Last week it was Mia's birthday, and we were quite pleased with a few of the presents that we found for her so I thought that I'd share them. She has been interested in playing shops for quite some time, and I'm finding that it's a great way to start teaching her a bit of number recognition as well as indulging her love for role play.
Mia had been talking about having a shopping trolley for some time, but all the ones that we'd seen were aimed at younger toddlers, quite large and clunky in bright plastic colours. She was also adamant that it had to have a seat for her dolly. So Ram found her this fab realistic little toy Waitrose shopping trolley in John Lewis. Her dollies fit in comfortably, it has a nice padded handle, and there is plenty of space in the trolley as well as space underneath for a shopping basket.
It's great because it's not too large, it looks good, and because it's quite subdued in colour it doesn't stick out too much when it's stored in the corner of the room. It cost £18 which I thought was quite reasonable for a sturdy, well made toy.
John Lewis sell nice baskets of groceries too, but we preferred a much cheaper one that we found on Amazon, at only £5 I think it was a bargain - Child's Shopping Basket. It came packed with plenty of play food inside and it's quite small, which means that it fits on the shelf underneath the trolley and Mia can carry it around easily. Some of the packets have barcodes on them which Mia enjoys placing against her till to 'scan' them like she does when I use the self-service till at the supermarket. The boxes are perhaps a little flimsy for very little ones to play with, but I think that ours are at the age now where they will look after them better.
We've never had any kind of toy till for the children, but I've always known it was something that they'd both love, so we spent a bit of time looking for a nice one. We wanted one that was durable and long lasting, and preferably a bit more grown up than the basic bright plastic toys aimed at younger toddlers. It's quite difficult to find one that resembles the type of tills that are actually used in supermarkets, but in the end we opted for the Calculator Cash Register by Learning Resources.
A big bonus is that it is solar powered so it doesn't need any batteries, and it has a lovely drawer for the money underneath which is easy to open and close with the press of a button and makes a satisfying 'ding'. The till beeps when you press a button and when you insert the credit card, and it's also a fully functioning calculator. The till comes with a full set of play money, both coins and notes (UK denominations) as well as a play credit card. At just over £25 it's a little pricier than some of the other toy tills on the market, but I'm hoping that we'll get our money's worth from it. I've noticed that even though Mia has not had it long she's already starting to recognise her numbers, something that I've been trying to teach her for a while and not found a way to keep her interested. The large flat area on the left is great to press the food boxes up against and use as a scanner.
Finally when you are shopping you need somewhere to put your money, and I love these little purses that my Mum bought for the children a little while ago. I've no idea where they are from I'm afraid, but they are so sweet!
With perfect timing, last week I received a copy of Let's Go Shopping Peppa to review. The book is all about Peppa's trip to the supermarket when Peppa and her family need something tasty for lunch. At the supermarket, Peppa finds everything on Mummy Pig's shopping list, but when they get to the checkout something extra has appeared in their trolley..! I really like this particular story because the scenario of going shopping is something that is familiar to all little ones, even if perhaps in reality they don't all love it as much as Peppa and George do! Mia watches a lot of Peppa Pig, so this book was a big hit, we loved reading it together and because she has seen the corresponding television episode several times she knew what was going to happen and enjoyed telling me all about it. A lovely companion gift!
We've set up a little shop in the corner of the living room and I can see many days ahead of playing toy shops. Mia loved helping me to make the shop (she built the little walls herself out of her coloured blocks) and she's already learned a few tricks of the trade, like placing a few little toys by the till to tempt the buyer, and then trying to sell me something extra while I'm paying for my shopping!
I think that our shopping role play set up is pretty well sorted now!
We received the Let's Go Shopping Peppa book to review, all the other bits we bought ourselves. Amazon links are affiliate.