Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Guidecraft Crystal Bead & Shimmering Water Blocks {Review}

Guidecraft MomsThere is something so incredibly classic and simple and wonderful about wooden blocks. They have the ability to spark a child's imagination in endless ways time and time again - the only limit on the towers, castles, houses, cars, and more that can be constructed seem to be the amount of time that there is to play!

So how to do you take a toy that is already near-perfect and make it better? By having Guidecraft, already known for their quality and innovation, turn the traditional tan wooden blocks into something colorful and amazing with their Crystal Bead Blocks and Shimmering Water Blocks.

As soon as we pulled out Guidecraft's Bead Blocks and Water Blocks, the oohs and aahs began. After all the bright colors and sounds were evident still in the package!

With eight blocks per package (four rectangle and four half circle), the red, yellow, green, and blue colors stand out immediately. The strong, hardwood frame is similar to traditional blocks and feels smooth and comfortable in any size hands, particularly with the addition of the soft, rounded edges that Guidecraft has perfected.

But one look and the unique aspect of these wooden blocks is blatantly apparent: the acrylic centers are filled with either plastic beads or a mix of water and metal flakes. The result? A very cool set of blocks that makes a fun clinking sound as the beads roll back and forth or have a shimmering, wave-like look when the sparkly water drifts around.

Who wouldn't want to stack and balance things that are just so darn pretty to look at?

Both Big Sister E and Little Sister B realized right away that as well as being able to easily build with these blocks, they were fun to peek through... well as building structures both large and small (the large ones in particular have been awfully impressive).

As well as enjoying the sights of the sparkling water and the sounds of shaking beads while building, these blocks have inspired various other adventures to come from them.

By turning the blocks on their sides, Big Sister E has declared the Bead Blocks to be gardens for animals to eat from and the Water Blocks to be swimming pools. Not only does she build a house, but then the inhabitants are able to eat and swim - even better!

All in all, we love Guidecraft's Crystal Bead Blocks and Shimmering Water Blocks. They are high quality (both the wood and the acrylic centers are extremely durable and strong), well-constructed, entertaining, educational and a unique twist to traditional wooden blocks. Every kid needs a set of blocks to inspire creativity and learning and these do all of that plus more!

Big Sister E has declared the Bead Blocks as her favorite while Little Sister B voted for the Water Blocks, but the consensus has definitely been positive for them both. I have no doubt that we will be adding the beauty of color to our building blocks for years to come!

Retailing for $32 each, the Crystal Bead Blocks and the Shimmering Water Blocks are available directly from Guidecraft on their website, through the shopping link of the Guidecraft Facebook page, or on Amazon for around 20% less (the Crystal Bead Blocks are found here and the Shimmering Water Blocks are found here).

Plus, being that this is an awesome Guidecraft Moms review, that means there is a giveaway for these great toys as well! This month it is being held at Homeschool Creations, but only until July 25th, so head over right away and enter to win!

(I was provided with Crystal Bead Blocks and Shimmering Water Blocks to help facilitate this review as part of my participation as a Guidecraft Mom. I was not compensated or enticed or to do this review in any way and this post is solely my honest opinion of this website, the products and how much we love them.)