For day three of my @iloveanchorage Instagram hosting gig, I added kids’ gifts to my holiday shopping suggestions. Besides playtime with the picks, I had fun hitting up a few spots that I rarely have a reason to shop. The energy inside our local toy stores this time of year can make you all that more excited for Christmas morning.
Here’s Wednesday’s guide to shopping local for your little ones:
My first kids’ holiday gift pick is the children’s book “I Would Tuck You In” ($16.99), by Alaskans Sarah Asper-Smith and Mitchell Wately, at Dos Manos Gallery (1317 W. Northern Lights Blvd.). It’s a sweet tale of mothers’ love told by a cast of playful northern wildlife characters, but it’s not without a little animal education through fun fauna facts.
The adult authorities at Classic Toys (341 E. Benson Blvd.) tell me that the Perplexus ($22.99-$29.99) is a hot item with both girls and boys, so I’m sticking with their playtime expertise for number two on my kids’ gift list. It’s a three-dimensional maze game that requires your future brain surgeon to troubleshoot and think critically. Heck, this game is even recommended by MENSA. The best part: No batteries required.
These colorful, soft Cate and Levi hand puppets ($34.98) at Metro Cooks (580 E. Benson Blvd.) are my number three kids’ gift pick. They’re made by hand from reclaimed materials, making each one unique and all about guilt-free fun.
Over the Rainbow Toys (12201 Industry Way) is bustling this week and totally worth a pop in to check out the Book Nook or Lego options that make your bare feet hurt just looking at ‘em. My number four kids’ gift pick is the Uncle Goose language blocks ($39.99-$44.99) in German, Japanese, Russian or Hebrew. Made of basswood, each set of blocks contains charming animal pictures and colorful letters and numbers.
Padraig Cottage baby slippers ($36.99) back at Classic Toys (341 E. Benson Blvd.) keep the boot pick for each of the giftees on your list alive and are my number five gift for kids. These slippers are crocheted from hand-dyed sheepskin and will keep those baby toes from being brrr-i-toes.
My last kids’ gift pick tonight is the Willow Designs stuffed animals ($27) at Dos Manos Gallery (1317 W. Northern Lights Blvd.). These cuddly creatures are made locally using recycled materials and full of funky personality.