- Faith and Hope (in God, community, and in positive change)
- Compassion, Philanthropy, Sympathy
- Social & Environmental Responsibility
- Creativity, Color, & Imagination
- Don't share bodily bi-products (aka boogies), impress others with your flatulence skills, or burp your ABC's in public (oh yes, my kids have skills :) & :\ <~~ Okay, I added this for fun but really..
|(oh yea! Home brewed Starbucks Latin America Breakfast blend w Mint Truffle cream and yes, I already drank most of it in this picture <3)|
If you are like me you both love & dread Christmas time because of gift giving. Before you get frazzled on that comment, I LOVE giving gifts and I tend to lean towards handmade because so few commercial companies seem to be producing thoughtful & thought provoking, imaginative gifts that are environmentally responsible, give back to society, and are interesting. I hate just buying a toy to have a box under the tree that is probably going to be abandoned or donated to Goodwill in a month or so (Don't get me wrong, I love donating & shopping at Goodwill). We are a one income (which is a low one) family of 5 and I need every cent to count. I want things to be loved, carried around, shared, and most of all to contribute to their lives in a positive way. I want things to last because I believe in passing things down both to my other children and other families (only if they're in great shape).
When I discovered B. I was just window shopping the toy aisles of Target to kill some time between appointments. I was first drawn to the colors because I absolutely love rich, vibrant, bright & bold colors (lead free by the way!!). So I picked up the box of the Hellophone and checked it out. I was immediately impressed for a few reasons (To get the "hard facts" on all of these, I've included links, please check them out <3):
- The packaging easily folded out to an adorable gift box with mod/retro type printing in gorgeous colors that you can purchase and immediately "wrap" on the way out of the store to the car (saved me buying those bags I just can't get into and the tissue paper I have 17 packs of but can never find!)
- All of the packaging is printed with soy based inks and 100% recycled & recyclable. Some of the toys even come in pretty reusable bags that are compostable.
- The phone itself was attractive, had fun buttons and sounds and I could record personal messages on it.
- Each purchase of a B. product donates 10 cents of every toy purchased to Free The Children. These days I know ten cents seems like a ridiculous amount to make a change, but dimes add up quickly and with dedication and resourcefulness, dimes become opportunities, dreams, & miracles.
- The B. company itself believes highly in creativity and individuality, encouraging anyone reading packaging to B. generous, B. powerful, B. curious, B. poetic, B. open, B. free, B. you (What more could you wish for your child?!)
Fish & Splish: Hands down, the most creative and practical bath toy I have ever saw. The boat with a fisherman acts as a storage for all the goodies inside. This toy is sooooo good for helping little ones develop motor skills because it comes with a little fishing pole that helps catch fish (great when you're distracting them from the fact that you are washing their hair) and the toys have purposes like the Octopus nail brush and the nesting cups that can be used to rinse hair and just have bath time fun.
|See what I mean?! Don't you want to be trending Pop-Arty too?|
My daughter has saved every little "pretty" she saw on the packaging and they still play with it. What they allowed me to recycle, I threw in the recyclables bin feeling awesome that it wasn't ending up in the landfill. I got the chance to talk to my kids about Free The Children and compassion for others, about how God has blessed us and why every day, I pray that He will continue to bless us so that we may in turn, bless others, not for self-gain. We talked about how we have responsibilities to recycle and be good to our planet so that those after us can enjoy a healthier, cleaner life and how by purchasing things from places and companies with the philosophies of B. and sharing that with others that we are making a positive change, planting seeds of purpose within those we meet who hopefully, will also plant seeds within others they meet branching into a beautiful chain reaction. I always, always say, it only takes one person to start a revolution, one kindness, one understanding at a time, an action that is like a pebble in the water, makes a splash and ripples out to the world, sharing with all it reaches. Be that person, take responsibility for that random kindness, you are more powerful than you realize.
Don't get me wrong here, my kids are 7, 4, & 21 months now. I didn't explain these things in the exact words that I am using with you, but in ways that they could understand and they did. When they get birthday gifts or have a little spending money, they often want to donate it to a mission and buy something small for themselves. They ask if every scrap of everything is recyclable and if it isn't, they want to make something interesting out of it to prolong it's lifespan.
They understand that there are children out there who were not born with the same opportunities, the same situation, and my 7 y/o daughter wants to do mission work and uplift these children, showing them love. I could go on forever (bless your hearts LOL I bet some of you feel I have already!) about B. and everything they are and stand for. I plan on sharing more about them routinely in the future because this company is constantly doing something beautiful, producing more interesting toys, and making waves.
Please stop by their website and spend time on their Toys page, the B.log, the Quotes page (you can design & make your own but you will LOVE reading them! It's one of my favorite parts of the packaging and the website), and the Story of how it all began. I promise you, you will close out the page feeling inspired, ready to make the world a more colorful, positive, and creative place. Want to know more? Drop by the FAQ page where everything is readily available and written out, or even contact them. B. also have a Facebook and a Twitter. No robotic machines or form letters with this company.
|Parum Pum Pum (Look familiar? B. used to produce toys licensed by Parents magazine,||)|