Post-LEGO Movie Inspiration: LEGOs, Duplos, and LEGO Friends

If The LEGO Movie inspired the child in your life to get building, we’re re-posting a review we did back in 2012 of the LEGO options that make up today’s market.

LEGO Friends, the new-ish “legos for girls” are a hot item. From the voice of Get More Girls into STEM (science, tech, engineering, and math), some people love them and some people hate them. They were even nominated for a TOADY award (Toys Oppressive and Destructive to Young children). I don’t love them, although since I first wrote this, LEGO has drastically expanded their offerings to be less gender stereotyped, and I even bought one for Fair Play Niece for Christmas. I’ll also go off on a tangent in this post about toy companies and their treatment of horses in children’s toys because this is a lifelong pet peeve of mine.

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Getting Reel: The LEGO Movie

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Yesterday afternoon we took a break from dissertation-related arts and crafts (really) to go see The LEGO movie with some Fair Play/grad school friends. If we’re being honest and accountable, it seemed like a nice break from work…that was still sort of like work. In any event, here it is, the one-line take on The LEGO movie, paraphrased and third hand through some other Fair Play friends: well it wouldn’t pass the Bechdel test, but it was pretty funny and the leading lady is the only one with any brains or competence.

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Kid Crafts: Two Minute Valentines

Valentines (6)You know how we love our quick crafts around here! Today we bring you some valentines you and your child can make in about two minutes flat. Homemade valentines are a fun project, and result in a more heartfelt card than the heavily branded, cheap cardboard ones you can buy at the store. Because you made them yourself, you know they’ll be gender fair!

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Fixing Valentines Day: Friendship Thanksgiving

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I have a lot of problems with Valentines Day. Valentines Day is not only a day of celebrating all things gender-unfair, via a hyped celebration of gender roles. It is also (perhaps even equally so) a day of consumerism. Adults spend a great deal of money proving to themselves they’ve realized their full and highest potential as (heterosexual) sentient beings by buying fancy gifts, dinners, lingerie, booze, and so on, for what is supposed to be the good of their relationship. Children are in on this action as well. It is expected that most children bring valentines to school (often the cardboard variety with Disney Princesses) to distribute to their classmates. These little cards often have candy or a treat attached but rarely much of a note. This whole charade in the celebration of gender roles. Now, if this all bothers you, you don’t have to celebrate Valentines Day. Certainly the choice to abstain is yours. But, can we fix it instead? I say yes, and yes we should. Continue reading

Gift Guide: Roominate (Birthday ideas for an 8 y/o girl)

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Today we’re excited to bring you a recent Gift Guide letter from a Facebook fan!

Fair Play I need a recommendation for an 8-year-old girl birthday present.

We have just the thing! We’ve actually mentioned this toy in the past, but deemed it somewhat out of the average Gift Guide price range. Now it is available for much less, and ships via Amazon Prime. Roominate is the fully customizable doll house you wish you had.

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New Year, New Babies: Gifts for Newborns

It’s true that new babies can be born any time of the year, but it’s fun to talk about them this time of the year when the new year is still fresh and the weather outside is gloomy. We also got a Gift Guide letter about this, so why not? File this one away for the next new baby in your life if you don’t find it to be timely. Anyway, unless you’ve actually had a newborn child of your very own, it can be kind of daunting to shop for one. It can also be one of the most difficult arenas in which to fight the gender-fair battle. There is a lot of pink and blue, and also a lot of CUTE! So be forewarned, you will need to approach your shopping with your gender-fair mantras in-hand (in-brain?). Let’s take a look at some of the options.

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Getting Reel: More Movies for Snow Days

HungerGamesDVDYesterday we talked about our new Disney favorite, Frozen. We also reminded you about some other animated favorites. Today we’re going to give you a little more ammo for this season’s snow days and delays: The Hunger Games books and movies.

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Getting Reel: Movies for all these Snow Days

FrozenDVDIt’s true that today, Saturday, we’re having something of a heat wave in central PA. But, most of last week states across the country were gripped by cold and blessed with snow days or delays. And if the models are to be believed, next week will return to the same. If you find yourself house-bound with your kiddos, you might be looking for something to occupy them quietly while you work from home. Alternatively, you might be hoping for a warm-ish outing. This weekend, we’re going to talk about gender-fair movie options for both right now. Today we’ll start with Frozen, tomorrow we’ll cover the Hunger Games (books and movies).

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