlight on the traditional owners of Australia, their rights to protect their sacred sites and the many ways others can treat Australia’s indigenous people with the respect they deserve. The indigenous community has the most amazing stories to tell and Magabala Books makes them available to all. Today we’re learning about the beauty of Darug Country:

Cooee Mittigar (RRP $24.99), come here friend, welcome to Darug Country (the Sydney area). Darug author Jasmine Seymour invites young readers on a special trip to Darug Country to meet the exciting wildlife, explore the different seasons and discover what they mean to Darug people. Along the way you’ll even get a crash course in Darug language so you can understand the locals even better!

Accompanied by stunning illustrations by the hand of Darug artist Leanne Mulgo Watson Cooee Mittigar is wonderfully warm and inviting, just like the beautiful Darug people. As the traditional owners of the Darug region they know where to find the goannas and the echidnas, they read the stars and watch the rains and they wait for the yams to bloom and the bottlebrush to flower. Each Australian season has it signs, you’ll soon learn to spot them too!

Two lucky Hip Little One readers will soon own their very own piece of true Australian art, as we have two gorgeous Jasmine Seymour prize packs to give away. Each winner will take home a copy of Jasmine’s newest title Cooee Mittigar, a copy of her sweet book Baby Business and a very special bracelet designed by a member of the Darug Custodian Aboriginal Corporation. Made with gum nut and Tuckeroo seeds found on Darug Country together with wooden beads these limited edition bracelets are a real treasure.

To find out more about Magabala Books, to browse the range and to order your favourite Magabala titles online visit www.magabala.com.

For your chance to win 1 of 2 ‘Magabala Books’ prize packs (RRP $49.98, contains a copy of Cooee Mittigar, Baby Business and an exclusive handmade Darug bracelet) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter. Good luck!

Madame Badobedah giveaway

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Oct 312019
 

It’s a tricky transition, from beautiful picture books to big novels. When you’ve finally mastered reading and are starting to enjoy longer stories, you immediately have to give up gorgeous illustrations… or so it seems. I was so excited to discover a wonderful children’s book by Roald Dahl’s granddaughter Sophie Dahl that combines the best of both worlds and it’s definitely worth a read:


With its large A3 size and eye-catching, colourful hardcover it’s easy to think Madame Badobedah (RRP $26.99) is ‘just’ a pretty picture book. But between these lovely blue covers hides a true treasure of a story that is sure to delight readers of all ages.

When your parents own a seaside hotel you can expect to welcome all kinds of interesting guests, but Mabel has never seen anyone as quirky as this before… Initially she is not too sure about the new arrival, whom she has named Madame Badobedah. Madame Badobedah moves into Room 32, together will all her suitcases and parcels, boxes and furniture and even a selection of pets!

As time goes on Mabel discovers that Madame Badobedah is more a friend than a fugitive and a survivor instead of a super villain. She may not be a lost princess or a criminal in hiding (what a relief!) but this special guest sure knows all about exciting adventures and the unlikely pair bond over their love for adventures.

Mermaids in secret cupboards, pirates, ballerinas and precious jewels from far-away destinations… Room 32 is a place every child would love to visit! Lauren O’Hara has created the sweetest illustrations for this dreamy children’s book and with 56 pages there is plenty of reading and spotting and admiring and imagining to do. Walker Books‘ Madame Badobedah is the perfect magical Christmas gift for little bookworms.

To find out more about Walker Books and to take a closer look at Madame Badobedah visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of ‘Madame Badobedah’ (RRP $26.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck!