Monday, April 5, 2010

Mrs. Goodbee’s Interactive Dollhouse (Caring Corners/Learning Curve)

Zoë got a new dollhouse and I have to tell you, it’s been so great since we set it up. She and Josh have been busy playing with it for hours almost every day. We’d gone days without them asking to watch TV or play on the computer --now isn’t that the greatest?
From the website --
Using helpful hints, playful prompts, silly songs, and sound, Mrs. Goodbee Interactive Dollhouse nurtures and inspires positive behavior every day. With twelve adorable rooms to explore and plenty of interactive surprises, there are endless opportunities to practice caring, sharing, and preparing for important, age-appropriate responsibilities.
Two children can play together, as the house unfolds to six rooms on each side--and then folds back for easy storage! Over 400 activities, songs, words, and sounds! Includes girl, baby and doggy.
Watch this 30-sec clip.
I had held off getting a dollhouse for Zoë for a number of reasons. Primarily because with so many toys, I didn’t want to add to the clutter and dollhouses take up a lot of space. Well, Mrs. Goodbee’s Dollhouse is not small –24 inches (h) x 42 inches (w) when opened up, –but the beauty of it is that it “folds” away for easy storage. Folded up, it can be tucked away nicely against the wall (only 14 inches wide and 7.5 inches thick).
Even though I knew that Zoë would be in seventh heaven having her own dollhouse, I held back from getting her one, because whatever toy I get these days will have to be something that both Josh and Zoë could play together. Let me just say how enlightened I was to find that Josh takes as much interest in the dollhouse as Zoë does. This dollhouse can definitely keep both girls and boys occupied for hours.
We had Zoë's friend, L, over for a play date and it was just perfect. The three of them (including Josh) were all playing nicely, without having to fight over which room of the dollhouse to play with. There are plenty of rooms on each side of the dollhouse and 2-4 kids can play comfortably together, without having to crowd around at all.

You can buy Family Packs to add to your dollhouse. There are 12 accessory packs --
  1. Pet Playgroundcollage of family packs
  2. Baking Time
  3. Table Manners
  4. Princess Playdate
  5. Strollin’ with Baby
  6. Helping with Groceries
  7. L’il Miss Poodle
  8. Fix-It Fun
  9. Pajama Party
  10. Family Night
  11. Party Time
  12. A Book at Bedtime

Each accessory pack includes a ‘secret code’ to open up an interactive game on the the Caring Corners website. The accessory packs sell for HK$79.90, HK$119.90, and HK$179.90 for the Small, Medium, and Large Family Packs, respectively.
I just wish that each accessory pack comes with its own container to keep the pieces when playing is done. Also, should you choose to buy different Family Packs at one time, I would suggest that you open the accessory packs one at a time, otherwise it can be overwhelming. We now keep all the various pieces in a separate box. Josh and Zoë’s favorite “scenes” to play out are taking care of the baby (rocking it in its cradle or taking it out for a walk in its stroller), using the washroom (and flushing the toilet –because the toilet makes a real flushing sound!), getting the pets to swing or slide around in the Pet Playground.
I love it that, with the dollhouse, Josh and Zoë act out their scenes and really get into pretend play. Seeing and hearing them do that never fails to bring a smile to my face. I’m tickled with all the stuff they come up with. Sometimes it’s like hearing myself speak when I listen in on them; other times, I just marvel at what they come up with. I guess you could say that the dollhouse entertains me as well! I’m so glad that we have this Mrs. Goodbee’s Interactive Dollhouse –it’s every little girl’s dream dollhouse and best of all, for me, both Josh and Zoë get hours of imaginative play out of it, and I get some ‘me’ time while they’re at it.
Mrs. Goodbee’s Interactive Dollhouse and all its Family Packs are available in Hong Kong through Stepping Stones.