Monday, December 16, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part Six: Toys for Babies

This year, we've created handy gift guides with toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in store or browse our website for more gift ideas. 

Part 6: Toys for Babies

We have high standards for our baby toys. Quality and safety are of the highest importance. Any toy you give a baby is going to be constantly chewed on, dropped, and even thrown. But a toy should also stimulate a baby's senses through sight, sound, or texture (our favorites are great at all three). And, a toy should be easy to hold and to chew on.

Babies are changing month to month, though. As their abilities and interests develop, the toys they'll be interested in will, too.

0-6 months: For the first few months, toys are hardly needed as babies are just beginning to learn how to control their hand and focus their sight. Once they're able to grasp, however, a soft and easy to hold toy like Sophie the Giraffe, an Apple Park organic cloth toy, or a Kathe Kruse Towel Doll makes a perfect first toy.

At six months, babies love to lie on their back and play with toys hanging above them. A lambskin is perfect for this age of back play, as is a Skip Hop Activity Gym or a Haba Wooden Play Gym. Also consider choosing a teething toy at this age, such as our Kleynimals Stainless Steel Keys or our large selection of natural wood or silicone teethers.

Around nine or ten months, babies can sit up and play with toys in their laps. Larger grasping toy like the natural Skwish or the Haba Little Leaf House are perfect for this age.

At one years old, babies are just learning to crawl and walk. Toys that develop their hand/eye coordination are great at this age. Plan Toy's Punch and Drop, for example, is a longtime favorite. One year olds love how the balls play peek-a-boo. Our Uncle Goose Blocks, which are handmade in Michigan and available in many languages, are another excellent choice to teach stacking skills and colors. Later on, they're a great toy for teaching reading.

See more gift ideas on our website, or just stop into our store!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part Five: Toys for 4-6 Year Olds

This year, we've created handy gift guides with toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in store or browse our website for more gift ideas. 

Part 5: Toys for 4-6 Year Olds

At this age, kids are bombarded with media sales pitches at almost every turn. A high percentage of toys for 4-6 year olds that you'll find in big box stores feature licensed characters with their own video games and TV shows. Kids need to know that their imagination matters! Help them to unplug and create their own ideas.

Art kits like our wonderful selections from Faber-Castell are a great place to start. Sarah's Silk play cloths can be used for hundreds of purposes from a super hero cape to a homemade parachute toy. And our Dress-Up Mice or Bears sets make great travel toys that irresistibly promote storytelling. Likewise, our handmade Treehouse by The Original Tree Swing is a beautiful platform for open-ended play.

Big kids also need toys that'll help get the wiggles out on a cold or rainy afternoon. Our Yoga Garden Game is a perfect answer--players have to hold a Yoga pose until their turn comes again. It's also a great birthday party game.

Another longtime rainy day favorite is our Ping Pong Carapult. This will likely be our last holiday season with this toy because our toymaker in Oregon has retired. So, pick one up while they last!

Finally, games are great for this age, especially tactile games like Haba's Animal Upon Animal, Janod's Stacking Tower, our our hilarious Flying Pixies game. All three will make you and your kid laugh!

Whatever you choose, we recommend letting Batman and Barbie fend for themselves this Holiday Season. Let kids tell their own stories!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part Four: Toys for Two Year Olds

This year, we've created handy gift guides with our best toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in the store or browse our website for more gift ideas.

Part Four in this Series: Toys for 2 Year Olds

It's really fun to watch a two year old play with a toy. All of a sudden, it's like their imagination takes over and a whole new world of exploring opens up.

Be careful when choosing gifts for a two year old, though. Try not to choose toys designed for older kids. Let them explore simpler toys so that they'll still have plenty to grow into.
Two year olds like tactile toys that help them explore their new power of imagination, in particular toys that help them pretend to do adult tasks that they see their parents doing. Kitchen play sets from Green Toys Cutable Fruits and Veggies sets from Plan Toys are perfect examples. Our Wooden Shopping Cart Toy from Hape, and the Haba Play Tent are two other toys that will ignite a two year old's imagination

Two year olds also really like to create art! We love our BEKA Ultimate Easel for this age because it's low enough for a two year old and has the option to add leg extenders as your child grows.

Along with the easel, try some finger paints! We can't imagine a better set than than our Edible Finger Paints by Wee Can Too, which are made from food ingredients and fruit and vegetable dyes.

Finally, two year olds love to make noise! A sturdy drum, shaker, or xylophone is a perfect gift. (And not just for other people's children!)

Check our our complete list of Two Year Old Gifts on our website. Or, better yet, stop in to the store!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part Three: Toys For Little Kids Ages 3+,16.html
This year, we've created handy gift guides with our best toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in the store or browse our website for more gift ideas.

Part Three in this series: Toys for Little Kids Ages 3+

Three to five year olds have a wonderful array of toys available to them. At three, kids can now be trusted with small parts. But they've also developed a wonderful imagination and a strong sense of their own potential. Suddenly, it seems like they can't grow up fast enough.

Encourage their imagination with toys like the Hape Cash Register so they can play store. Or Holztiger wooden animals, so they can build a story-filled zoo. Hobby Horses and puppets encourage dramatic play. Dollhouses and Brio wooden train sets are also perfect gifts--we recommend each for both boys and girls.

Toys like the Kazam Balance Bike, which will put them on an early track to bike riding, will boost their confidence in their big kid abilities. Likewise, toys like the Hape Tool Bench, preschool games from eeboo or Peaceable Kingdom, and floor puzzles will teach valuable life skills through play.

This is truly a fun age to be a kid. Try a few different types of toys and see which ones they like best.

Check our our complete list of Little Kid gift ideas on our website. Or, better yet, stop in to the store!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part Two: Toys for Big Kids 6 and Up,17.html

This year, we've created handy gift guides with our best toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in the store or browse our website for more gift ideas.

Part One in this series: Toys for Big Kids Ages 6+

Older kids these days have a lot of distractions. Many spend a lot of time interacting with various electronic devices, which is fine as far as it goes. But almost every kid still thirsts to create real world objects that require imagination. An engaging toy can be a powerful antidote to a plugged-in world.

The YOXO Construction Toy, Haba Marble Runs (aka Kuglebahns), Djeco Paper Craft Kits, Potholder Loom kits, and KEVA Planks are all excellent building and creating toys for this age. Each is an invitation to fire up imagination and create something new that didn't exist before (in the case of the potholder loom, kids can actually create something useful and appreciated!).  Each of these toys will challenge an older child's manual dexterity in different ways.

Older kids also like physically challenging toys that create a thrill when mastered. Sweets Kendamas, for example, is a portable ball and cup toy from Japan that offers almost infinite levels of challenges.

For an outdoor physical challenge, we recommend our Slacklines and Ziplines. Our kids have spent hours playing with both. We love them because they offer low-risk opportunities to be physically daring. All you need is two sturdy trees in a back yard.

Older kids appreciate a toy that speaks to their own special interests, whether that's a 98 piece anatomy puzzle, a build your own trebuchet kit, binoculars for outdoor exploring, an all-natural facepaint kit, or an aeronautics science kit.

If all else fails, try a wooden sword. Always a hit in our house!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide Part One: Toddler Toys,128.html

This year, we've created handy gift guides with our best toy suggestions for different age groups at various price points. Ask for one in the store or browse our website for more gift ideas.

Part One in this series: Toddler Toys

From the age of 12 months up until 2 or 2 1/2 years old, toddlers are learning how to move their bodies through the world. Crawling, walking, pushing, pulling, jumping, balancing and running are all skills that toddler are learning. Toddlers also need to exercise their boundless energy, and a good toy can help a lot.

Some of our favorite gross motor toddler toys include the Rody Riding Horse (we recommend this with supervised play at this age), Papa Don's Rainbow Push Toy, The Hape Scoot Around, Wheely Bugs, and the Plan Toys Pull Along Snail, all of which will delight an active toddler.

Toddlers are also learning to hone their fine motor skills while developing their imaginations. Ball run toys like the Switchback Racetrack, pounding toys like Plan Toy's Punch and Drop, and building toys like Haba Fantasy Blocks are all great for developing hand eye coordination while also encouraging imaginative play.

Also, be on the lookout for toys that will grow with your toddler. Folkmanis Puppets, for example, are a lot of fun for younger kids when grownups use the puppets, but will also be used by older kids to create their own stories. Likewise, Green Toys vehicles are great for a toddler to push around, but will also make a perfect sand box toy for a 5 year old. And BEKA Maple Unit Blocks are perfect for making towers with toddlers and awesome for making bridges and castles with 4 year olds.

Check our our complete list of Toddler gift ideas on our website. Or, better yet, stop in to the store!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Wrap Anything @ Our Extreme Gift Wrap Event December 7, Benefiting the Childbirth Collective

On Saturday, December 7, our neighborhood of St. Anthony Park will bring out its Holiday finest! Shops and restaurants up and down Como and Raymond Avenues will be offering a wide variety of holiday cheer!

For our part, our professional gift wrappers (Millie and Dan, mostly) will wrap any present purchased anywhere for a $2 donation to the Childbirth Collective, a fabulous local support group for new and expecting women and families. Bring what you've got and see how quick we can wrap it! (After 14 years of offering free in-store gift wrapping, we're pretty darn quick!)

12/4 UPDATE: We'll be matching all gift wrapping donations up to $300! Now that's twice as sweet!

 So, whether you're gifting tools, chocolates, or books, get them wrapped all at once and help out a great cause! (Note: Really big stuff may cost more.) And, of course, there will be free hot cider!

But wait, there's more! 

December 7 in Saint Anthony Park

Visit our neighbors for reindeer-pulled sleigh rides and Santa photo-ops at Sunrise Banks, cookie decorating at Tim and Tom’s Speedy Market, a wine tasting at the Little Wine Shoppe, and an artisan market at Milton Square. Bungalow Pottery will host candle-dipping for children with Gibbs Museum and Micawber’s Books will donate a portion of the day’s sales to St. Anthony Park Elementary School. Muffuletta will be serving mulled wine on the deck, Complexions on Carter will have skincare specials and sell jewelry and stationery from local artists, and Lady Elegant’s Tea Room will offer discounts in the shop. If you spend $5 or more at Finnish Bistro you get a free chocolate chip cookie.

And if you need a festive cap to the day’s festivities, Santa will be on hand at 5:15 p.m. Saturday to light the tree in Milton Square. Visit the Park Bugle for the full schedule of the day's events.

Here's a few great Holiday gift ideas:

Rock N Ride Wooden Rocking Horse by Hape
YOXO To Go 3D Construction Toy Kit
Lela Lassig Natural Rubber Squeaky Teething Toy
Rainbow Rolling Wheel Rattle by Grimm's
My First Ball Track Set by Haba - Wooden Ball Run
 Hape Pound and Tap Bench

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Small Business Saturday @ Peapods and our Saint Anthony Park Neighbors

For Small Business Saturday, most of our Black Friday specials are still available, including:

  • BUY 1 GET 1 FREE Nuchi Wooden Train Sets & Accessories (compatible with Brio, Thomas, Plan, etc.) 
  • 40% off select bumGenius Flip Hook & Loop One-Size Diaper Covers
  • 35% off select Planetwise Diaper Wetbags
  • 40% off select Kathe Kruse soft baby toys
  • 50% off  JuJuBe Mighty Be Totes
  • $40 off our remaining stock of ERGO Baby Carriers
  • 50% Off Urban Baby Bonnets
  • BUY ONE GET 2 FREE World Music for Little Ears Lullaby CDs by Ellipsis Arts
  • 50% off BabyBlamtasic "BootyBlam" All-Natural Diaper Cream Sticks
  • 50% off select Swaddle Designs Swaddling Blankets & Burpies 
Plus, it's a great day to visit all the other wonderful indie shops and restaraunts in our little neighborhood, including The Bibelot Shops, Micawber's Books, Colossal Cafe, Muffaletta's, Tim and Tom's Speedy Market The Little Wine Shoppe, and The Finnish Bistro. Lots of reasons to shop small today!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Peapods Toys Highlighted in the 2013 Mothering Magazine Natural Toy Guide

Minnesota Toymakers Featured as Top Picks!

Thanks so much to Mothering Magazine for featuring Peapods Toys in their 2013 Natural Toy Guide and for naming our YOXO Original YOXOBot and our Wooden Fox Teether as "Top Picks"! We're particularly pleased because both toys are made in Minnesota.
YOXOBot Construction Toy

Here's what Mothering had to say about the YOXOBot

“This is by far one of the coolest toys to hit the market in a long while...Designed to get kids building in seconds, just pair the smartly designed YOXO links and cores with everyday household items and your kids will be recycling old cereal boxes and toilet paper tubes into spaceships and fairy houses in no time. Recycled and recyclable content, soy-based inks and water-based coating make this toy a truly eco-friendly option at an outstanding price."

Our Wooden Fox Teether
 Mothering also praised our hardwood Fox Teether, which is made in Minneapolis by Oak Tree Arts. We loved this toy the moment we first touched it, so we agree wholeheartedly:
"You won't find another baby teether quite like this one! With a one of a kind cherry wood fox for chewing on and a soft, crinkly tail to pull, your little one will be delighted."
 We first started reading Mothering almost 18 years ago when Abby was a baby, so we really appreciate all that they have done to promote attachment parenting through the years.

Also in this year's guide are our Camden Rose Wooden Octagon Sorter and our Edible Finger Paints.

In addition to the toys we asked them to review, Mothering also highlighted several toys from The Original Tree Swing, another wonderful Minnesota toymaker which we are proud to feature. Their craft kits and their Wooden Waldorf Tree House also won "Top Picks" awards.

"What a fantastic idea--a tree house for dolls! A rope ladder, wooden basket, tree swing and lots of stairs make this doll house totally unique and perfect for play with standard dollhouse dolls, fairies, gnomes and so much more."

Monday, November 25, 2013

Announcing Our 2013 Black Friday Sale: Let's Make Black Friday Less Blechy!

Peapods Black Friday Sale

Big Box retails would like you to spend Thanksgiving and Black Friday fighting crowds and shuffling through freezing cold parking lots. Once again, we say phooey to that! Celebrate Thanksgiving with your family, sleep in on Friday, and then shop your locally-owned indie stores in style. At Peapods, we say let's make Black Friday fun! We're local, fierce and independent. Hear us roar! 

Our Black Friday celebration is bigger and better than ever! No need to get up early—just stop by our store during normal hours for a cup of hot cider. And, with a purchase over $30, you can draw an instant-win prize from our Black Friday fishbowl. You’ll draw one of the following fabulous prizes:
  • $5 Peapods Gift Card
  • $20 Peapods Gift Card (at least 4 available in the fish bowl!)
  • $50 Peapods Gift Card (one of these in the bowl)
  • $200 Session Certificate to Apricot Soiree Photography
  • A Wooden Radio Flyer Town & Country Wagon ($150 value)
  • A Tokidoki JuJuBe HoboBe Bag ($110 value)
  • A Haba Wooden Ball Run ($140 value)
  • A Green Toys Rocket Ship
  • A Hape Pound & Tap Bench
  • Sets of Organic Baby Legwarmers
  • Sets of Wee Urban Onesie & Bib Gift Sets
  • Grimm's Spiel und Holz Magnetic Mosaic Toy

Plus, we'll have a bunch of great stuff on sale!

  • BUY 1 GET 1 FREE Nuchi Wooden Train Sets & Accessories (compatible with Brio, Thomas, Plan, etc.) 
  • 40% off select bumGenius Flip Hook & Loop One-Size Diaper Covers
  • 50% off Planetwise Swim Diapers
  • 35% off select Planetwise Diaper Wetbags
  • 40% off select Kathe Kruse soft baby toys
  • 40% off select Haba baby & toddler toys
  • 40% off our remaining stock of Mother-Ease fitted diapers
  • 50% off  JuJuBe Mighty Be Totes
  • $40 off our remaining stock of ERGO Baby Carriers
  • 50% Off Urban Baby Bonnets
  • BUY ONE GET 2 FREE World Music for Little Ears Lullaby CDs by Ellipsis Arts
  • 50% off BabyBlamtasic "BootyBlam" All-Natural Diaper Cream Sticks
  • 50% off select Swaddle Designs Swaddling Blankets & Burpies 
  • BUY 1 GET 1 FREE Crocodile Creek Stainless Steel Water Bottles
  • Rockin' Green Detergent's brand new SECRET HOLIDAY SCENT in Classic Rock will be $12.99 (Normally $17.95)
But wait, there's more!
Peapods Holiday Rewards
Our Holiday Rewards Program is back. In fact, now it ever goes away!  All year long, our rewards program is now for everything in the store, not just cloth diapers. Earn a $20 store credit when you spend $300 on anything in the store (except for sale items and gently used cloth diapers). Existing Rewards points from cloth diaper purchases or last year's Holiday Rewards count, too!

PLUS: Help families in need this Holiday season! Once again, we are collecting donations of gently used cloth diapers for BabyLove MN's diaper drive. Drop off diapers anytime through 12/22. Clean out your closet and make a difference!

Finally--We wish you and your family a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!

Here's a few of our favorite new items for this Holiday Season:
Green Toys Rocket Ship with Capsule Made in USA
Wooden Waldorf Tree House by Original Tree Swing
Milestone Baby Photo Cards
Wood From the Hood Growth Charts
Made in Minneapolis
Now shipping Nationwide
Xylo Roller from Janod
Rail & Road Loading Wooden Train Set by Brio
 Wooden Shopping Cart Toy by Hape Natural Toys / Pretend Play
Wooden Toy Swords by HolzspielereiMade in Europe

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Share What You Love About Saint Paul at the Peapods Minnesota Toy Fair

Why do you love St. Paul? Visit the Minnesota Toy Fair @ Peapods on 11/16 and let the world know!
In addition to the fabulous local toymakers we'll have on hand this Saturday at our Minnesota Toy Fair, we'll also be hosting the St. Paul Almanac and their wonderful chalkboard..

The Saint Paul Almanac will be here with chalkboard and camera, ready to hear stories from all ages.The photos will become part of a growing community portrait of Saint Paul storytellers. The album "365 Ways to Say I Love Saint Paul" can be found on the Saint Paul Almanac's Facebook page.

So stop by and tell the world why you love St. Paul!  The Minnesota Toy Fair is 12pm-4pm on November 16th.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Peapods Holiday Rewards Now Applies to Everything All Year Long!

Peapods Holiday RewardsOur Holiday Rewards program now goes all year long! Whether you're buying for the Hoildays or for a birthday next summer, you'll earn $20 store credit for every $300 you spend on anything in the store! There's no need to carry a card--we'll keep track of everything for you. Visit our website for all the details.

Also, you do know that we have free gift wrapping, right? We'll wrap any in-store purchase. It's quick and lovely, too!

Also, Here's some of our toys made by Minnesota toymakers, which we're be featuring at our Minnesota Toy Fair on November 16:
YOXOBOT Construction Toy
Wooden Fox Teether
Doodletown Wooden Cars
Turn Turn Turn CD Dan Zanes & Elizabeth Mitchell
Wood From the Hood Growth Chart
The Original Tree Swing
My First Keys Rattle Teething Toy by Green Toys
Wooden Mustache on a Stick
BEKA Ultimate Easel

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Celebrate Local Toymakers -- Join us for our 1st Minnesota Toy Fair!

Help us celebrate Minnesota toymakers!

Minnesota Toy Fair @ Peapods
We're not quite the North Pole, but Minnesota is home to a growing community of unique toymakers and toy designers. These earth-friendly toymakers all focus on classic open-ended toys that inspire creativity without batteries.

Saturday, November 16 
12pm - 4pm

For the first time, we'll be hosting all of these local toymakers for a local toy fair.

Folks from Wood from the Hood, Doodletown, BEKA, Original Tree Swing, Mindware, and Play From Scratch will all be on hand to talk about how their toys are made and share their philosophies about the importance of toys and play. The Minnesota Toy Fair is an invitation to a hyper-local holiday season!

Each toymaker will be offering door prizes. And, we'll be offering double Peapods Rewards points for each local toy purchased all day long.

So, kick off the Holiday Season in style with unique toys from local toymakers!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

When Toymakers Retire

It's no secret that we've always loved handmade toys. They have a kind of integrity that mass-produced toys lack. The personality and values of the toymaker shows through.

Part of that integrity is what happens when a toymaker retires. They don't sell out to a bigger toy company with a marketing plan to move production overseas and start selling to Walmart. No, when a toymaker retires, they just stop making toys.

Recently, two of our favorite toymakers have retired and we'd like to take a moment to say thanks for so many years of great toys.

Mike Spikes, owner of the American Toy Company in Oregon, has been making Ping Pong Catapults and Marble Shooter Toys for us since 1999.  We've always loved his toys for their simple design, durability, and incredible play value--all powered by rubber bands. Luckily, we were able to buy his remaining stock, but they'll soon be gone.

Soon to be gone: The Ping Pong Catapult by The American Toy Company
Also retiring are the toymakers at Mossy Creek Woodworks, makers of one of our all-time favorite baby rattles, which we've also carried since 1999.  Its crazy to think about how many hundreds of babies were welcomed into this world with a gift of a Mossy Creek rattle--all from a business in rural Arkansas that never had a website, Mossy Creek was old school, harvesting wood from their land and drying it in a solar kiln. We've got lots of other wonderful wooden rattles to choose from, but we're sadly all sold out of one-of-a-kind Mossy Creek Rattles.

All gone: Mossy Creek Woodworks
Thank you to American Toy Company and Mossy Creek Woodworks for so many years of wonderful toys. We've been proud to stock them in our store.

Do you have a child who's enjoyed these either of these toys? We'd love to hear your stories!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Announcing Our Newborn Cloth Diaper Rental Program

Cloth Diaper Right From the Start! Newborns deserve cloth diapers that fit well! But newborns grow so fast, buying well-fitting quality diapers can be expensive, especially when your baby will grow our of them within a few months. We're here to help cloth diapering right from the start with our newborn cloth diaper rental program.

Our Newborn Rental Program cost $12.50/week for a premium package of well-fitting cloth diapers.

For $150 plus a refundable deposit of $150, we will provide you with a full stash of 24 brand new, adorable newborn size cloth diapers.  Use and wash the diapers for 12 weeks after your baby's birth. Then, return all the diapers in good condition and get your $150 deposit back. Or better yet, use your deposit toward the next size up diapers and we’ll give you $175 store credit.

How it Works
Diaper rental plans must be pre-ordered at least 4 weeks before your due date. We'll have them ready by 1 week before your baby's due. Then, take your diapers home, wash them, and wait for your baby!

You will have 12 weeks of rental from the day your baby is born. Then, simply drop your clean diapers at the store.  We will process your package and contact you within 48 hours to refund your deposit or arrange for store credit.

The package

We'll set you up right with all the diapers you'll need for 48 hours of day and night use:
Contents of package will be subject to change. Choose a package of boy, girl, or gender-neutral colors and we'll pick out a selection of designs and colors.


Can I return my diapers early? The $150 rental fee is for any period up to 12 weeks.  You can return them any time after use, but we won't be able to issue a refund for unused rental time.

Will I get my full deposit back? We expect the diapers to be returned in very good used condition.  They should be  clean, dry, and hair and odor free.  Some light staining is ok.  If diapers are not sufficiently clean and we need to wash them their will be a $20 cleaning fee.  Diapers should not have any diaper cream residue.  Your deposit will not be refunded for any missing diapers.

What if I want to keep my diapers longer than 12 weeks? Some babies are tiny and newborn diapers still fit well at 12 weeks. No problem. You can continue to rent your newborn diapers as long as you need for an additional $14/week. Just email and let us know you’ll be keeping the diapers a little longer.
What if I want to keep some or all of the diapers? Again, no problem.  If you want to keep all the diapers, we will just keep your deposit and everything is even.  If you just want to keep some diapers we will adjust your deposit refund accordingly.  We can figure this out when your return your stash. Or email us and let us know what you would like to keep and we will let you know how that will affect your deposit.

What if I return the diapers late? We allot a three day leeway period on diaper returns.  After three days we will charge you the $14/week rental fee.  If you have not returned the diapers by 10 weeks after your rental period ends (22 weeks after your baby is born)  we will assume you want to keep the diapers.  At this point you will no longer be able to return the diaper for any portion of your deposit.

How do I care for my diapers? When you first pick up your new diapers, give everything a wash on warm water with an approved detergent. Do one extra rinse, then dry everything in the dryer on warm.  Your microfiber diapers are fully “prepped” at this point.  Your cotton diapers are totally OK to use at this point, but they will not reach their full absorbency till they’ve been washed a few more times. Store your soiled diapers in a DRY diaper pail—do not soak diapers.  Wash every two days, three at the most.  Breastfed poop is fine to go right in the diaper pail, if you have a formula fed baby you should use flushable liners or rinse diapers.   Dump the whole pail into the washer.  Run a complete wash with detergent on warm water.  Run a second complete wash with detergent on hot (120 degrees), add an extra rinse or two at the end until you no longer see stacking bubbles.  Hang dry or dry on warm.

Do not use chlorine bleach on diapers.  Do not use fabric softer or any detergent containing fabric softener, such as Ivory Snow or Dreft.

What about diaper cream? Use only a cloth diaper safe diaper cream—we can recommend several brands.  If you use a cream containing zinc oxide you must use flushable liners.

Any other restrictions? This program is available only to non-smoking households.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Ellie's Favorite Toy of the Moment: The Boba Doll Carrier

Since she got it last week, Ellie's been wearing her Boba mini doll carrier everywhere. You never can tell which toy will connect with a child, but it's a true joy when one does. 
We also stock a similar doll carrier by Beco

Friday, October 4, 2013

Our October Special Returns! Free Canvas Shopping Bag with $50 Purchase

Free Reusable Canvas Bag @ Peapods
Begins today! Our canvas shopping bag is made by Plan Toys. And, like their toys, it's super sturdy. Perfect for the farmer's market, the library, groceries, or, of course, toys!

Our canvas bag giveaway is an October tradition. We've got a bunch all set to go, but they won't last long!

Offer continues while supplies last. Valid for in-store sales only. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Introducing YOXO: A Super Fun & Environmentally Friendly Construction Toy Made in St. Paul, Minnesota

Duncan says: This toy is awesome!
We are proud to introduce YOXO, (“yock-so”) a brand new toy that combines everything we look for in a toy! Made from recycled cardboard, YOXO is environmentally friendly. Made right here in St. Paul, YOXO is hyper-local. And, most important, YOXO is fun!

YOXO is a construction toy with huge play value. It's Y, X, and O pieces are made from dense and durable laser-cut hardboard that sturdily connect together far better than similar construction toys we've tried. And, although YOXO kits suggest designs to create, their aim is truly open-ended. They're even designed to connect to paper towel tubes and other household items that kids are encouraged to reclaim and add to their creations.

We gave the YOXOBot kit to our 8 year old son Duncan and, after an hour of play, he gave it his most glowing review ever: "That's a really cool toy!" The YOXOBot he built was super sturdy and Duncan made a sword to go with it.

YOXO kits come in two versions: The YOXOBot and the smaller YOXO To Go, which comes in a resealable bag in makes a great travel toy, too. And, both are priced just right, too! YOXO is a great idea for a birthday present.

Made by Play from Scratch, YOXO's goal is to encourage creativity and promote sustainability. We couldn't agree more!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Introducing Green Tones Sustainable Wooden Musical Toys by Hohner

We're always on the lookout for musical instruments that are durable and safe enough for toddlers. Young children love rhythm and music, but they also like to experiment and play with instruments in novel ways, like sending a guitar down the stairs.  So, toddlers need sturdy musical toys designed just for them.

We've had varying success filling this niche over the years, but we've recently seen several of our favorite wooden musical toys redesigned in plastic (sad panda...).

So, we're very excited to introduce Green Tones musical toys, a brand new line from Hohner Music. Made in India from sustainably-harvested rubberwood or mangowood with non-toxic glue and water-based VOC-free paint. Green Tones toys are eco-friendly, cute, durable, and fun. And, they're fully tested to the US CPSIA safety standards. Except for the stirring xylophone toy, they're all safe for under 3 years old, too. Try them out and make a joyful noise!

Green Tones 
Mama Bear Drum

Green Tones 
Baby Bear Shaker

Green Tones 
Barrel Shaker

Green Tones 
Handle Cage Bell

Green Tones 
Stirring Xylophone

Green Tones 
Side to Side Shaker

Green Tones 
Triangle Castanet

Green Tones Wooden
Egg Shaker Musical Toy