Chuggington Arrives in the U.S.

Chugga, Chugga, Chugga! Already a global hit, Chuggington, a Ludorum property, is a CGI children’s show that focuses on a trio of trainee Chuggers and is set to debut on Playhouse Disney on Monday, January 18. Playhouse Disney, home to kiddie favorites like Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and one of our faves, the Imagination Movers, is known for introducing fun and playful shows—especially ones with theme songs that are sure to linger. (Hot Dog dance, anyone?)

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Chuggington, which is geared to the preschool crowd, follows three young trainees, Wilson, Brewster and Koko and their colorful adventures. Introduced in the U.K. in 2008, and then in France, Australia, Germany, Japan and Canada, Chuggington is poised to be the new favorite locomotive series stateside.

The show conveys life lessons and social-emotional values relevant to preschoolers, validating its global popularity with kids and their parents. Chuggington was developed by the same brains behind Bob the Builder (Sarah Ball, Director and Writer) and Thomas the Train (Don Toht who led the creation of the toys systems).
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P’kolino Introduces a Chalk Table

P’kolino, best known for their modern and innovative children’s furniture and toys, has added a Chalk Table to their product lineup. The Chalk Table, which has a cool pair of bench-style seats, features a reversible tabletop that hides a clever storage space underneath. Can this table be any more perfect for a budding Renoir or Matisse?
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Always a fan of clean aesthetic and functional design, P’kolino’s Chalk Table would complement any stylish preschooler’s room—boy or girl. I’ve been a longtime admirer of P’kolino’s Klick Desk and Little Reader, the Chalk Table is likely to find its way on to my shopping list, once we move to a bigger space. I’ve seen the great quality of a few P’kolino products in person, but I’ve yet to see this one, since it was just introduced. Once I have the chance to see the Chalk Table for myself, I’ll be sure to report back.

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The $90 P’kolino Chalk Table is available for pre-order now and starts shipping on January 20th…and it looks like they’re offering free shipping, too!

New year, new horizons

Happy Monday and happy 2010, everyone. I hope you had a lovely holiday break and are recovering/transitioning ok! Our family enjoyed a very nice Christmas and quiet New Year; it was just the right amount of family time. After a hectic fall and holiday season, I took a much needed break from blogging and writing. Apologies for the lack of posts, but things will be back to normal this week.

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photo credit: Selva Ganapathy

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Tree Lighting Celebration and Pixar Shorts

Tonight is one of my most favorite nights for holiday tv: it’s the annual Rockefeller Tree Lighting on NBC! This year, is a little different since we’re not even in the NYC are at the moment, but it’s sure to be just as amazing!

As in years past, this tree lighting will be ushered in by a host of fabulous celebs and one of my favorites, Zachary Levi of Chuck will be hosting alongside of Jane Krakowski of 30 Rock Fame.

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The tree lighting celebration will feature Michael Buble, Aretha Franklin, Alicia Keys, Barry Manilow, The Roots, Shakira, and The Radio City Rockettes performing a mix of some festive tunes. I heard some rumblings that the Electric Mayhem (as in The Muppets!) will perform along with Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo, and Pepe the King Prawn tonight as well!

Aside from the Tree Lighting Celebration on NBC, be sure to catch day 2 of ABC Family’s annual “25 Days of Christmas.” The ABC Family 25 Days of Christmas will features a great lineup of holiday family movies, with the Pixar Shorts as the highlight for me.
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Starting at 7:00 p.m. tonight as part of the 25 Days of Christmas on ABC Family, Disney will present 20 “Pixar Short Films.” The lineup of shorts will include: “Presto,” “Lifted,” “Jack-Jack Attack,” “BURN-E,” “Unidentified Flying Mater,” “Adventures of Andre and Wally B.,” “Boundin,” “For the Birds,” “Geri’s Game,” “Knick Knack,” “Luxo Jr.,” “Mater and the Ghostlight,” “Mike’s New Car,” “One Man Band,” “Red’s Dream,” “Tin Toy,” “Your Friend the Rat,” “Rescue Squad Mater,” “Mater the Greater” and “El-Materdor.”

Jack Jack Attack and Boundin’ are our family’s absolute favorites!

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The Tree Lighting Ceremony AND Two fun hours of Pixar awesomeness! Holiday programming just doesn’t get any better than tonight!

Superstuffed Nicksgiving Weekend

While we all have turkey and stuffing on the brain, I guess it’d be a good time as any to let you know what our friends over at Nickelodeon have planned.  Dubbed Superstuffed Nicksgiving Weekend, Nick has a great lineup of shows this weekend including new episodes, marathons, and movies.

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2.1 Million Stork Craft Dropside Cribs Recalled

The CPSC and Stork Craft have announced a massive recall on 2.1 million Stork Craft drop-side cribs, including about 147,000 Stork Craft drop-side cribs with the Fisher-Price logo, citing that the drop-side plastic hardware can break, deform, or parts can become missing which can cause the drop-side to detach in one or more corners.

As a result of these detachments and design faults, suffocation and other injuries have been reported.

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Lionel Electric Trains Comes to 30 Rock

IMG_2822Christmas is in the air, guys. Just this week, I attended 3 holiday-related events including this fun one that train lovers would enjoy!

Well loved among train enthusiasts and little kids alike, Lionel Electric Trains, recently opened its first pop up retail shop in Rockefeller Center. In its 100+ year history, this is the first time Lionel Trains has set up shop in New York, 30 Rock on 50th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues to be exact.

Because of its high traffic location, this pop up shop in the heart of midtown attracted a flock of tourists and shoppers.  The Lionel store featured various train sets, including an impressive set that was activated with the push of a button.

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The conversation is changing

I usually keep my musings on motherhood on my personal blog, Babyrific, but I think the event that I attended today is one that so many moms would find of interest. So, here’s a re-post of my latest entry from Babyrific:

Lots of cool stuff going on today–actually all of this week. As I’ve mentioned and tweeted about frequently, as a blogger and writer, I’m often asked to attend cool events. Today’s event is a rather cool one, and one that I’ve spoken about candidly, but have treaded lightly for reasons I’ll explain below.
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Maclaren Issues Recall on all Strollers

Over the weekend, news broke that Maclaren is issuing a recall for one million strollers. According to reports, this massive recall affects its production between 1999 and 2009, which includes the Volo, Triumph, Quest Sport, Quest Mod, Techno XT, Techno XLR, Twin Triumph, Twin Techno and Easy Traveller.

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On its website, Maclaren said,

in cooperation with the USPC, we are providing free of charge to all affected consumers and retailers a kit to cover the stroller’s hinge mechanism, which poses a fingertip amputation and laceration hazard to the child when the consumer is unfolding/opening the stroller.

The CPSC and Maclaren will issue a press release on the recall tomorrow, but Maclaren began notifying its dealers of the recall in the past couple of days.

Because all Maclaren strollers are included in this recall, parents should:

• Stop using (or limit use of) all Maclaren strollers until you get a hinge cover. Even those dating back to 1999 are included in the recall.

Order a hinge cover from Maclaren’s. More details will be provided Tuesday once the official recall goes live. (I will be sure to link)

As with all recalls, there’s no need to panic; your best bet is to stay informed and act accordingly to ensure safety, as far as your kid gear is concerned. I’ll post more details as I get them.

And the winner is…

Thank you everyone so much for participating in the My Awesome Giveaway! From the reception of the contest, it’s quite evident that NYC Yo Gabba Gabba fans are no joke!

Congratulations to Jill Walenga! Watch your email for details! Congrats and enjoy! [As with all contests, the winner has 48 hrs to email me back. If I don't hear from them after that, I will pick a new winner.]

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I wish I had more tickets to give away, but alas, there can only be one winner. Thank you again everyone for participating in such a fun giveaway.

For those still interested in scoring tickets, I just noticed that one of my good friends, Carol of NYCityMama is holding her own giveaway for YGG tickets to the 5pm show on 11/21. Her contest ends today and has different rules and regulations, so please make sure to read them before entering…and tell her Jen from NKT sent ya!

Thanks again everyone!