But when it comes to shopping and stocking stuffing, I always find myself wanting just a little more.
More than the fads or the "in" things, I want a store that offers high quality, entertaining, educational, unique items that not only help teach, but are sure to be a favorite in just about any household for years to come.
Add in the possibility of avoiding long lines and crabby crowds and being able to shop whenever and wherever is convenient for me, and you've got the amazing catalog and collection found from Museum Tour.
Founded on the belief that a child will want to learn if presented with toys that have been created with both education and fun in mind, Museum Tour (available as a catalog and website) is the brainchild of a former museum director.
With a wide array of award-winning educational products that extend the museum experience into the home, Museum Tour makes it possible to create enjoyable learning opportunities for children beyond the museum and science center walls.
It's not often that you arrive at a website and are met with such a great line of museum store-quality gifts that are sure to stimulate curiosity, provide aesthetic pleasure and enhance the joy of learning!
Whether your shopping list includes an interest in chemistry, nature, super heroes, electronics, animals, technology or many more, once you start browsing MuseumTour.com, you'll be amazed at the variety of options available and the way that they can help hone in on the learning style of each child.
But... where to begin?
I love the way that MuseumTour.com allows visitors to shop for each child by age or grade from preschool to high school (there is also an adult section for multi-generations to enjoy together or solo), but there are so many enticing products that it can be difficult to select the best of the best to provide hands-on museum learning right at home.
Fortunately, this holiday season, Museum Tour has solved that problem as well. By taking recommendations from curators from zoos, aquariums and science centers, they have brought together a list of the Top 10 Best Bets for Holiday Gift Giving — the perfect place to start your Hanukkah and Christmas shopping!
This great list includes:
- Kids Utensils Set (available in Construction or Garden Fairy themes)
- Belly Bump Jr
- Megalodon Tooth Specimen
- Art Tablet
- Living Sands
- Chaos Tower
- Candy Chemistry
- Enchantmints Jewelry Boxes (available in Horse, Unicorn or Ballerina styles)
- Magformers Carnival Set
- Hexbug Nano Zipline Starter Set
- Magic Science
- Aquarellum Junior Paint Sets
- Ultimate Volcano Science Kit
- Toss Games (including Tac Tic Toss and Target Toss)
- Twin Gyroscopes and Strings
- Anteater Bug Vacuum
- Doodling Robot
- Solar Rover
- The Duct Tape Book
And, while I have no doubt that my family would have had a good time with just about all of these suggestions, when the Chaos Tower arrived, I was looking forward to seeing just what kind of scientific entertainment and learning this ingenious kinetic ball system was going to provide for us.
I'll admit that after I had all 602 pieces of this set out of the packaging, I was slightly overwhelmed.
Combining physics with construction, this award-winning, amazing building tower is designed for ages 8 and up, so I had faith that the four of us would be able to work together to get it assembled...right?
Fortunately, as we began connecting pieces from one to the next, it became clear to me why Museum Tower would recommend the Chaos Tower.
Stated clearly on their website, their goal is "to make sure your child is creating while having fun, building as they play, experimenting while they learn and interacting while being involved with you, as their parents." Which is 100% what the Chaos Tower is all about!
My children definitely could not have set this full tower up on their own, but it provided such a wonderful activity for our family to do together and both of the girls had a blast being a part of the process and discovering how all of the parts slowly came together to turn into one incredibly magnificent toy.
I have never seen anything like the Chaos Tower and it has attracted comments, questions and compliments from every person (adults and children) that has visited our home since we completed the construction. It truly does provide the wonder and awe that is typically found when visiting a museum!
When it comes to finding something not to love about Museum Tour, my mind draws a blank. Their unique, educational, innovative gifts allow kids to express themselves through play while encouraging curiosity, imagination and critical thinking — and they really do make learning fun! I don't remember particularly enjoying learning about physics when I was young, but I sure find it fascinating now that I can watch it in action right here in my living room!
This holiday season and beyond, head over to MuseumTour.com (and connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest) for all of your gift-giving needs and take advantage of their Gift Finder and various other tools that help families find just the right gift for every occasion. Don't just give your child a toy, give them an experience!
Plus, thanks to their generosity, one person will soon be able to shop for a high quality, educational and entertaining gift as well, because...
One lucky person will win a $30 gift certificate to MuseumTour.com!
A big thank you to Museum Tour for providing a Chaos Tower for me to review as well as a $30 gift certificate 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.