Even though it was a lot of work, last summer I held a garage sale that was very necessary around here. Where does all of this stuff come from? How have we managed to accumulate so many things that have no use or that my kids have absolutely no need for?
One main box that I was glad to put out on the driveway was filled with the junkiest, cheapest stuffed animals. Whether they were won from fairs and carnivals or picked up as an afterthought at the store, they were ones that my kids never played with or loved - they just never made the cut.
Instead, they seem to have a sixth sense for plush pals that are truly made to last. The ones that have style and quality and are just... better. And the name that defines the best of the best stuffed animals is none other than North American Bear Company.
A family-owned and operated company started 30 years ago, North American Bear Company was formed out of the desire of a mother looking for the perfect teddy bear for her son (now that's what I call a dedicated mom). Today, their small, tight-knit staff consists mainly of parents who know and love the wide variety of products just as much as their customers - and who can blame them?
With everything from dolls to teddy bears to cuddly monsters, there is an option for both boys and girls of just about any age and interest. And North American Bear Co. doesn't just design adorable stuffed animals, they also have entire categories of fun Accessories or items for Dress-Up that are just the right combination of entertaining and endearing.
We set out to discover just how much fun we could have with these unique items when North American Bear Co's Handbag Goldfish and Tutu Tulle Kit arrived and brightened our day.
Brightly colored and silky soft, the Handbag Goldfish was confiscated immediately by Big Sister E as soon as she laid eyes on it. I did talk her into sharing it with Little Sister B for a while... but later on found that she had managed to stash it away in her room for even more time to herself.
Although I have to admit, even after I brought this plush fish back out to be shared, I could understand why she wanted to spend a little extra time with it.
With its sweet face and fins, convenient carry handles and easy-to-open zippered top (covering quite a large fully-lined compartment inside), this is one goldfish that can be both a toy and a purse at the same time. Measuring approximately 13" long, this isn't a tiny bag but rather almost large enough to be a cozy pillow as well. How many purses can do that?
From small treasures to important scraps of paper, both girls have loved using this unique handbag for carrying just about anything that is needed on a daily basis or for an imaginary adventure.
And what's the perfect outfit to wear when going on one of those adventures? Well, your very own custom tutu, of course.
Available in pink or purple, North American Bear Co's Tutu Tulle Kit has everything you need to not only wear a classic dress-up item, but to design it yourself. Opening up the package, we found the multi-layered tutu, a large tube of glitter glue, a package of shiny sequins, nine fabric flowers, thick paper templates to be used to create even more decorations and a satin bow to finish the look (that Little Sister B confiscated right out of the bag and was never to be seen again).
The concept of this kit is completely fun yet very simple: the lucky little girl creates her own decorations using the included supplies (or any additional ones that are added) and drops them down into the pocket-type layers of the tutu itself. The result is a completely personalized and easily changeable item that can be worn for pretend play, ballet or just any time that a tutu is an outfit's perfect finishing touch.
Being that Big Sister E is a huge fan of both arts & crafts and dress-up, this tutu was the perfect combination to entertain her from beginning to end. She started by decorating the fabric flowers, as well as some of the paper templates, with the glitter, sequins and crayons.
After they dried, it was easy to slide each piece into the openings near the top of the tutu and letting them fall throughout the layers. All that was left was to use the adjustable waistband and wrap this tutu around a 16" - 27" waist of the little ballerina waiting nearby.
I really like being able to open and close the waistband this way so that kids don't have to step in and out of the tutu as they usually do. Plus, even though this kit is recommended for ages 3+ that doesn't mean that a certain younger dress-up fan around here doesn't get to also enjoy the fun that this tutu has brought...
From classic and traditional to modern and unique, North American Bear Company has a huge collection of high quality, well-crafted items that would make great gifts for newborns through big kids. Heck, I think I need a Pink Tutu Tulle Kit of my own! With reasonable prices and oh-so-cute features, this is one company that knows what makes parents and kids happy.
And, thanks to their generosity, one person will get to pick their favorite bear or monster for the child in their life, because...
One lucky person will win their choice of Classic Bears or My Own Monsters (up to $30) from North American Bear Company!
To enter to win: Visit North American Bear Company and tell me which of their adorable items is your favorite.
Extra Entries (available after the mandatory entry above is completed; please leave a separate comment for each entry in order for them to be counted).
1 Extra Entry (per method) if you follow North American Bear Company on Twitter and/or Like them on Facebook.
1 Extra Entry (per giveaway entered) - Enter any (or all) of the giveaways running on Thanks, Mail Carrier for the duration of this giveaway.
1 Extra Entry if you follow me on Twitter and tweet about this giveaway by copying and pasting the tweet below and leaving me the link. Tweet daily for an extra entry every day!
WIN a North American Bear Co Classic Bear or My Own Monster (ARV $30) from @NABearCo! #thxmailcarrier http://bit.ly/ejuFKD #giveaway #win
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Giveaway will end on January 21st at 11:59pm CST. Do me the favor of leaving an email address or making absolutely sure it is visible in your profile, I have to have a way to contact the winner. The winner will be chosen by random.org and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to contact me or respond to notification or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is open worldwide! If you're reading this, you can enter!
A big thank you to North American Bear Company for providing a Tutu Tulle Kit and Handbag Goldfish for me to review as well as the choice of Classic Bears or My Own Monsters for one lucky giveaway winner. The opinions shared are my own and honest and if you really need to see more, click here to see how I roll.