My eyes lit up when I saw this one, it’s a great idea – basically a little street rolled up into one little box! And it’s a pretty little wooden toy, us parents seem to have a thing for wooden toys don’t we? Probably more so than the kids!!
It is basically a wooden box done up like a house with four doors and four working doorbells on each door. Each door bell makes a different sound and you will need to get some batteries to get them going! The feature that really sets this aside is that each little door has it’s own dainty lock and key. They aren’t chunky ones for little fingers and it has taken a little time for my almost 3 year old to get to grips with them. It is fantastic for her coordination though and although she wanted me to do the locks at first she is now learning that with a bit of patience she can do it herself. It is really good for her I think! I like the fact that the keys are more realistic to real keys rather than chunky plastic ones, I’m just worried she will get a bit too good at it and master our front door!! The keys have a subtle number engraved on them which match the numbers on the door and she picked this up straight away and they are attached to the handle of the house so they can’t get lost!!
I would say children under 3 would struggle with the locks but you can leave them open and they will happily play with the dolls, doors and doorbells.
You get four dolls with the house, 2 girls and 2 boys which fit neatly behind the doors. I had thought there might be some decoration behind the doors but it’s just plain wood. This didn’t cause my little girl any disappointment though, she is happy playing house with the dolls. The general story line to her play being they all go round and ring on each others door bells to see if they want to play, they all announce they are too busy sleeping / playing / eating / watching telly, so they all have to go home again… then finally they all decide to go for a sleepover at one of the houses.
I love the imaginative play this little toy encourages, and I love the details in the pictures on the front if the houses. It’s a great toy to take along with you if you are going away, you can lock all the dolls in their houses and then carry it easily by the handle. I took it as a surprise toy for my little girl on our camping trip and it worked a treat. We called it her doll’s holiday home and she sat and played happily with it while we got things ready.
I would love to be able to buy this for friend’s children as a gift as I don’t think it’s a toy people will have seen and it’s such a great idea. It’s a bit over my usual gift budget though from what I can gather so that would be my only area for improvement! Otherwise a fab toy and mummy’s favourite from the toyologist box!
Watch out for it on Toys R Us shelves as it is coming to stores soon!
Ding dong! Hear a doorbell in action:[youtube=http://youtu.be/LNdScGRRAmE]