One of the great hassles of parenting is shoe shopping. It’s a nightmare, and we have to do it seems every other month at the rate these kids are growing. It’s a constant battle of sizes not being in stock, the little ones wanting the cheap ones with cartoons on them, and finding shoes that fit the season. When we went looking for some quality made yet affordable shoes for our toddler we hit all of the stops around town and stuck out. Another day was wasted and her toes were still crammed into the ends of her dirty sneakers that stopped fitting weeks ago. That is when we pulled up Pediped online after doing some research on the best shoes for kids. Mercy, this site had everything we wanted in shoe shopping. A vast selection, handy sizing guides, and shoes for every season, style and age. Not to mention we could do it all online which saved us another afternoon in box store hell. So whether it is back to school shopping, or just the need for new summer kicks for the kids check out Pediped. As they say, they are the next best thing to bare feet!
It’s hard to build a clever little alliteration around the word frisbee but darn it we try. What isn’t hard is actually playing frisbee with your kids. It’s a time-honored backyard, park field, hot beach tradition, throwing the old disc around. Coop Sports has a great line of frisbees this summer that will provide your next family outing with some old fashioned fun. “Wheather backhand, forehand or hammer throw, Coop Discs make throwing and catching a breeze!” We have been having daily disc tosses in the parking lot after work with the Chill Wave 110 G disc that is perfect for all ages and skill levels. We also love the Reactorz Disc for late night summer fun with the kids. This disc lights up as it’s thrown to provide parents with a handy tool to get the last bit of energy out of their kids before bed. Talk about a dad hack right? The best part of Coop Sports disc’s is that they start at the family-friendly price of $4.99.
Stick-lets tagline is “Because Mother Nature Misses Us” and we say let’s fix that this summer! It’s time to take the backyard back and bring fort building into the modern age. Stick-lets is a unique new product that we found at Toy Fair and fell in love with. The number of uses for Stick-lets is up to your imagination. Want a cabin made out of sticks? How about a tower for your green beans to grow up? Or maybe you want a cool garden sculpture? Stick-lets will hold your child imagination all day as they frolic in nature building forts, and swords, traps for monsters and homes for fairies. Let’s make this summer amazing and reintroduce our kids to Mother Nature’s best toy, the stick.
No doubt you remember that one birthday back in the late 80’s when you got your very first super soaker right? Millenial dad’s childhoods can be broken down into before super soaker and after. After was so, so, so much better. Summer was lit. Your backyard turned into a home base, the neighborhood was a battlefield, allegiances were made and broken, no prisoners were taken and everyone had a blast. Pun intended. Don’t your kids deserve a souped up squirt gun too? Yeah, they do. We love this Super Storm Squirt Gun that we picked up for our kids. The range this blaster has is unlike anything you have seen before. 38 feet of range is more than enough to hit the kids across the street as you and your family battle for dominance on the ave.
These toys are a toddler and a parents dream. Cheap, easy to buy and loads of imaginative fun for everyone. Who doesn’t love flying their helicopter around the kitchen or loading up sand with the dump truck out back? The best thing about these plastic toys is that they are all American made. So while you stuff those Easter baskets this week you can feel good about keeping jobs here at home. You should really check out American Plastic Toys for some really great deals on awesome spring and summer toys for your whole family.
Spring Value Set – Perfect for that new sandbox you intend to build in the backyard right? ($11)
7 Piece Sand Digging Set – Load up the sand and move it with this awesome set. ($14)
We’ve never seen a coloring book that leaves so much up to the imagination. The Teddy Bear Book from Rock & Pebble is 30 blank pages just waiting for 15 magical teddy bears to come to life from your little one’s imagination. How cool is this hand stitched coloring book? It’s like a Moleskin for a toddler except for way more fun.
Well, maybe the kid needs a bit more but what is not to love about this oversized whale blanket. The blanket is oversized, not the whale. The whales are small and cute and a perfect compliment to your cooing tummy timer. Also, since the blanket is oversized it will grow with your child and/or come in hand for a dad nap on the couch. Trust us, these blankets are super comfortable for everyone. Invest in this heirloom quality blanket and love it for a long long time.
We were gifted this book while on a trip to Maine last summer and instantly fell in love with it, and we totally believe that you and your family will too. The Circus Ship is a delightful new children’s book that captures the readers and the listener’s attention from page one. Your kids will love the vivid illustrations and the enthralling storyline and you will love reading this tale “one more time please”! Click buy below.
When a circus ship runs aground off the coast of Maine, the poor animals are left on their own to swim the chilly waters. Staggering onto a nearby island, they soon win over the wary townspeople with their kind, courageous ways. So well do the critters blend in that when the greedy circus owner returns to claim them, villagers of all species conspire to outsmart the bloated blowhard. With buoyant rhymes and brilliantly caricatured illustrations evoking the early nineteenth century, Chris Van Dusen presents a hugely entertaining tale about the bonds of community — and a rare hidden-pictures spread for eagle-eyed readers of all ages. via Amazon.com
“STEM Club is a monthly program that delivers handpicked, high-quality Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math toys to your door at a great price. Each month you will receive a different, age-appropriate STEM toy that will encourage your child to learn through play. From robotics to natural sciences, there’s always a new discovery on the way.” Different packages available for 3-4 year olds, 5-7 year olds and 8-13 year olds.
…is perfect for checking out objects in space or even object that take up space this holiday season, like say looking for a jolly old elf. But seriously, this simple to set up and simple to use telescope makes objects grow 10x so the surface of the Moon will be ripe for exploration by your little Neil deGrasse Tyson. We have a deep love for Educational Insights here at Relevant Dad HQ, any tool/toy that can get the STEM juices flowing in our little ones is a winner in our book. The GeoSafari line has some amazing sets that will rocket your kids minds into a learning adventure.
Guy. Guys, you won’t believe what I saw today. I was at the Playwright for happy hour and you know they have those free wings that I like, and well, of course, I had had a couple pints and had to use the men’s room. So I walk down this hallway and I notice this tiny little door on the baseboard which I thought was silly. What was that? So I got down on my hands and knees, (which is a very brave thing to do on an Irish pub floor) and I see a tiny notepad with the words “who are you voting for” on it. What the heck, I thought? So, I asked the bartender and she told me that the door was from the Irish Fairy Door Company and if you wrote notes to the resident fairy, or left them gifts they would respond, but, only when you were not watching. Amazing! I asked if I could find a fairy door for my house because my kids would love to have a secret fairy friend to leave notes for. The bartender told me of course and that “each Irish fairy door comes with a magic key in a bottle, three stepping stones, the Family / Fairy Lease Agreement, a notepad for your fairy and the Fairy Welcome Guide for all you need to help settle your fairy into their new human home!” Your kids can have a charming fairy door too, imagine all the fun your family can have with your in home fairy? Now, I still want to know who the fairy is voting for? I will just have to go back for a few pints right?
There is nothing more rewarding and nothing more frustrating for children than learning to read. That is why there are so, so, so many products in the childsphere catered to that very task. In the 90’s Hooke On Phonics might have been the rage but we live in a modern world and we want you to check out Ooka Island. “Where?” Ooka Island ‘rents’, you gotta visit today! Reading as you know is a learned skill and you know what Malcolm Gladwell says about mastering a skill, but our kids don’t have the patience to wait 10,000 hours to learn to read do they? The reason Ooka Island is so cool is that your child is tasked with teaching the Ooka elves (in the game) how to read, and in doing so…they learn to read themselves. Clever. Ooka Island is created with over 25 years of clinical research so you can rest assures that it works. The game will even track and analyze your kid’s progress and cater that rest of the tasks to their needs. Skip the cartoons for a half and hour three times a week and before the end of the year, your child will be reading.
I mean when we start something with a Dad joke you just know the product we want to share with you must be awesome right? What’s the joke you ask? Well, we got a chance to check out some of the amazing products from ezpz (Less Mess, More Fun) and let me tell you they rock. Not just the cool silicone tableware but the people at the company too. (Just look how good their inventions are for kids with special needs!)
Their flagship product is the Happy Mat which is available in a few different colors, this patented mat suctions to your table with its food grade silicone and is much fun to eat off of as it is to look at.
We also fell in love with the super versatile Happy Bowl mat’s in our house because you can put ANYTHING in them so keep mealtime and playtime cleaner. Yeah, we said playtime because these mats are so super easy to clean that we thought hey why not fill them with Play-Doh or finger paints? You can easily wash off any mess in seconds or even throw it in the dishwasher for harder jobs, or if you are lazy like us.
Listen, these mats are just amazing in so many ways. All of your kids will love them no matter what their needs are. Mealtime can be a challenge and ezpz helps alleviate the mess and contain your kid’s food. If only they could ezpz the floors and walls you might have a spotless house after that mac & cheese dinner.
As Millennials, we are naturally drawn to anything that looks like Tetris so when we were sent Mental Blox 360° it was game over. This isn’t any old puzzle game, this one really makes you think, it’s almost like playing a Tetris/Monuments Valley mashup in real life.
You get these cards with an innocuous picture on them and then with the allotted blocks you have to figure out as quickly as you can how to make the design. Really, it is mental. We have seen a few 3D Building Game’s but this one has a fun alternate perspective take on it that really makes it fun for the whole family. You can even compete in teams to see who can create their cards image the quickest. Family game night just got mental!
Sure, it’s sweet that you scored a play kitchen for your kids but isn’t it sorta lame that all you have to stock it with an empty box of pasta and a can of coffee? Learning Resources has a fantastic A to Z Alphabet Groceries set that will cover your kid’s culinary needs from, well from A-Z right? Beyond that, each item is labeled with both the word and starting letter of the item inviting learning interactions each time your little Gordon Ramsey plays kitchen. Milk, beans, donuts, and yes even egg rolls will keep your child growing that awesome little imagination they are cultivating each and every play session. “Colorful, realistic groceries introduce early language skills and are great for imaginative play too! Each of the 26 groceries is labeled with a letter, word, and colorful picture. Reinforces letter recognition, everyday vocabulary, and creative role play. Cartons measure 6.5″H, Jars 4″H.” Who doesn’t love playing with their food? Grab this set today and have a blast together making up all sorts of delish dishes.
The almost two-year-old and I were killing some time in downtown Montpelier Vermont last week while on vacation because “mummy” was off pillaging a Zutano that was closing it’s doors forever. We stumbled into Bear Pond Books which has an amazing children’s section upstairs if you happen to be in the area ever. Once I got the kid out of the tree fort long enough to sit on my lap to read one of the many new books we found she instantly gravitated to Little Houses: A Counting Book by Helen Musselwhite. Sure, we have all seen counting books but Little Houses is so charming that we want you to add it to your must-read list with your toddler. Each page has the appropriate number of little houses and then other sets like cats, birds, bikes etc. I am happy to report that the book does work, we spent the rest of the trip hearing the toddler call out “won, tew, twee, foar, five, icks, evan, ate, nwine, tewn” from the backseat on an endless loop. Thanks, Helen, and thanks, Montpelier Zutano, our credit card bill should be interesting this month based on the number of bags my wife was carrying.
If you have little girls, letting them pick out their own outfit is a pretty entertaining exercise. Clash City, here we come. Now imagine your kids could design their own clothes. Well, that just takes it from entertaining into awesome territory, right? With Picture This, just print out a template for a dress, let them draw/color it in, snap a picture of it, upload it, and within 15 days their dress will be shipped to your home. What an incredible time to be alive. (T shirts, boys stuff and adult sizes coming soon).
As you console your kids this week because they are bummed about school starting let them know that the fun in the sun does not have to be over. Just because they have homework again does not mean the fun has to stop! It’s still HOT out right? Baseball is still on the TV at night right? The pool is still open for business right? You still get iced coffee in the morning right? You haven’t switched burgers on the grill for beef stew in the crock pot yet, right? Your wife still hasn’t packed away the bikini right? Right? Okay, we can skip that last one but cmon you are still a “fun dad” right? Please tell us that hasn’t changed just because Tony Romo getting hurt is the annual first sign of fall! No? Okay then, get these three things today and extend summer into the fall daddy!
Hurricane “Reusable” Water Balls – ($12) Because why would you not want the ability to drench your kids up to 1,000 times with one hurricane ball? Toss, throw, play & splash your way into colder afternoons.
Hydro Swirl Spinning Sprinkler – ($13) Don’t use the same boring sprinkler that you water your prized tomatoes with to entertain your kids. This sprinkler wiggles and splashes in unpredictable directions making that backyard water play endlessly fun.
Hydro Twist Pipeline Sprinkler – ($12) If the hydro swirl isn’t enough to keep you in the summer spirit here is one pipeline that both sides of the aisle can agree on. The Hydro Twist Pipeline Sprinkler runs 8 feet across your lawn and you don’t have to worry about any eminent domain issues, just how wet and wild your kids will get dodging the fountains of water.
And while your kids are having a blast this late summer maybe you should be trying some of those summer beers we talked about huh?
“Carrots?” “Noe Dadd-ie.” “How about some beans, you love beans?” “Mummy, noooo.” “Ravioli?” “Noe!” “But, listen, you loved ravioli last week just try some okay?” “Noooooo.” What if I put it in this cool fish placemat?” – – – “More…pwease?” If you have a kid over the age of one you know the joys of dinner time, right? Nothing will make it easy unless you want to serve up Lunchables every night so you have to find fun ways to introduce new foods and sometimes that included the foods presentation to the toddler. Hexnub has created a really great silicone placemat/plate that not only makes your life easier but will entertain your fickle kid too.
If you have a kid over the age of one you know the joys of dinner time, right? Nothing will make it easy unless you want to serve up Lunchables every night so you have to find fun ways to introduce new foods and sometimes that included the foods presentation to the toddler. Hexnub has created a really great silicone placemat/plate that not only makes your life easier but will entertain your fickle kid too. “The Fish Placemat is easy to transport and stack. Mats can be rinsed with warm soapy water or placed in the dishwasher. Our placemats are also oven & freezer safe, made out of the highest quality silicone that meets all safety standards (BPA, fishPVC, lead and phthalate free).” We encourage your kids to play with their food on this non-slip placemat. Move those peas from the tail to the eye, stack the eggs along the edge and fill the fish eye with syrup so they dunk those pancakes! We have been using this placemat in our home for a few weeks and while string beans can still be a challenge, things have gotten a lot smoother.
Today is #NationalBookLoversDay, well, maybe not today it really depends on when you are reading this. Caveat time, we think every day can be book lovers day right? Science proves it, your parents proved it, time has proved it, reading to your kids is super important. One of the best books to a dad can read to their kiddo is Faster! Faster! by Leslie Patricelli. We also suggest grabbing the English/Spanish version Faster! Faster!/Mas Rapido! Mas Rapido! because there is nothing cuter than your son riding daddy horsey yelling “Mas Rapido daddy!” Buy it today and your own personal #NationalBookLoversDay can be any day you choose.