MiO from Manhattan Toy Co. {Review + Giveaway}

logo-6When I was a little girl, I was always playing with my dollhouse. If you were a kid in the early 90’s, you probably know which one I’m talking about. It was big and bulky and made of plastic with a blue roof. It came with a mom, dad, brother, sister, and of course a baby. It had a swing for the baby that hung from the “dining room” ceiling and a closet under the stairs for who knows what. I loved playing “house” and my daughter is now at the age where her imagination is booming and she’s giving toys silly voices and acts them out and she loves when mommy or daddy joins in. I’ve been wanting to get her a dollhouse so she could have the sweet memories that I have when I loyjx0pumkx4crmw7zfw_f7893450-d09d-4935-8401-a6ca6e84fa86_grandewas little and I was thrilled when we teamed up with Manhattan Toy Co. to review their amazing MiO dollhouse collection.

Manhattan Toy Co.  is an innovative and award-winning toy company started in 1978 and is now located in Minneapolis, MN. They strive to use wood from sustainable forests for all of their (amazing) wood toys. All of their toys are thoroughly tested to the most exacting international standards for safety so you can feel comfortable with your children playing mio3with Manhattan Toys. These toys are unlike any other toys on the market. They’re unique, fun, engaging, and kid and parent approved!

My daughter received several pieces from the MiO collection to test out; MiO Sleeping + 2 People ($30), MiO Eating + 2 People ($30) and MiO School Bus + 2 People ($24). The very first thing that I noticed when opening the boxes was the smell of the wood. I love the smell and I hope that it brings back happy childhood memories for my daughters. The construction is top of the line and very sturdy. I love the brightly colored interior walls of the houses. Included in the sets are little people (or animals) with bean bag bodies and hand painted wooden heads.They’re perfect for little hands, my daughter handles them with ease and the wide bottom allows for them to stand up on their own without help from mom or dad Sleeping and Eating sets include a square base and a triangle second floor that are detached to allow for open ended play. Each set included colorful cubes that can be used as seats, the hold up the kitchen table, end tables, whatever your little one wants to use mio4them for. These sets are absolutely adorable and range in price from $10 for 2 sets of people or animals to $100 for the MiO Playing Eating Sleeping Working + 2 People with many sets in between so there’s something for everyone’s budget.

My daughter loves her MiO play sets. She loves driving the school bus and parking it in the house (it’s the perfect size to be a garage) and she even stacks the base of the houses on top of each other to make a bigger house. I love that she’s using her imagination and thinking outside the box and that she named her little people after her family and friends! MiO has even been awarded the  Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016, the Creative Child Magazine Award – Toy of The Year Award in the Open Ended Playmio Category 2016, and is a National Parenting Product Award Winner 2016. MiO more than deserves those awards, as it’s a toy that allows little ones’ minds to run wild with it’s simple, yet eye catching appeal. I know I will be purchasing more MiO sets for my daughter this holiday season and you can do the same and start shopping MiO hereBurritoBuzz gives MiO 5 out of 5 stars! We adore Manhattan Toy Co., you can check out all of their fantastic products here, you’ll find something for every little one on your list!

As if Manhattan Toy Co. isn’t awesome enough, we’ve teamed up to give not one, but TWO winners a MiO set of their choosing (excluding the $100 set)! Head over to Instagram and follow these simple steps for a chance to win:

  1. Follow both @burritobuzz and @manhattantoy on Instagram – we’ll be checking!
  2. Like the original giveaway post.
  3. In separate comments, tag friends who you think would also like to win!
  4. That’s it!

lvjgkptyhv1uxkyxbikw_ecbd8002-35da-4290-a941-f9bfa7b29175_grandeGiveaway begins Tuesday November 8, 2016 at 12pm EST and ends Friday November 11, 2016 at 12 EST. Winners will be announced shortly after on the original giveaway post. Goodluck! **This giveaway is in no way endorsed or sponsored by Instagram.**

Don’t forget to follow Manhattan Toy Co. on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay up to date on the newest products and sales!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

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Manhattan Toy Storybook Castle {Review + Giveaway}

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BurritoBuzz is gearing up to share some great reviews to help you with your 2016 Christmas shopping. We know, it’s too early for Christmas shopping, it’s not even Halloween! But we want to give you plenty of opportunity to read our reviews and enter our giveaways.

So here’s another really amazing toy: The Manhattan Toy Co. Storybook Castle

This castle is an award-winning toy and after seeing my toddler play with it, I can totally see why. The castle has quickly become one of my son’s favorite toys. We’ve been adding more and more wooden toys to our toy collection for a few reasons: they’re infinitely less obnoxious than the electronic plastic toys that seem to ceaselessly need batteries, they hold up exceptionally well, and they strongly promote fine motor skills.

Four quadrants of castle-themed activities features gliders, gears, bead runs, snapping crocodile and more to support motor development.

  • Ages 12 months+
  • Measures 18L x 20.8H x 18W in
  • Measures 45.3L x 52.7H x 45.3W cm
  • All wood toys have non-toxic water based finishes.
  • Surface wash only
  • This product meets or exceeds EN71 and CPSIA safety regulations
  • The castle runs around $100 and can be purchased here

I remember playing with wooden toys as a child and my dentist’s office had many of them. I actually looked forward to going to the dentist just so I could play with their cool toys. Wimg_2184hen I first started introducing wooden toys to my son, I assumed he would be disinterested because he had so many loud, engaging electronic toys. But I was so wrong. He plays with his wooden toys quite a bit more and they keep him busy. The intricate movements of the various moving parts really make him think.

This castle has four quadrants and each quadrant has moving parts. There are sliders, parts that twist, caricatures that spin or move forward, backward, and side to side. Each piece moves in a different way, meaning that toddlers have to spend some time figuring out the motions. All of my pieces worked quite fluidly, with the exception of the princess and knight that move along the main baseboard. For some reason those pieces were tight and didn’t move well. My son especially loved the sliding door and flag, as well as the crocodile attached to the main board.

Putting the castle together was a little more difficult than most, but it only took me around 30 minutes from start to finish. I struggled with the screws and just gave in to the power drill. The pieces all fit together perfectly, but because of the setup of the quadrants and the top screws, I found it awkward to fully get the top screws in.

Overall, this product is really thought out. My son has been engaged for hours upon hours playing with this castle. It’s the ideal height for him to sit, kneel, or even stand to play. It is sturdy, and is increasingly helping him with his fine motor skills.

Want to win the Storybook Castle?

Here’s your chance! Head over to our Instagram page here and follow these easy steps:

  1. Like both @BurritoBuzz and @ManhattanToy, we will be triple checking!
  2. Like our giveaway photo!
  3. Tag as many friends as you want! But only one tag per comment please.
  4. That’s it!

Giveaway will begin on October 24, 2016 and ends on October 31, 2016 at 8:00 PM EST. A winner will be announced shortly after. **This giveaway is not sponsored or endorsed by Instagram**

Good luck!

– Katie

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

PlaSmart Wonky Wheels {Review}

More than a toy car!

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We try to focus on non-electronic play frequently because C will literally sit and do the shape sorter game on his iPad all day if I let him. So anything that moves, makes noise, helps his motor skills, hand eye coordination or just stimulates his little toddler brain, is okay by me!

I received the Wonky Wheels from PlaSmart and it took C less than 30 seconds to figure it out! I told him to put his finger in the indention on top and then drive it around! He laughed and giggled the entire time while the car twisted and turned all over the kitchen floor. He was thrilled that it drove in circles and whichever way he pushed, it did something completely different. He got quite upset when it wouldn’t follow the roads on his car mat, but we quickly explained to him that it’s not supposed to!

The construction is very solid and well put together. He carries it with him almost everywhere and we have had no issues with it being dropped and breaking or paint chipping or peeling off.wonky wheels.png

It runs about $9.99, which seems like an ideal price point. Overall, Wonky Wheels are fabulous little toys. They would make a good addition to any little boy or girl’s birthday or holiday wish list!

Buy yours here: Finger Car Wonky Wheels, Red with White Stripe

– Kirstyn

 **Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

PlaSmart Smart Mat {Review}

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My 16 month old son loves his cars. Maybe almost as much as I loved playing cars with my younger brother when I was little. My brother and I had a cool car mat with streets and shops that we would play on for hours at a time. Though, it was located in his room instead of mine, which I still call bullshit on. As an adult, I hate real cars and how much they take from my bank account, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still love a good few hours of playing Hot Wheels with my son. I was thrilled that PlaSmart was sending BurritoBuzz some products, because I was really anxious to get one of their Smart Mats!

We set the Happyville Smart Mat up in our playroom and while my son doesn’t quite get the idea of the roads yet, he truly loves driving his cars on it. The mat is pretty large at 80 x 57 x 0.2 inches, which is way larger than the carpet one that I had when I was young.

It is lightweight, at only 2lbs and the base is made from EVA foam. IMG_2888

The graphics are phenomenal, and the ease of cleaning this mat makes it a great purchase (which I found out after my asshole cat decided to barf on it). The pattern does repeat three times, but most children won’t care or even notice.

This does take a few days to flatten out fully and it also needs to air out. The smell of paint/ink/chemicals when first opening this was extreme and made me a little wary but did go away within a day or two.

While I love the material and texture of the mat, it does damage very easily. My son has put several gouges into the mat already and if you have any pets with claws, you’re doomed and a carpet mat would probably be better for you. Still, toys endure wear and most things look like they’ve been abused after a toddler has played with them.

Traintown.pngThere is also another variation, the Traintown Smart Mat, that BurritoBuzz mom, Casey, received. She also agreed that it needed to air out for a day or two and the graphics are pretty awesome. Her little one likes to play with trains, so her little collection of trains were perfect to play with on her new mat. The graphics are printed three times on the train mat as well, but little Stella doesn’t mind. In fact she liked that mommy and daddy could both have the same “pink house” as she did.

Even with those few cons, I still think this mat is a great addition to our playroom. My son plays on this daily. The Happyville mat will run you around $25 and the Traintown mat is about $30, a pretty modest price for a car and train mat like this!

You can buy yours here:
Plasmart Happyville Smart Mat

Plasmart Traintown Smart Mat

JollyB Tree Building Blocks {Review}

I love finding new and unique educational toys for my three year old preschooler. Toys that keep her engaged and that gets her excited are winners in my book. Anything to keep her away from the TV and iPad, am I right? So when we connected with JollyB Toys on IMG_0573Instagram, I fell in love with their beautiful wooden educational toys. JollyB was kind enough to send one of their toys, Tree Building Blocks, for us to try. When it came, my daughter could not wait to get it open and start building.

It’s a really neat concept that helps with hand-eye coordination and fine motor skill development geared towards toddlers two years old and up. I just love wooden toys. They have an heirloom factor to me (so I can save them and pass it down to my children’s children). The set comes with a brown wooden base and a trunk, which is what you build from. It comes with 18 wooden branches, 40 beautifully colored leaves and 10 red grains that kids can build their tree with. Kids can play around with the branches and leaves to build various tree pattern and learn their colors when sorting the leaves. They also learn IMG_0572how about balance; if you put too many leaves and branches on one side, the tree can tip over. Their imagination can really run wild as there is no right or wrong way to build their trees. The possibilities are endless!

Pros:

  • Engaging and educational
  • Endless play, as there are unlimited ways to build
  • Multiple children can play at one time
  • Learn balance and grows interest of how to build things
  • Leaves can be sorted by color, another learning aspect
  • Fun for parents and children alike
  • Doubles as a cute decoration when not being played with

Cons:

  • Some holes in the branches don’t fit the leaves and grains
  • Leaves are heavy compared to the lightweight branches
  • Several leaves were stuck together (I was able to them pull apart but the paint is now messed up)

I give this toy a 4 out of 5 stars, only because some of the holes don’t fit the leaves and grains. But overall, it’s super cute and fun. My toddler really enjoys it and has been asking to play with it multiple times a day. If you’re looking for a unique, educational and engaging toy for your toddler, consider the Tree Building blocks toy for JollyB. It was also make a great birthday or Christmas present (it’s coming fast!) for the little builder in your jollb.pnglife! J0llyB makes so many fantastic wooden educational toys, be sure to check them all out on their website here!

Follow JollyB on Instagram, too, @JollyBforKids and on Facebook at Jolly B Toddler.

– Casey

Sassy Wonder Wheel Activity Center {Product Review}

sassy%20wonder%20wheel1.jpgIf I had a quarter for every time someone asked “How do you do it?” I would be swimming in money! Two under two is NOT for the faint of heart- that is for sure! It is accomplished with a lot of patience, love, coffee, a lot of planning ahead, and purposeful play.

This little wonder is AHHHMAAAZZIINNGGG!

A friend got it for us for BK#1’s baby shower, and it has been in constant use since!

Pros: This toy keeps a baby’s attention for a large amount of time! I stick it on high chairs, walkers, the floor, and restaurant tables. The base attaches to pretty much anything that is flat and clean! It twists around the base, the wheel itself spins, and the little pieces inside with beads spin and rotate also. There are beads inside the wheel itself, so it makes an entertaining noise for them.231149822

Very Durable!

We have had it for almost two years now, and it still looks new even though it has taken a beating! The wheel has been tossed from tables, thrown across the room, beaten on a drum, and I could go on and on with a list of things BK#1 uses toys for. The pieces are not loose, and it has not cracked anywhere!

It’s even been through the dishwasher a few times! ***Nowhere does Sassy say that this is okay, but I felt it needed sanitized more than I could with some Clorox wipes. ***

Wonder%20Wheel%201.jpgThe wheel is advertised for 6 months plus, but BK#1 is approaching two next month and still adores it, and still distracts her when we are out to dinner!

I found it cheapest on Amazon for $7.23. It regularly is around $9 everywhere else.

 

Cons: The ONLY complaint that I have, is that it’s a little big. So, you have to have a larger bag to be able to tote it around. I have a pretty large diaper bag, and it’s not an issue. Not everyone does though.

 

I was really surprised that our babies would love such a simple toy, but it has become the item that goes everywhere with us, and we probably should purchase a second in case of emergencies.

Absolutely a 5 star and a MUST for any parent!

~Amanda