toys

macarena bilbao dollsbed

Paul & Paula loves long lasting high quality toys.

Toys that the whole family plays with and after years and years are still in use. We share our favourites as well as new finds from the toys world.

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21jolly things for an awesome start into 2021!

paul paula blog 2021

Hi everyone. Now, I hope you are doing great. After the little bummer of being in lockdown over the holidays we just got the news that schools will not re-open next week either. It does not come as a huge surprise but resilience is written in B I G letters over my head now.

The days are short, cold and my motivation for another round of home schooling is more than low. I admit!

Still being positive and seeing the situation as a ‘it is what it is’ kind of thing I can feel my limits a bit more clear these days too.

So wherever you are, I really hope that you are ok and walking around with your chin up. I am sending you a virtual hug because we all need one.

Please enjoy some things, reads and finds to get into 2021 with a little skip… or tow:

wooden rainbow montessori
Great shop with wonderful Montessori toys that may make homeschooling a tiny bit easier!

10 Family-Friendly Things You Can Do at Home This Winter That Don’t Involve a Screen. Dwell.

 

fish stuffed animal handmade
Unique and very cute soft friends*!

The best things for ourselves and our families that made an unbelievably weird year just a little more manageable.

 

star moon coffee mug
Beautiful ceramics and I basically want them all. New year, new tea mug… :)

2020 celeb scandals.

 

oversize cashmere scarf
Spoil yourself ladies! With these luxury knitted items. Because home office means comfort and we want it chic.

I will join this ‘Ready to Crush’ 21 days challenge starting next Monday. You too?

 

linen tablecloth
I cannot even remember when I put a proper tablecloth on. But this year I bought one to make the holidays a tiny bit more festive. And I have to say – it is so lovely and make a great difference when it comes to atmosphere.
Meaning: I will get one for Spring too because the one I got fits more with the Christmas Mood.
My eyes are on those because nothing can beat linen*!

The simple knitted ensemble in subtle colours is T H E thing for adults right now. This is the perfect baby version*!

 

vegan aubergine cauliflower lentil harissa
I love herbs and spices and made this delicious vegan recipe recently. With lots of harissa!

How was 2020 for Chloe and Darshana? Read their interviews…

 

soor plom-velour-corduroy-overalls
New Soor Plom* collection available.

I am a huge fan of Ren Skincare and this is one of my favourite cleansers.

 

RAINBOW-VASE DIY
Great DIY. A paper mache rainbow vase.

It is cold outside baby. And this cream* will help to keep your skin in check.

 

ceramic palette and brush rest bunny
For the little artist: Bunny palette and brush rest* in ceramic!

OMG. This minty lip balm* is the best!

 

playroom mural sun
Very cool mural, all DIY and rather easy to copy!

2021 will definitely be the year of sneakers. (again)
What else would you wear with your comfort chic ensembles???
And these never go out of style…

 

lorna murray
These beautiful (sun) hats* are now available in Europe as well! Adult sizes are available as well.

 

Happy 2021 everyone!!! Lots of love, health, and resilience…

 

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Baby and toddler playtime with a purpose!

lovevery

After sharing the most darling baby clothing brands and ideas for a baby’s first Christmas, I have something else that is just as fab for the youngest of our families. US brand Lovevery just launched it’s children’s educational play products and toys in Europe.

The young and award-winning brand wants to help all parents feel confident that they are giving their children the best start in life. How? Lovevery’s toys promote brain development and give children the best possible start in life. They launched with their bestselling Play Gym and Block Set that I will show you more in detail below.

Every product is rooted in science, thoughtfully crafted, and made for learning. We received samples to have a look at the quality and I have to say I am very impressed. You know that I love wooden toys and as a mum of 4 I have seen and played myself with a lot of toys. The colours are vibrant, the wood very soft, the edges are round, and the packaging is on par with what I expect from a high-quality brand.

What does Lovevery stand for?

Our goal is to help every parent feel confident. Our play products are designed by child development experts with the simplest, purest purpose: to be exactly what children need at each stage.

Jessica and Rod created Lovevery, to help create developmental experiences in the lives of new babies and families. Helping parents feel confident that they are giving their little ones just what they want and need every step of the way.

 

loveryvery toy blocks

The award-winning Block Set

Now, you may say: Blocks are blocks and have been around for generations. And that is true. However, here is an innovative approach to an old concept. This 70 pieces high-quality wooden set that comes with accompanying shapes and tools is designed to take a child from 18 to 48+ months seamlessly. It is made from sustainably harvested wood and water-based non-toxic paint and comes in a very beautiful wooden box.

And all together we are looking at 20 stage-based challenges and activities that are possible with just one set: 18 colourful cubes for counting, stacking and toppling. Mix and match with other shapes to explore more advanced physical concepts. 18 differently coloured planks for fun practice with balance, stability, and geometry. 9 geometrically shaped blocks and 2 arches for imaginative play, shape sorting, and more complex building and balancing. 4 wooden friends to help bring a whole new world of imagination to life.  And even more magic: 7 pieces fit together to transform the wooden storage box into a simple pull along car! Next, you have 7 threadable wooden items and the shape-sorting lid, and a divider doubles as a ramp. Phew! Plenty of playtime ahead!

Lovevery+Play+Gym+
The play gym that gives you a whole year of play

The gym is crafted with natural materials, and sustainably sourced, FSC-certified wood. And it is a product that will help you connect with your baby as they discover their new world. The mat comes with all accessories like various card sets, teething rings, contrast balls, and more. It focuses on the baby’s whole first year of play. And includes everything needed from battling teething, to tummy time, to learning to focus.

Personally, I like the look of this gym. It is an essential item and nice when it manages to be colourful and interesting enough for your baby and still fits in with your home and aesthetics. Furthermore, your baby will enjoy the high contrasts, the different textures, and you will love: There are no crazy and endless sounds!

lovevery blocks
Altogether I think that these products cover your baby’s and toddler’s needs perfectly. The investment of a high-quality toy, that entertains your child over a long period is well worth it. They do not need much, but stimulation and toys that get their creativity and senses going are ideal!

Grounded by science and backed by research, both products are designed to create developmental experiences in the lives of babies and children. Encompassing modern designs and updated approaches to early learning.

In collaboration with Lovevery!

PS: Loving the colours of the blocks… toys that decorate when baby is asleep!

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23 merry things for your December!

paul paula blog

This time I am sending you into the last month of the year. 2020 is close of being over and even so we have no idea what 2021 will bring, I am assuming everyone’s expectations are rather low. Therefore, it will be good! It has to be!

Over here, I did not manage to get this list out on the last Friday of the month as I am usually aiming for. But… just in time to start December – tomorrow- all merry, jolly and inspired.

Below, my finds, bookmarks and everything `I want to share with you. Full of gift ideas, beautiful things… and more.

Enjoy, have a wonderful festive time and remember: Love is the answer.

 

chunky knit blanket
Cosy Christmas Days with these chunky blankets in various sizes and colours!

Part puzzle, part immersive diorama construction kit

 

oyoyoyoy
OYOY has some lovely new items in their collection. Sweet tapestry, rugs, table ware…

THAT colour. I am in love. And so perfect for a cool festive outfit and that you will wear many times in 2021. Guaranteed!

 

wooden beads garland
A different, and oh so pretty, kind of garland. Love it! Very Scandinavian Christmas!

Fabulabox concept allows children to create their own streetscapes and cities from panels that can be easily assembled and disassembled.

 

simple folk 2

simple folk
The Simple Folk.

For my teenage daughter I got a few cute beauty products for Christmas, like this amazing body butter.

 

wooden christmas baubles
Wooden baubles* beautifully hand painted.

Goorin Bros!

 

vintage kids room
Cool vintage kids room.

Treat yourself mamas!

 

BATMM+Cover
Reading in December: Bartholomew and the Morning Monsters

Handmade robe bowls* for fruits, accessories, toys…

 

rainbow crochet baby blanket pattern
How about taking up crochet over the holidays? And make this gorgeous rainbow baby blanket*?

Three great baby fashion brands!

 

modern kids roommodern kids room
Sculptural shifts in ceiling heights with clever spatial proportions!
The absolute best workout leggings, especially for running are these. I love them and never wear anything else when doing my laps.

 

bunk bed self made
Loving the colourful stairs going up to the uber cool bunk bed. Family home in Denmark.

And another very cool family space in Paris.

 

linen dress girl
Handmade, sustainable children’s clothing*. Lovely linen dresses, rompers and accessories.

Fantastic prints, posters, postcards and more from various London neighbourhoods. Gorgeous illustrations* that make wonderful gifts!

 

book filled living room

scandi kids room
A room filled with books and a kids room with a view. I am moving in!

 

Sweet wishes from London to wherever you are…

 

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Baby’s first Christmas!

Baby's first christmas

Will you spend this years Christmas with a baby? And it will be baby’s first Christmas? That is definitely an “aww” moment that you will cherish and that you will never forget.

Commemorate this magical moment with an ornament for the tree you can bring out year after year. And some heirloom gifts that will accompany your child for many years to come. Or how about something personalised that will start a tradition like a stocking or gift sack?

Plus I really have the feeling that Christmas this year will be very heavy on the ‘let’s forget about everything else for a moment’ side of things. And rightly so. I heard that some Christmas Trees are already up to bring some cheer into people’s houses. And since there is nothing more magical for a child than Christmas time, why not make your baby’s first Christmas the most special of all?

Here is my take on some lovely keepsakes, baubles and presents for Baby’s First Christmas:

 

1. Baby’s First Christmas Bauble! Personalised with a cute rabbit in various colours.

2. Christmas Keepsake Advent Calendar – perfect for a baby’s first Christmas, to note down all of your Christmas activities and one to keep to look back on in years to come!

3. This is just the best thing I have seen for a while! Give your little one their first car! Made of wood, this beautiful toy offers many very realistic features: steering wheel, gearshift, horn, brake pedals and accelerator, air conditioning, radio and side-view mirrors. Your child will be able to play the mechanic, change a wheel or even lift the hood to see what’s underneath!

4. Organic cotton world Explorer Play Mat. Soft colour scheme suitable for either gender and can be used interactively for toddlers/preschoolers as they learn about places in the world and features. The mat can be machine washed easily and the base fabric is a thick GOTS organic cotton canvas in grey.

5. So cute. A stacking flower! Transform this flower according to your desires to invent and reinvent itself. Your child will be able to match colours and shapes with this toy.

6. Again, a wooden toy. But this stimulates endless play and has so many possibilities – wooden figurines! These charming wooden toys are made in Europe, designed to encourage and adapt to children’s development. Made of maple wood and hand-painted with a unique formula of non-toxic watercoulours.

7. And this cute wooden pram comes with its own mattress and pillow.

8.This growth chart features animal faces that smile as your little one grows up.

9. Baby cardigan in Christmas red with a beautiful Scandinavian pattern!

10. Again, this wooden building set, with its refined colour palette, is the ideal tool for building a world of many possibilities.

11. Personalised Christmas Stocking with Starry Night Stars.

 

And before you do, don’t forget to check out The best Advent Calendars !

 

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The best Advent Calendars!

best advent calendars

Ho Ho Ho! Christmas is getting closer and I am sure we are all in need of some love, little surprises and down time.

And if you read here for a while you must know that Advent Calendars are a must during Christmas Season in my house. The children already asked if we do it the same way we usually do. Let’s see… (I will share more at the end of this article)

Nonetheless, the day the first door will open… it is definitely time to countdown till Christmas and get a little more festive day by day! Do you agree?

I put together a lovely list of some excellent calendars for this year and there is something for everyone. DIY calendars, something for the minimalist, heirloom pieces as well as for Harry Potter fans.

The best Advent Calendars for 2020:

 

christmas advent calendar

Reusable Advent Calendar

What a beautiful fabric Advent Calendar* is an ideal alternative to the traditional boxed calendars. It can be used year after year and passed down through the family. Each pocket can be filled with your own small gifts, chocolates or little messages making it the ideal family Christmas keepsake.

 

hygge village advent calendar

Minimalist paper house advent calendar

Very sweet DIY advent calendar to shorten your wait for Santa. It consists of 24 houses in four different sizes. Once put together you will enjoy a Swedish village that is delightfully understated and makes every minimalist heart skip a beat.
All you need are scissors, a bit of glue and some treats and little gifts to fill the houses.
Pssst, there is a forest version as well!

 

fabric advent calendar

Fabric Advent Calendar

Each pocket of this Calendar* is beautifully embroidered with a number and is the perfect place to pop a little gift or message, creating a magical moment each morning. The pockets are made with gussets so they are big enough for a couple of smaller gifts or one a little bigger.

 

santa advent calendar boxes

Santa shaped Christmas advent boxes

Cute Santa advent calendar. Simply pop up the boxes and fill them with sweets and other little treats. Overall, each pack includes 24 boxes and 1 sticker sheet to assemble your own advent calendar.

 

christmas tree ornament advent calendar

Advent Calendar with small Christmas ornaments

The Christmas Ornament Advent Calendar can be used year after year. Simply hang the cotton twine under your mantle, down the stairwell or anywhere you wish to spread some Christmas cheer. Place one ornament in each cotton bag, and then tie the bags. Each day, open a new bag and hang the enclosed ornament on your Christmas tree. For a child you may want to add a little chocolate or candy in the bag as well. I love the idea of decorating the tree a little every day. It adds to the sparkle.
The set includes: 25 Hand-Stamped numbered cotton draw string bags, 25 wooden ornaments, 25 lengths of Bakers Twine, and 10ft Natural Cotton Twine to hang.

 

harry potter advent calendar

Harry Potter Advent Calendar

Every day you will get one Harry Potter* item like magic socks, a pencil, badge pin, phone stickers, or tattoos. And many more cool things. This Advent Calendar has been developed under strict adherence to the Warner Bros license.

 

cookie advent calendar

Cookie advent calendar

Yes! This is an edible calendar. And it can be personalised and it exists as a gluten free option too. Beautiful, different, and definitely sweet!

 

wooden heirloom toy advent calendar

Waldorf Toys Advent Calendar

With that wooden advent calendar kit* you might just have the most amazing thing in your playroom this Christmas. Children will enjoy playing with this set for years to come and it will brighten up any mantel or coffee table during the winter holidays when it is eventually outgrown, before being enjoyed again by the next generation.

 

digital download print advent calendar last minute

Printable Advent Calendar

A digital download and perfect for a last minute decision. (make sure to have high quality paper like thick white card stock on hand though!)
All in all, this cute Advent Calendar contains 7 different illustrated house shaped boxes. And is adorned with beautiful winter elements and patterns for your Christmas village.

 

embroidered advent calendar

Embroidered Advent Calendar

Made up of 25 individual embroidered designs each having an embroidered number and cute design as well as backing pieces. This is a DIY calendar.

 

advent calendar bags

Advent Calendar Bags

And these cute linen advent calendar bags can be filled with candy, small toys or lovely notes. You can choose from various linen colours like white, blue, or rose. Next you can choose between stars and Christmas trees prints and between silver and gold colours.
Furthermore, you can also request more bags, different sizes or even get the colours mixed.

 

ornament advent calendar

Ornament Advent Calendar

Unique ornament advent calendar! Comes with 24 laser cut birch ornaments, each hidden behind a red paper door. Simply lift the paper door each day until Christmas to reveal the ornament underneath. Pop and wiggle the ornament out from the surrounding wood, and hang on the tree.

 

Looking for ideas on what to hide in the calendar?

How about: A small chocolate, little box of raisins, a good wish for the day or a silly Christmas joke. Tiny Lego figures or small rubbers and paperclip packs. Small books, glitter glue, hair clips or a clementine…

This year I will take out our Heirloom calendar and fill each day with four little chocolates. Usually I buy tiny gifts and the children take turns. And they each have a chocolate filled calendar as well. But this year is different and with the shops closed I decided to go for chocolates. Easy!

Altogether: I am wishing you a beautiful and relaxing Advent time!

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Past articles about Advent Calendars:
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