While the JoyHog audience may be older and wiser than the population that still watches cartoons and drinks out of sippy cups (certain exemptions do apply), we thought we’d hunt down some goodies that would work for the Junior JoyHogs in your life. And if you find yourself yearning for them yourself, throw caution to the wind and buy them! You’re a grown up (ish), you can do whatever you want!
2007 Holiday Barbie
$43 / Mattel
Barbie designers have wised up in recent years so that the new dolls are marginally less likely to make young girls feel bad about their bodies. Eating disorders aside, the new holiday Barbie looks pretty radiant. She’s very glitzy and ooh-la-la, but not in a dirty way, so get one for the little ladies in your life.
The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Volume One
Paramount Home Entertainment
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, Indiana Jones rocks! With this set of DVDs you’ve got all those episodes of the series plus documentaries that are often just as long about all the historical figures. It’s the academic equivalent of “Music from tonight’s episode of ‘Dawson’s Creek’ includes…” This is a GOOD gift. Like, seriously.
Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A Classic Illustrated Edition
Chronicle Books / $19.95 / Hardback
If you ask us, the Grimm Brothers always had the creepiest children’s stories around. Not that we’re knocking ’em…Hansel and Gretel is awesome! We wanna see somebody get seasoned and baked! But for the little tykes, this slim book has the drive-by versions of all the stories. Perfect for the Millenial Generation with the attention span of a fruit fly. Though it’s quick, this Brothers Grimm is a good primer before you crack open the gory versions.
Enchanted: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Walt Disney Records
The kids have already gone cuckoo for the movie, so you might as well get them the tunes. Beyond the stuff by Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz (yay! Disney is back!), there are some pop tunes by folks like Carrie Underwood. Check out the video on Amazon.com.
High School Musical 2: Extended Edition
Buena Vista Home Entertainment
The craze continues. They sing, they dance, they are a fabulous throwback to the ‘60s beach scene with its pop sensations bobbing their hair to and fro. Mouseketeering is back and better than ever. It’s good stuff, and may just save childhood altogether.
Nicholas and the Gang
$20 / Phaidon
It’s the French answer to Dennis the Menace (now in English for the first time). This is the fourth book in the series, so depending on how mischievous the children in your life have been, perhaps the entire set is in order. They’re sturdy books with just enough illustrations of cheeky-ness.
Playmobil Jet Plane
$50 / Playmobil
The Sarni boys were big fans of Playmobil growing up, so of course, when we decided to add kiddie-fodder to this year’s fun list, these adorable toys were top of the list. This fabulous plane has a pop-open top where you can see the goings-on inside. With a great eye for detail, these toys will never go out of style. www.playmobil.com
Buena Vista Home Entertainment
Perfect to keep the little ankle-biters at bay while you decorate the ginger bread house. Of course, given the culinary nature of this one, they might boost themselves up in a high chair and demand a set of kitchen utensils to help with the cooking agenda.
The Annotated Secret Garden / The Annotated Hans Christian Andersen
$35 / W.W. Norton
Norton has published two wonderful volumes of classic tales. Well, there’s a whole series, but these are the new ones. The annotations include notes on the history of the stories and their evolution through popular culture, appealing to little kids and big ones. The illustrations are a nice mix as well – from original drawings from early books to photos and posters from the film adaptations. Very Reading Rainbow. That’s a good thing.
Spiderman 3 Ultimate Web Blaster
$35 / Hasbro
The little cherubs are bound to make a mess no matter what you do, so you might as well let them go crazy with this web blaster. The web fluid (ew) is included in the box, and it slides right onto your hand, so the kids can feel just like Tobey Maguire.