- Mother's Day Brunch
- Carrot Soup with Cucumber Pistachio Relish
- How to Bowl Properly!
- How to Throw an Alice in Wonderland Party!
- 5 Fun Fall Activities
- I will dance for 12 hours, if you will not use paper towels for 1 week!
- Lemon Quinoa Salad
- The Benefits of Garlic!
- What is a Heart Healthy Diet?
- Important Moving Tips to Make Home Relocation Successful
Hot Holiday Gifts - The 2006 All Stars
Every year Toy Wishes Magazine reviews toys and selects their Holiday All Stars. Here are the selections for this years brightest, most innovative toys in over twenty different categories.
Action & Adventure
STAR WARS FORCE ACTION LIGHTSABER
(Hasbro/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $24.99)
Every Jedi Knight needs a lightsaber! Complete with sounds and lights, now the lightsaber has a spring-activated deployment, so it's even more authentic.
BEN 10 8-INCH TRANSFORMING FIGURES
(Bandai/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $12.99)
It's double the fun with these three deluxe Ben 10 figures. Each toy transforms, so Heatblast becomes a working flashlight, Grey Matter turns into a pair of binoculars and Ripjaws becomes a real water gun!
POWER RANGERS SOLAR STREAK MEGAZORD
(Bandai/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
Evil doesn't stand a chance against the awesome might of the Solar Streak Megazord. Standing 11 inches tall, this transforming Megazord is made of six separate trains, each with its own lights and sounds. Plus, it comes with a collectible poster!
TRANSFORMERS CYBERTRON PRIMUS
(Hasbro/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99)
This huge Transformer is actually the Transformers' home planet, and a 14-inch tall robot to boot. This awesome toy comes with a Cyber Planet Key that unlocks lights, sounds and firing missiles.
CRAYOLA COLOR WONDER SPRAYER
(Binney & Smith/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $24.99)
Now kids can have all the creative excitement of air-brush painting without any mess, thanks to this Crayola kit. The spray paint only shows up on the special Color Wonder paper, included.
DORA THE EXPLORER SCRAPBUCKET KIT
(Toy Play/Ages 4-8 years/Approx. Retail Price: $12.99)
Dora's new job is to explore a child's favorite moments. This kit includes everything needed to make a great scrapbook, all stored in a fun Dora-themed bucket.
EASY-BAKE CLASSIC OVEN
(Hasbro/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $24.99)
For more than 40 years, the Easy-Bake Oven has been a toy favorite. Now it has been updated the light bulb has been replaced with a more realistic cooking unit that provides even heat and better baking. (And the mixes taste better than ever, too!) The color-change heat sensor tells chefs when their treats are cool enough to take out.
(Spin Master/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $4.99-$19.99)
This sand is definitely out of this world! Although it looks just like regular sand, it can be shaped like dough, and it never dries out. This kit includes four molds, a shovel and a travel case.
Construction & Building
LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT
(LEGO/Ages 10 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $249.99)
The imagination's the limit with this completely new robotics toolset. Building on the huge success of the original Mindstorms, with more than 1 million avid builders, the much-anticipated new set features the NXT intelligent bricka 32-bit processor with an 8-bit memory, FLASH, Bluetooth and a new six-wire system with a real sound speaker, four input ports and three output ports, all for ultimate creativity.
ADVENTURES AT BIKINI BOTTOM
(LEGO/Ages 7 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
Join SpongeBob in wacky adventures with this Bikini Bottom set. SpongeBob's pineapple home features a spring-loaded bed, basketball, a jellyfish launcher, Patrick's rock, TV and more.
CAT CONSTRUCTION SITE & TRUCK ASSORTMENT
(MEGA Brands/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: Crane $29.99, Trucks $6.99 each)
It's classic preschool play as kids bring the CAT brand to life in a great line. The power crane hauls blocks and parts and lets kids build a three-level structure, complete with arches and girders, plus figures and much more. Separately, choose from three awesome construction vehiclesDump Truck, Front Loader and Excavator. Put it all together and there's lots of open-ended play and imagination for kids.
(MEGA Brands /Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: Wonder Coaster $39.99, Deluxe Set $29.99, Starter Set $19.99, Magnimals $5.99)
There's no limit to what kids can create with these large, easily handled magnetic wonders. From the Starter Kit to Wonder Coaster to a zoo full of Magnimals, all pieces mix and match for creative discovery.
Dolls & Accessories
(Playmates/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $99.99)
Allysen is a totally interactive pre-teen doll who can become a girls' best friend. She recognizes and responds to key words with lifelike facial expressions and real emotions. She can remember important information like birthdays, favorite colors, hobbies, interests and can be a truly interactive friend. Allysen comes with cool items like a hairbrush, magazine, cell phone and separate accessory packs on themes like slumber parties, cheerleading and dance.
BARBIE IN THE 12 DANCING PRINCESSES: BARBIE AS PRINCESS GENEVIEVE DOLL
(Mattel/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $24.99)
Barbie's most recent starring role is as Princess Genevieve, the seventh of 12 sisters in this new Barbie DVD movie. This doll features a light-up spinning skirt and even her kitten is included
BRATZ FOREVER DIAMONDZ DOLLS
(MGA Entertainment/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $29.99)
The Bratz girls shine brighter than ever! These dolls from MGA come with a unique gift for little girlsreal diamond jewelry! Each diamond comes with a certificate of authenticity.
POLLY WORLD ROCKIN' THEME PARK
(Mattel/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
This playset is much more than a bunch of cool rides for Polly Pocket and her pals to enjoy. It's got a rooftop stage to rock out on, a restaurant and plenty of stores. Includes one doll.
Educational & Learning
LITTLE LEAPS GROW-WITH-ME LEARNING SYSTEM
(LeapFrog/Ages 9-36 months/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
Parents help infants and toddlers learn with this electronic educational system that features exciting, immersive software and grow-with-me versatility. Each touch of the big-button controller provides new experiences that teach everything from numbers to animals. When the child is ready, simply flip over the top of the console for joystick and button play.
THE SMARTGLOBE 2.0
(Oregon Scientific/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $129.99)
This globe is unlike any before itkids just have to touch a location on the map to learn about it. It also features trivia and games to help teach capitals, languages, history, current events and much more; plus, it's bilingual!
V.FLASH HOME EDUTAINMENT SYSTEM
(V.Tech/Ages 6-10 years/Approx. Retail Price: $99.99, additional discs $29.99 each)
This video game console combines the high-action excitement of video games with creative, educational content. The system's V Discs include three different playing modes in which kids can navigate educational video games and access a virtual encyclopedia.
V.SMILE BABY INFANT DEVELOPMENT SYSTEM
(V.Tech /Ages 9-36 months/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
This interactive system offers fun, engaging activities that grow with the littlest learners as they become toddlers. The system features a colorful activity panel that connects to the TV and can be taken on the road for on-the-go fun.
ARCADE FLOOR PINBALL
(Zizzle/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $299.99-$399.99)
Bring the stylized look of a real pinball machine home with exciting gameplay and action that feels like an arcade machine! Two players can compete for high score playing on a wood cabinet that houses a colorful bold playfield design that includes arcade pinball features such as: pop bumpers, spinners, solenoid-controlled flippers, multilevel ramps, LED lighting, roll through lanes, wire-ball guides, backlit LCD scoring, slingshot kickers, targets, tilt and more. Choose from Marvel or Pirates of the Caribbean.
(Hasbro/ 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: 39.99)
This little fishie likes to swim, swim, swimbut only if there's music playing! When kids plug their music players into the I-Fish, their finny friend swims, wiggles and lights up to the beat of the music.
(MGA Entertainment/Ages 6-15 years/Approx. Retail Price: $29.99)
Miuchiz, the latest in virtual companions, feature touch-screen responses, motion sensors and "train and feed them" play. Pick from three themesBratz, for fashion play and fun; Pawz, for adventures in gaming; and Monsterz, for battles and brawling! Then connect to the Miuchiz Website for interactive, safe fun.
Games & Puzzles
SCENE IT? NICKELODEON
(Screen Life/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
SpongeBob SquarePants, Avatar, Cosmo and Wanda, Jimmy Neutron and all your favorites come packed on one DVD. Race friends around the board by answering trivia questions and on-screen challenges.
MONOPOLY HERE & NOW EDITION
(Hasbro/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $29.99)
The best and brightest spots in America are represented in the newest Monopoly game. Americans voted which cities and landmarks made the cut!
SOUNDS OF THE SEASHORE
(Cranium/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $16.95)
This fun matching game helps youngsters learn sounds by listening to the special shell. It makes a variety of sounds, from animals to vehicles, and kids have to find the matching card.
BUTTERSCOTCH MY FURREAL FRIENDS PONY
(Hasbro/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $299.99)
Many girls dream of owning a pony, and their dreams can come true with this realistic, life-size pony. Butterscotch is aware of her environment, responds to affection and attention, and kids can even get on her for a pretend ride.
BARBIE LOVE 'N' CARE SURPRISE PETS PLAYSET
(Kid Designs/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
Barbie loves her pets! And little girls will love playing with the cute critters in this interactive electronic playset. Nurture the egg until it hatches and you discover what kind of cute critter you've gotten. Then play with it in the magical park that has a working slide, elevator and sound effects that respond to each of the different characters. It's magical, imaginary fun!
BIGGEST LITTLEST PET SHOP PLAYSET
(Hasbro/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
This mammoth playset is a Little Pet paradise. It has a walking wheel, a three-level spinning tower, a food treat center and even a nap hammock. Includes two exclusive pets, too.
BABY GYMTASTICS BOUNCE & SPIN ZEBRA
(Fisher-Price/Ages 12-36 months/Approx. Retail Price: $44.99)
Just like you remember from the playground, this wacky zebra lets babies ride it and make it bounce and spin. Even better, they can sit and play with the handle bars and enjoy the cute zebra's lights and fun music.
LIGHTS & MELODIES DISCOVER CENTER
(Baby Einstein/Ages 0-24 months/Approx. Retail Price: $34.99)
This caterpillar is ready to help babies inch towards discovery. It has modes for laying babies down, teething babies and more. Lights, melodies and hanging toys entertain babies.
PEEK 'N PLAY DISCOVERY DOME
(Hasbro/Ages 3 months & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99)
Infants will love this play zone. It has more than 15 different activities to encourage development with its peek-a-boo curtain, shape-sorting mailbox and more.
SIDE BY SIDE KITCHEN
(Little Tikes/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99)
This efficient kitchen playset from Little Tikes is loaded with accessories. It has a granite counter, faucet, oven, fridge, coffee pot and even a towel for cleaning up.
(Spin Master/Ages 3-8 years/Approx. Retail Price: $24.99)
Any girl can train to be a cheerleader with this interactive DVD. It comes with the instructional video, a step-to-step cheer mat, pom-poms and even a baton.
DISNEY'S ARIEL MAGICAL TALKING SALON
(JAKKS Pacific/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99)
Girls can practically become a mermaid themselves with this neat roleplaying set. When girls talk to the light-up mirror, Ariel appears in it via voice recognition software. It also comes with a drawer for accessories.
(Fisher-Price/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99)
Explore Dora's enchanting castle with this playset. Just wave the wand to open the castle doors, and explore super-secret nooks and crannies throughout the castle.
KEYHEADS FIRESTATION & SPEED SHOP
(Little Tikes/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $19.99)
This race-themed playset has several characters that activate different features, like fire trucks, other vehicles and more. Plus, there are plenty of cool car accessories.
KID-TOUGH DIGITAL CAMERA
(Fisher-Price/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99)
This sturdy camera makes it safe and easy for little ones to take digital pics. The camera features dual handle grips, two-eye viewing and auto flash, so even the littlest photographers can take great pictures.
(Dynatech/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $44.99)
Storytime Theater has taken bedtime reading to the next level. The entertainment system projects images on the wall or ceiling, which change as pages are turned. There's even an automatic setting which shuts off when the story's over.
FLY WHEELS XPV
(JAKKS Pacific/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $59.99)
XPV stands for Extreme Performance Vehicle, and it's easy to see why with this cool ground-to-air R/C. Easy-to-use controls let you take off from any flat surface, and once launched, XPV can fly more than 20 stories high at almost 20 miles per hour.
AIR HOGS HELIX R/C HELICOPTER
(Spin Master/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99)
This miniature remote control from Spin Master fits in the palm of kids' hands. The two rotors means the 'copter can hover, spin and fly anywhere, and there's no assembly required.
TYCO R/C N.S.E.C.T.ASSORTMENT
(Mattel/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $99.99)
This bug-like R/C stands for New Science of Experimental Combat Technology, and kids will love the feeling of power and control as they send this creature snaking around the house, capturing objects in its power claws and even firing missiles from a six-shot cannon!
JEEP MINIMOTO DUNE BUGGY
(Toy Quest/Ages 12 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $699.99)
Kids can take an off-road adventure in their own neighborhood with this vehicle from Toy Quest. Traveling at speeds up to 18 mph, the dune buggy features dual disc brakes, hand-mounted controls and a complete suspension system.
POWER WHEELS JEEP HURRICANE
(Fisher-Price/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $399.99)
This pint-sized vehicle packs Jeep-sized fun! The all-terrain vehicle can take on dirt, gravel and ruts easily. An interactive dashboard features a built-in navigation system.
PRINCESS COZY COUPE
(Little Tikes/Ages 18 months-5 years/Approx. Retail Price: $59.99)
All would-be princesses will need this coupe to get to the ball in style. Complete with a cute princess theme, it also features a hip cellphone with sounds.
RAZOR JR. SCUTTLEBUG
(Razor/Ages 19 months & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
This tiny rideable is perfect for toddlers on the move. The folding bike needs no pedals to move, and its seat and wheels are designed for maximum safety.
OZONE INFLATABLE FURNITURE
(Funhouse/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $34.99)
These inflatable chairs are perfect for chilling out and listening to music. Each lounge chair has two built-in speakers, and universal jacks enable listeners to plug in an mp3 or CD player.
ELMO GIGGLE & SHAKE CHAIR
(Spin Master/Ages 18 months & up/Approx. Retail Price: $34.99)
Elmo is ready for kids to sit a spell on this cute and comfortable seat. When kids sit on Elmo, he giggles and shakes for relaxing fun.
UPPER DECK WALL STARS
(Upper Deck/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $19.99)
Sports fans can bring their room to life with these cool adhesive Wall Stars. The 13-by-37-inch sheets can be repositioned, reused and are easy to apply. Pick from Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Tony Hawk.
THOMAS & FRIENDS: HOLIDAY TREE TUNNEL
(RC2/Learning Curve/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $19.99)
Get kids into the holiday spirit with this tree tunnel. The limited-edition item features a tunnel with festive art and an exclusive Thomas donning a Santa hat.
LIONEL EXPRESS G-GAUGE CHRISTMAS TRAIN
(Lionel/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $279.99)
This classic, around-the-Christmas-tree train can add some zip to the holidays. The set has a holiday-themed engine, plays seasonal music and runs on a 52-inch circle of snow-covered track.
CITY ADVENT CALENDAR
(LEGO/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $19.99)
Count down to Christmas with this fun calendar. Every day, kids find a surprise behind a new door that will help them build a mini-model on the big day.
ATARI POCKET SIZE PLUG 'N PLAY
(Basic Fun/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $19.99)
Take retro gaming on the go with this portable Atari joystick on a unit that plugs directly into the TV. It includes classic games like Pong, Breakout, Missile Command, Centipede, Asteroids and more.
CRAYOLA TWISTABLES MARKERS
(Binney & Smith/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $3.99)
Thanks to these ingenious new markers, kids will never lose a cap again! The ink tips slip in and out with a mere twist. A great new spin for kids' favorite markers. The set includes six classic colors.
(Basic Fun/All Ages/Approx. Retail Price: $4.99)
Add some style to all kinds of iPods with these cool protective cases. They fit snugly over regular iPods, iPod minis and iPod nanos. Pick skins with pictures from Hello Kitty, Family Guy, Pirates of the Caribbean and more.
HAPPY FEET TAP DANCING MUMBLE
(Thinkway Toys/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $34.99)
Watch Mumble dance and speak! This toy dances with flapping wings and tapping feet to any music. Activate his Talk Back mode and listen as he responds when spoken to.
LUCKY THE INCREDIBLE WONDER PUP
(Zizzle/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $50.00)
This labradoodle plush will have no trouble barking its way into a kid's heart. He understands voice commands from any voice with no special programming, does 15 tricks and can even speak.
(Fisher-Price/Ages 18 months & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
The latest incarnation of Tickle Me Elmo, the furry, red phenomenon that has entertained children for 10 years, is now T.M.X. Celebrate the 10-year anniversary of Tickle Me Elmo with this plush, which is sure to put the littlest ones in tickle mode.
(Radica/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $59.99)
Now girls can try out new looks again and again with this cool new gadget. Just plug the console into a TV, take a picture of your face with the digital camera and then make a whole new you as you choose from a variety of hairstyles, makeup and accessories.
BLUE MAN GROUP PERCUSSION TUBES
(ToyQuest/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99)
These percussion tubes are based on the hit off-Broadway show. Now kids can make totally creative, Blue Man-worthy sounds at home. The tubes, xylophone and drums work together to create unique beats, and proximity sensor technology registers kids' moves.
PIXEL CHIX LOVE TO SHOP MALL ASSORTMENT
(Mattel/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $34.99)
It's time to go shopping, wherever little girls are! These malls are the latest thing in the super-hot Pixel Chix line. They're pocket-sized and perfect for portable shopping. Each mall comes with two shops: a boutique and food court or a salon and pet shop. The flip screen lets the Chix move from shop to shop, and seven input buttons allow creative interaction like shopping, earning money and much more!
THOMAS & FRIENDS STORM ON SODOR SET
(RC2/Learning Curve/Ages 3 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $179.99)
Children will love experiencing authentic storm soundsinspired by the popular "Calling All Engines" story from Thomas & Friendswith this 25-piece train set. Listen as the trains pass tumbling trees, a breakaway shed, a windmill and more.
CARS PISTON CUP 500 TRACK SET
(Mattel/Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $44.99)
Kids can recreate the ultimate race from Cars with this cool track. Using the power booster and lane-changers, Lightning McQueen and his rivals race over 12 feet of track.
HOT WHEELS RADAR GUN
(Mattel/Ages 7 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $29.99)
Wow! How fast is that thing going anyway? Kids can find out for real with this working radar gun. The point-and-read technology measures the speed of vehicles from bikes to cars to Hot Wheels. Choose from scale speed for small vehicles or actual speed for bikes, cars or the neighbor's cat.
LIONEL NASCAR TRAIN LINE
(Lionel/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $299.99)
Now even trains have caught NASCAR fever! This train is designed like official NASCAR cars, and comes with a GP9 locomotive, a single dome tank car and even a champion's trophy-carrying boxcar!
Video Games & CD-ROMS
WII GAME SYSTEM
(Nintendo/Rated E/Approx. Retail Price: $200.00-250.00)
This system promises to break boundaries with its inviting, inclusive design when it launches this holiday season. Wii's interactive remote control puts you into the game, as your arm and hand motions with the freehand controller will suddenly swing a sword or a tennis racket on the screen. It's not just about pushing buttons anymore!
NINTENDO DS LITE
(Nintendo/Rated E/Approx. Retail Price: $129.99)
Need some power in the palm of your hands? The DS Lite offers ultra-bright dual screens, special touch-screen technology, wireless WI-FI connection and family-fun games that might make you give up the TV altogether.
PLAYSTATION 3 GAME SYSTEM
(Sony/Rated E/Approx. Retail Price: $499.99-$500.00)
Debuting this holiday season, this next-generation platform system will be a larger leap than even the original to PlayStation 2. The most powerful of the new consoles, the PlayStation 3 is scheduled to release 15-20 titles at launch time, and packs a special Blu-Ray DVD player for high-definition fun.
Video Games: Plug & Play
(Hasbro/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
Kids can design their own fashion line with this TV game. Budding fashionistas enter their designs into fashion shows and build up their own designer label!
(Mattel/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: game system $69.99, game packs $19.99, booster card packs $9.99)
This brand-new "console game meets card game" revolutionizes the way kids will play video games and collect cards. Players scan their cards over the HyperScan unit and their favorite characters magically come to life on the TV screen! Each game will feature approximately 100 game cards on such top properties as Marvel's X-Men, Cartoon Network's Ben 10 and Mattel's Interstellar Wrestling League
PLAY TV GOLDEN TEE GOLF
(Radica/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $29.99)
Play the popular Golden Tee Golf arcade game at home! This game from Radica features the same unique trackball interface and realistic game play as the real thing. Just plug the unit into a TV or VCR and play!
(JAKKS Pacific/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99)
This innovative gadget takes interactive pet ownership to the next level. You can train and nurture your pet on your handheld then plug the handset into the TV console to play games, interact and much more. You can share pets and tricks with your friends, too, for a completely immersive virtual pet experience. Deluxe set comes with the handheld and the TV console.
World of Sports
SPEED STACKS STACKPACK
(Play Along/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99)
It's one of the hottest activities going at home or school. Now, kids can practice their sport-stacking skills at home with this cool kit. Players race against each other, stacking and unstacking cups at lightning-fast speeds. The pack includes 12 sport stacking cups, a carrying bag, a StackMat, timer and instructional DVDs.
ESPN FAST ACTION FOOTBALL
(Fisher-Price/Ages 6 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $199.99)
This game combines a high-tech electronic game with adrenaline-pumping physical fun. The indoor game features a digital display, a footpad and a joystick. The game offers more than 20 ways to play and three modes of game play.
NERF SHOWTIME HOOPS
(Hasbro/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $249.99)
This indoor gaming system is the ultimate hip-hop basketball experience. It has an adjustable hoop, features announcing by AND 1 Mix Tape Tour emcee Duke Tango and much more.
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