Thursday, November 19, 2015

Top Gift Ideas for Christmas

The 2015 Holiday Gift Guide

As a gift blogger I read a lot of lists put out by top retailers, market watchers and trend spotters to see what are being heralded as the top wanted gift ideas for Christmas. This year I decided to share a few of them in a blog post, some of them are already featured on my top gift ideas page on this blog which is a great page to bookmark as I keep it updated regularly so that you know any of the ideas on there are sure to be popular.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Playset

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 24" Leonardo Mutation Play Set
It's hard to believe that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are still as popular now as they were when they first burst onto the scene during the 80s, but Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael and Donatello have found a whole new audience who love their antics.

This playset is a really awesome one as it features a 24" articulated Leonardo action figure, but it's also a complete Sewer Lair Playset - does it get much better than that?

The answer, of course is YES!

The set includes 30 different features such as false floors and a skate park. It also features 9 different rooms -

Turtles' Living Room
Slinter's Meditation Room
Skate Park Half-Pipe
Mikey's Rooom (that's Michelangelo for people who don't know the TMNTs that well!)
Turtles' Dojo
Lookout Tower
Donnie's Workshop (aka Donatello)
Computer Room
Engertainment Room

I just love the fact that Leonardo opens up to reveal all of this, talk about a fun idea. What could have made it better was if it came with action figures that could play inside the lair, but they are available to buy separately so at least that's something.

Here's some pictures of the toy in action (remember that the action figures featured inside do not come with this playset, but you can purchase them separately - right here!

Barbie Dreamhouse

Barbie Dreamhouse
Barbie is another long term favorite of the holiday gift list and parents buying for their kids (heck even some grandparents I suspect) would probably remember wanting a Barbie dollshouse of their own at one time or another.

This Barbie dream house is a vision in pink (of course) and consists of three floors with a total of seven rooms AND a working elevator, an elevator in a Barbie dolls house makes me want to be a little girl again so that I can get one for Christmas myself!

The built-in garage has a door that realistically opens and closes by sliding a tab. The garage fits Barbie's coupe in perfectly as well.

Attached to the garage is a beautiful atrium window -- flip the window down, and it converts into a swimming pool, perfect for a fun pool party for Barbie and all of her friends!

The kitchen has been fitted out with sleek appliances and realistic cookware, even groceries so that Barbie can pop on her chef's hat and whip up some great meals for anyone who drops by.

The dining room features a table set for two so Barbie has a place to eat all those great meals she can make in her kitchen.

In the bathroom there's a sink/vanity and a luxe tub so that Barbie can relax before getting ready for a night out.

On the top floor she has a beautiful bedroom with a dramatic pink canopied bed that is just so what you'd imagine Barbie's bed to look like, it also features a walk-in closet with lots of space and a mirror to make sure she looks fabulous before going out for the day or night.

There's just so much to explore in Barbie's Dream House that you just know they'll be hours upon hours of fun to be had.

Check out some of the pictures below -

Lego Minecraft

Minecraft was a computer game that revolved around breaking and placing blocks, as my daughter showed me (a few years ago when she was caught in the 'Minecraft craze') you could build all kinds of structures. To me it sounded like a virtual Lego so I wasn't at all surprised when Lego Minecraft was introduced.

Now there is more to Minecraft than what I have said above, but what you need to know above all else is that it's captured our children's imagination in much the same way that Lego captured our imagination when we were younger and weren't nose deep in technology. Combining Lego and Minecraft was an ingenious idea and it's helped generations to come together in play and has proven to be very popular.

Here's a few of the Minecraft Lego available (I should mention that I haven't actually played with any of the range as my daughter was 'over' Minecraft when the Lego range was first released.

Top Gift Ideas for Kids This Christmas

Minions, Frozen, Unicorns, Dinosaurs & More Gift Ideas

There are lots of great gift ideas out there this holiday season and here's a few more for you to consider if buying for children -

Another popular gift idea is to get something personalized, all age ranges seem to enjoy getting some specifically for them whether it's personalized with a photo or just there name. One place that has a range of products from photo cubes to Christmas ornaments, clothing to household goods is Zazzle. If you're after a personalized gift idea then I would click this link and go straight to Zazzle for inspiration.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Twilight Barbie Dolls - Barbies With Bite!

Do You Have These Twilight Barbie Dolls Yet?

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 Bella & Edward Giftset
I love some of the great collectible Twilight dolls that are available and there are lots to choose from, but when I think of dolls the first name that springs to mind is Barbie. That's why I decided to dedicate this page to the Twilight Saga Barbie Collection of Dolls as opposed to all of the dolls that have been released to commemorate this popular vampire and werewolf saga.

I was very happy to see in the last release of these dolls Esme, Carlise and Emmett dolls released, but the very first ones featured Bella, Edward, Jacob, Victoria and Alice - let's have a look at them all shall we?

2010 Twilight Barbie dolls

Edward & Bella Barbie Dolls - Twilight's Favorite Couple

The first movie in the Twilight Saga was simply called Twilight and two of the first Twilight Barbies released were from that particular movie. Of course if they were only choosing two what characters could they be other than Edward and Bella.

We were first introduced to Bella Swan when she moved to Forks, Washington to live with her father. At Forks High School she first sets eyes on Edward Cullen and I can still see the look between them when Edward stops a car from crashing into her - the love affair for our generation is about to begin.

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Bella Doll
This doll is a pink label doll and is dressed in Bella's sensible no-nonsense fashion. Let's face it Bella is far from what my daughter would call a 'girly girl'!

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Edward Doll
Not only does this pink label doll have the brown/red spiky hair that Edward made famous in the first movie and the fashions he was wearing, but there is also glitter on his head and chest which I think is a really cool touch.

Jacob Black Doll - A New Moon Inspired Barbie Doll

Jacob Black had a fairly small part in the original movie, but when it was time for the second movie in the series Jacob had grown up and he proceeded to spend an inordinate amount of time topless - something girls around the world (young and old) found great pleasure in!

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Jacob Doll
It should come as no surprise that this Jacob doll should be shirtless and it really makes me think of a line from Eclipse where he tells Edward, "I'm hotter than you" - I know when I was in the movie theater it erupted in laughter at that line!

Alice & Jane Dolls - Twilight Eclipse Barbie Dolls

The last two dolls released in 2010 were based on the third film in the series - Eclipse. Alice Cullen, Bella's best friend and Edward's sister was a welcome addition to the Twilight dolls collection.

The second doll was based on the character of Victoria which meant we now had a villain to add to the collection and I must say she looks beautiful with the cascading red hair and totally looks the part that was brought to life by Bryce Dallas Howard.

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Eclipse Alice Doll
Alice always manages to exude glamour and looks like she could've just stepped off of a magazine cover and this doll manages to capture that beautifully.

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Eclipse Victoria Doll
Alice always manages to exude glamour and looks like she could've just stepped off of a magazine cover and this doll manages to capture that beautifully.

2011 Twilight Saga Barbie Dolls

Jane Doll - A Twilight Eclipse Barbie

Jane is a member of the Volturi which is like Vampire Royalty and we're introduced to her in the Eclipse movie where we find she can inflict pain with her mind.

Barbie Collector Twilight Saga Eclipse Jane Doll
Jane was brought to life by the talented actress Dakota Fanning in the movies.

I like the fact that this doll has red eyes like Jane as I was worried they'd get this detail wrong.

2012 Twilight Saga Barbie Dolls - Barbies with Bite!

Edward and Bella Dolls

Bride & Groom Dolls from the Twilight Wedding!

In the fourth movie of the saga we finally see Edward and Bella get married and so when we heard that two dolls were being released from this movie we just knew that they would be based on the wedding and we were right!

Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga - Bella Doll
Here comes the bride! When these two say until death do us part half of the audience didn't realize quite how long that was expected to be!

The dress on this doll is a replica of Bella's wedding dress in the movie, this doll is even wearing Bella's engagement ring!

Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Edward Doll
Waiting patiently for his bride to walk down the aisle is Edward in his gorgeous wedding tuxedo and looking very suave and sophisticated.

These dolls aren't just for Barbie collectors, but are must haves for any Twilight fan I believe.

Rosalie & Jasper Dolls - Twilight Siblings in Barbie Doll Form

Mattel Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Rosalie Doll
It's hardly a surprise that Rosalie should be debuted as part of the Breaking Dawn Part II release as she really comes into her own when she supports Bella's right to carry a baby to term and you can imagine her being a very protective aunt to Renesmee.

Mattel Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Jasper Doll
Jasper with his piercing amber eyes looks perfect in doll form - don't you think? It's great to have a doll to keep Alice company at last!

2013 Twilight Barbie Dolls

Edward & Bella Dolls - A Twilight Barbie Doll Set

Edward Cullen & Bella Swan - The Twilight Saga Doll Gift Set
Edward & Bella Twilight Barbies - Gift Set

This set of two dolls is a beautiful addition to the Twilight Saga Barbie Collection. Officially Edward wasn't released on his own, although Bella was, I have, however, seen him available on his own through ebay.

Personally I think a set of two is a great way to get these dolls and as the movies are all over it's a lovely momento to have whether you usually collect barbies or not.

Carlisle & Esme Dolls

Ma & Pa Cullen as Barbie Dolls!

I was so happy to see both Carlisle and Esme brought to life as barbie dolls, I'd actually wondered if it was ever going to happen! Carlisle is the head of the Cullens and the adoptive father of Edward, Emmett, Alice, Rosalie & Jasper and husband to Esme - he's also a doctor which makes for easier access to a blood bank although he (and his family) usually feed on animal blood.

Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Carlisle Doll

Carlisle looks great here in his familiar doctor's coat and even though he's in doll form he manages to exude the calmness that Dr Cullen always seems to have.


Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Esme Doll

Esme looks very glamorous here and I have to say that her purple blouse was my favorite piece out of her wardrobe so this is a great costume selection in my opinion!


Emmitt Doll - A Hunky Twilight Barbie Doll!

Barbie Collector The Twilight Saga Emmett Doll

Emmitt is really one of the quiet hunks of Twilight and my one disappointment in the movie saga was that he didn't get a bigger role! This costume captures his size and strength really well and I love how they've even added his Cullen Crest wrist cuff.


I must admit I do constantly change my mind over my favorite, but since the last release when we finally had a Carlisle, Esme and Emmitt that big bear of a Cullen Emmitt has been my favorite doll!