Who was your favourite soft toy to cart around when you were growing up?
A cat that squeaked was mine. Given to me at 3 years old by my godmother I am proud to say that Squeak (who was spent a summer being named Hot Dog as a homage to the book I was reading whose main character had her own stuffed toy also called Hot Dog) is still going strong and squeaking 30 years later! It is incredibly common for children to attach themselves to soft and plushy toys, recent studies show that the combination of being able to care and nurture for something and the simple comfort of a squashy cuddle of something soft is behind the attraction. No doubt parents everywhere will be muttering something along the lines of ‘No Sugarlumps Sherlock’ after the particular gem of scientific research was unveiled!
Our own kids are well entrenched in the stuffed animal phase of childhood which has prompted me to look for something a little bit different when it comes to choosing what new stuffy (as they call them) to get for their upcoming birthdays.
For giving your child an experience along with a stuffy, Build-a-Bear has been great go to options or years, but did you know that if you can’t make it to one of their shops you can get them on online? The ability to add loads of customisable bells and whistles like a heartbeat, character sounds, clothes and even smells, not to mention the option to create a personalised birth certificate for your new friend makes the shopping process just as much fun as playing with the finished item. One other great benefits of Build-a-bear is that they have a huge range of character bears, everything from Pokemon to My Little Pony to Starwars can be found in fluffy bear form, plus Groupon has some great Build-a-Bear deals running at the moment that will stretch that birthday budget even further.
Adopt an animal
For the environmentally conscious child in your life you might want to consider a cuddly companion that is part of an animal adoption kit. Not only will your own little love bug get a plushy version of the animal thy have adopted they will also be kept put to date with the conservation efforts that are being used to protect the species. The WWF works on a global scale and offers adoptions on a wide range of animals but you may also want to look closer to home, many animal sanctuaries and zoos also offer adoptions that come with a stuffy to love
Designs that do good
For a slightly more off the wall approach take a look at Ikea’s Sagoskatt range of soft toys. Designed by other children this loveable cast of characters are like no other plushy play things you will find on the market! What makes them even better is that 100% of sales go to charity!
Good luck on finding the perfect plushy for your wee one, we wish you happy cuddling!