Get Creative! - Holiday Gift Guide 2013

We are doing a few different gift guides this year, but my favorite guide is the "Get Creative!" Guide.  I love toys that encourage open-ended play, and the ones on this list definitely represent hours of hassle-free, imaginative fun!  (And nothing on the list is out of the average budget!)

BENDASTIX Botz ($9.99)

My boys LOVE robots, and they also love to craft.  The BENDASTIX Botz kit combines the two, with reusable "bendy" sticks that can be decorated with the included decorations to make little robots with personality.  The kit itself contains enough stuff to make dozens of variations on the basic robot, challenging kids to use their brains to come up with new ways to play each time.

Pom Tree Stuck on Fun Small Sticker Tubs ($6.99)

I remember collecting and playing with stickers for most of my childhood, and my boys have really gotten to enjoy stickers as part of their "crafting" time.  The Stuck on Fun Sticker Tubs from Pom Tree are some of the most ingenious stickers on the market today.  This particular tub, "Market Food", contains four rolls of regular paper stickers, as well as an assortment of both felted and foam stickers.  The foods represent a variety of sizes and types of foods that kids would find at a market, making it fun to create landscapes kids can decorate with their favorite eats!  Over 400 stickers are included!

Manhattan Toy "Imagine I Can" Pirate Kit

Pirates are a popular theme at the Knerl home.  My two middle boys are always dressing up in their homemade pirate costumes and pretending that they are Pirates of the Carribbean.  This child-friendly kit from Manhattan Toy features a safe-to-use wooden sword, pirate hat, bag of sturdy wooden "gold" coins, real working compass, treasure map, and belt -- all ready to store in a pretty slick-looking metal lunchbox container.  I can see this getting hours of play -- just be sure that you help kids learn to store the pieces for years of lasting fun.

HABA Water Friends Angler Set ($19.00)

Bath toys rule, as long as they prevent mold and are easy for little ones to use.  These fishies and pole from HABA fit the bill!  The swimmers are soft, squishy cloth that allow them to float without holding in too much water, and they squeeze out dry when kids are done.  The pole features a hook that can pick up the critters by their "loop".  Kids of any bathtime age will get a kick out these!

*Samples of products received to review.  Opinions are our own.