Tag: mattel south africa

The Ultimate Kids Christmas Gift Guide

The Ultimate Kids Christmas Gift Guide

Its officially “Gift Guide Season” and I have been scouring the best toys across leading suppliers in South Africa to compile my gift guide for the Christmas Period. To make your life a little easier I’ve divided them into Toddlers, Kids and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math).


That’s every cute age where they don’t reaaally understand what the Festive Season is all about, but they do enjoy ripping wrapping paper apart quicker then you can put on a nappy! I speak from experience when I say these are fabulous from ages 1 to about 3, my little niece even has a few of them!

Here are my top picks:

From Top Left to Right:

Mini Mickey Plush Toy from Prima Toys (avaliable at all leading retailers) // Leap Frog Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket R259 // Leap Frog Sweet Treats Learning Cafe // Playdoh Kitchen Creations Spinning Treats Mixer R329 // LeapFrog Popping Colour Mixer Truck R429 // Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Microphone R199.99 // LeapFrog Water & Count Veggie Garden // Playdoh “Wavy the Whale” Set R219


Kids Selection

I haven’t separated these into “Boys or Girls” as I really don’t believe girls should only play with girls toys and boys with boys. Children should be allowed to play with whatever they choose too! There are so many incredible toys out there, and I know I haven’t even included half they things my son asks for on a daily basis, including a “Paw Patrol Helicopter”, however, these are some of my top picks:

From Top Left to Right:

From Mattel we have the Barbie Colour Surprise Doll. Available across all ethnicity’s and body shapes, children can spray and style Barbie’s hair however they please! R489.99 // Prima-Toys Scruff-a-Luv is still one of my favourites. They arrive as a sad, matted ball of fur, but once you bathe them, dry them, brush them and love them, you’ll discover what kind of pet they really are and reveal their true beauty R360 // The Hot Wheels® Track Builder Epic Challenge Race Crate contains everything needed
for creativity, building, imaginative play, and problem solving R789.99 // Super Hero Super Stretch is one of my boys favourite, Stretch him, pull him, tie him in knots. When you release him he uses his amazing stretch to slowly return to his normal shape. R509 // Baby Thando speaks both English and IsiZulu and has proven to be one of the most popular dolls of this year R699 // Fingerlings come in a wide range of different animals including dragons, panda’s and monkeys. See how they react when you swing them, pet them, rock them, startle them or hang them upside down. R399 // Transformers are everywhere this year and Hasbro has released the Power Charge Bumblebee. Action figure converts from robot mode to
classic Volkswagen Beetle mode in 17 steps so kids can amp up the power in 2 modes R949 // LOL Surprise have taken the world by storm. Children unwrap the ball finding a surprise in each layer. Prices vary dependent on the type you buy.



From Top Left to Right:

Thomas & Friends Perfect for early childhood fans, this shiny assortment of durable die-cast Thomas & Friends large engines is suitable for age 3+. RSP: 114.99 // Treasure X, I love the sensory element to this toy! Treasure X is the ultimate surprise-reveal collectible with a multi layered reveal process, cool figures, and the chance to find REAL treasure! // Join the buzz with the Bumblebee Showcase Helmet that captures the cool swagger of the loyal Autobot scout R1400 // Barbie Dream Camper -The signature pink Barbie® DreamCamperTM transforms from a camper van into a campsite play set with the push of a button R1949.99 // The Barbie® Cooking & Baking Ultimate Kitchen is a must-have kitchen play set for little chefs aged 4+, complete with its Barbie® chef doll and 20 accessories R829.99 // The My Little Pony Equestria Girls fashion dolls, each dressed in a stylish outfit, complete with fashion accessories that match their character personalities // Little Live Pets: These little dogs are the cutest pups around. Lil’ Cutie Pups are full of life and love to show off their own personalities as they scamper about, beg and play with you.


This is an absolute passion of mine! Doing STEAM/STEM activities with my boys and broadening their thinking and problem solving skills. My educational gift guide from last year still has some fantastic choices that are still in store, added to my list from this year you’ll have no shortage of ideas.



From Top Left to Right:

VR Real Feel is the ultimate in experience in 3D. We got the racing one for my son for his birthday and the graphics are incredible! It works alongside your mobile phone and can be bought in a variety of options, including fishing and racing. R649.99 // Tower Products has an incredible arts and crafts range for kids, available from most leading toy and craft stores. Prices from R34 // V-Tech Light and Flight Discovery Globe . As they pretend to travel the world, the globe teaches kids basic geography skills with colourful lights, playful phrases and cool sound effects. R725 // GeoSafari Bug watch R349 // Magna Tiles are a firm favourite in our house. The options to create are endless ! Well worth the price! R2489 // Tower Products delivers again with their fantastic range of STEM home kits. Make your own slime, crystals or snow! R68 // I’m seriously crushing over National Geographics range of exploration sets. It varies from Dino Digs to Volcano sets and Shark Tooth Kits from R199 on Takealot // Toby Tower’s Bath Crayons are perfect for Picasso creations in the bath! RSP 60.


Imagination Play, The Magic of Dolls – Win with Shimmer and Shine

Imagination Play, The Magic of Dolls – Win with Shimmer and Shine

If you have been following my blog for a while you probably would have picked up that I’m a bit of a fan of “Imagination Play”. Good old acting, letting the boys immerse themselves and act out experiences they may have had or dreams they want to pursue. I read somewhere that imagination really develops in children between the ages of 2 and 4. To help deal with experiences and make sense of the world around them, they engage in imaginary play.

Its also no secret that my boys love the show “Shimmer and Shine”, and as a parent so do I.  Shimmer and Shine has long been a favourite in our house, it tells a story about the magical adventures of genie sisters “Shimmer and Shine” and their best buddy Leah. “Newly qualified” twin sister genies, Shimmer and Shine, grant Leah 3 wishes to try to help solve her problems. Along the way they go through a number of challenges and often overcome the problem at hand, no thanks to the wishes. I love that it teaches the boys problem solving abilities and positivity. In addition, it teaches kids the value of friendship because Shimmer and Shine shows how friends can rely to each other when times get rough.

We love dolls. I have absolutely no qualms in giving the boys dolls to play with. I bought Yusuf his first “baby doll” when he was 2. He loves babies and playing with dolls helps to develop a sense of empathy and care. The boys were absolutely thrilled when they got sent a “Shimmer” Doll to review. The only conduit being there was one and they had to share. (These school holidays have tested my patience slightly when it comes to the sharing lesson – but thats another blog altogether).

Personally, I feel dolls are one of the best toys to encourage and foster “Imagination play”. Children can act out how they feel and create opportunities for trying out new ideas, ways of thinking and problem solving. The Shimmer doll was perfect and within minutes of unboxing Aadam was transported to “Zahramay falls”. Shimmer is the sister thats always looking to maximize the fun. Her pet monkey Tala is always mischievously by her side and I love that they have incorporated that into Shimmer’s hair comb. The doll comes dressed in a pretty purple satin genie outfit and along with the comb you also get special gem stickers. She’s the perfect size too, fitting into a little ones hand comfortably and being small enough to accompany us on our adventures. My youngest loves to play with hair and had delighted in brushing and playing with Shimmers’ long hair (anything to stop him messing up mine :)).


Our little Shimmer Doll has been the perfect toy to spark curiosity and send them into a world of play. Together with Mattel South Africa, I’ll be giving away one “Shimmer and Shine” Doll which retails at R269.99.

To enter:

  1. Make sure you are subscribed to the blog
  2. Like and Follow “In these Stilettos” on Facebook , https://www.facebook.com/inthesestilettos/ 
  3. Comment below on who your favourite Shimmer and Shine character is!

Its that easy!

  • The winner will be announced on the In these Stilettos Facebook page on Tuesday 24th July. The competition is open to all residents of South Africa. T’s & C’s apply.