GREAT GIFTS FOR LESS THAN $10!
Oballs and Oball Rattle. Rhino Toys makes these durable balls that are easy to grasp, dishwasher safe and come in a variety of bright colors, $5 to $10.
ABC and Count the Birdies by local author Matthew Porter, $8.95 each
Daddy Kisses, Daddy Cuddles, Mommy Hugs and Mommy Loves by Anne Gutman, $5.95 each
Gossie and Gertie by Olivier Dunrea, $6.95
Peek-A Who? by Nina Laden, $5.95
TODDLERS TO KINDERGARTENERS
Do-a-Dot Markers. Washable paints in a felt-tipped pen similar to a bingo marker, $10 (Teaching Toys and Books).
Spinning Typhoon from Holgate Toys. This beautiful handmade-in-the-U.S.A. toy is a variation on the classic top, $8 (Teaching Toys and Books).
The “Poppleton” early-reader series by Cynthia Rylant, $3.99 each
The “Fancy Nancy” early-reader series by Jane O’Connor, $3.99 each
The “Trucktown” series by Jon Scieszka, $3.99 each
Ecotronic Penguin Torch by Russimco. A hand-powered flashlight in the shape of a penguin. No batteries necessary; just crank it up with your hand and this model lets you turn it off to store the energy. $10 (Clover).
Yo-yos. Beginners will enjoy the Profly, which comes with a DVD to learn tricks. More advanced players will have fun performing wrap-style tricks with the Speed Beetle. $5–$10 (Teaching Toys and Books).
10 model sets by K’Nex. Great, complex building kits that come in a sturdy carrying case for easy storage and cleanup. $10 (Clover).
Bracelet-making kits from Craftsbury Kids. Complete with vintage Lucite beads, available in a rainbow of colors. $6 (Clover).
Puffin Classics by Penguin/Puffin. Titles from Alice in Wonderland to King Arthur will attract children with their great cover art and oversized format. $5 each (Teaching Toys and Books).
TWEENS & TEENS
Okido stationery. An affordable new art supplies and stationery line with a teen-pleasing vibrant personality. Fun, function and fashion come together in this broad assortment of products that includes colored pencils, pens, crayons, erasers, paper pads and stationery sets. $2 to $10 (Bellevue Art and Frame).
The Palace of Laughter by Jon Berkeley, $7.99
Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George, $7.99
Kiki Strike by Kirsten Miller, $7.95
GREAT GIFTS FOR LESS THAN $20!
Classic wooden blocks by Uncle Goose Toys. $14 (Clover, Ballard).
Abacus and dumbbell rattles by Earthentree. Sold locally by a Kirkland mom, these are handcrafted by artists in India and colored with safe, natural vegetable dye. $16.
Pipapo by Haba. High-quality, safe infant toy consisting of interlocking rings and beads. Encourages development of fine motor skills and was crafted to withstand years of play. $14.99 (Bellevue Art and Frame).
Higher! Higher! by Leslie Patricelli, $15.99
TODDLERS TO KINDERGARTENERS
Shape & Sort It Out by Plan Toys. Classic wooden shape sorter made from environmentally friendly, second-use rubberwood. Kids love figuring out how to match up and manipulate the brightly colored wooden shapes through the puzzle top and into the box. $19 (Clover).
Stage puppets. Fabulous puppet-maker Folkmanis introduces a new line of “stage puppets” in a variety of animals, from a sparkly unicorn to the Big Bad Wolf. $20 (Teaching Toys and Books).
Turboprop airplane with pilot by Plan Toy. Made from recycled rubber trees, water-based paints and glues, and all packaging is recycled and printed with soy inks. $12.99 (Bellevue Art and Frame).
Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed by Mo Willems, $16.99
Adèle & Simon by Barbara McClintock, $16
Build a Bird Feeder by Toysmith. Easy-to-assemble wooden bird feeder kit that comes with six colorful acrylic paints and paintbrush. Kids learn about construction, painting and birds! $16.99 (Bellevue Art and Frame).
63-piece puzzles by Mudpuppy. Maps of the world and the Unites States, fairy tales and wildlife scenes all fabulously illustrated in bright colors. $14 (Clover).
Make Your Own Sock Puppet by Creativity for Kids. Transform three supersoft socks into a trio of fuzzy friends. $18 (Bellevue Art and Frame).
That Book Woman by Heather Henson, $16.99
Wonderful new books by Paul Stewart (author of the “Edge Chronicles”): Fergus Crane, Hugo Pepper and Corby Flood, $14.95 each.
TWEENS + TEENS
Pinhole camera kit by Noted. Create a well-functioning pinhole camera that uses 35mm film and looks like a real camera. $20 (Clover).
The Legend of Landlock by Gamewright. A great visual strategy game. $12 (Clover).
PhD pocket discs. Great for active tweens and teens, these brightly colored, 100 percent cotton, fair-trade flyers are handmade in Guatemala. $13 (Teaching Toys and Books).
Scat by Carl Hiaasen, $16.99
Here Lies Arthur by Phillip Reeve, $17.99
On the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta, $17.99
Our gift gurus
Bellevue Art and Frame and The Toy Place
1028 116th Ave. N.E., Bellevue, 425-453-8959
5335 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle, 206-782-0715
Teaching Toys and Books
2624 N. Proctor St., Tacoma, 253-759-9853
7220 Woodlawn Ave. N.E., Seattle, 206-518-5886
Win a free birthday party!
Four lucky readers will win a cool birthday party for their child. Enter to win by emailing us by April 15; put “party” in the subject line — and be sure to tell us which party you’re entering to win!
Organic Kids’ birthday party at Seattle’s earth-friendly, organic Pizza Fusion! The birthday kid and 10 friends enjoy pizza, salad, Molly Moon’s organic ice cream and Honest Kids Organic Thirst Quencher, in a semi-private dining room with balloons! 1412 12th Ave., Seattle. 206-709-8400.
Splashy fun at Safe N Sound Swimming! Twelve children suit up for wild fun in the wet; a free one-hour party on a weeknight or Saturday. 12225 N.E. 60th, Bothell. 425-486-7233.
Climb the walls — literally! — at Warehouse Rock Gym! As many as 14 kids get to gear up for a free, supervised climb. 315 Jefferson St. N.E., Olympia. 360-696-WALL.
South Sound parents — here’s a giggle: How about a $200 gift certificate for the Clownbuggie? 253-334-3472.