by Vicky When I was a child, the only toy store around was a small Toy World at the local mall. I remember saving my birthday money to buy myself a Pogo Ball. Remember those? It was my favourite toy until it got a slow leak and never quite bounced the same way.
Another favourite toy was my Cabbage Patch doll. She had gold coloured hair and blue eyes, and wore a teal dress with lace around the edges. I remember the day she became mine, like it was yesterday. We were on a family vacation in the states, and stopped in at Toysrus. I stood in front of a towering stack of Cabbage Patch dolls and my mother said 'pick one.'
Fast forward 25 years, and I still get that rush of excitement when visiting toy stores - especially when it's All About Kids! All About Kids is the mother of all toy stores. You will love it. It is my first stop for birthday presents. The selection is remarkable, and the toys are good quality. It's an educational supply company, so they carry a very large selection of art & craft supplies, games, puzzles, and equipment for daycares and preschool. You'll find all the big names there, like Little Tikes, Melissa & Doug, Plan Toys, and Playmobile. But they have THOUSANDS of items to choose from.
The front has a good selection of outdoor toys and structures, and a play area for kids - but who are we kidding here, you try telling your kid they have to stay put in a huge warehouse! The back of the store has teaching resources galore - lots of posters, borders, and anything you could possibly need for your classroom.
What I love about buying toys here is that you can find such a variety of things that you don't see at the other big box stores. You won't be bombarded with all the latest Pixar characters on every toy. You won't see aisle after aisle of battery operated toys that break before the batteries wear out. You'll find quality toys like this marble run game for example; it was a huge hit for both my "boys"
Or this set of Gears! Gears! Gears! that we gave one of Joel's preschool friends for his 3rd birthday.
All About Kids is tucked away on Canotek Drive, in an East End industrial park, so it's not obvious to find. But it's definitely worth a stop in!
All About Kids 5369 Canotek Dr - Map (613) 742-0308 www.allaboutkids.info
9:30 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. Mon. to Fri. 11:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Sat. Closed Sundays.
Vicky is the mom to 3.5 year old son named Joel and 9 month old daughter named Mieka. You can read her blog at blog Some Kind of Wondermom.