01 November 2010

Down To Earth Toys Review and another Great Giveaway!!!

One of my favourite places in the world is Sandpoint, Idaho, and one of my favourite things about Sandpoint is that when I shop there, for food, fabric, clothes, and canning jars from the local hardware store, I know who I'm buying from.  I buy milk from Rhiannon, I get my fabric at Ben Franklin's and the same ornery old lady has cut it for years, Mr. Merwin, who owns Merwin's True Value, lives two doors down from our cabin, the local grocery store lets me take my groceries home when I forget my credit card because they trust I'll come back the next morning to pay. There is something to be said for small town America!

Not many of us have the pleasure of living in a town of 6000. However, each of us can do our part to support our local shop owners, farmers and small businesses. We can put our money into the homes of real people who provide real service and quality goods, rather than padding the pockets of large corporations with shady business practices and substandard products.

One of my favourite 'local' toy shops is Down To Earth Toys.  I say 'local' because while I lived in Michigan, Down To Earth Toys was local. It is run by my good friend Carrin, from her home, and I can vouch for her being one of the most socially conscious people I know.  She hand picks each of her items, ensuring that they are quality, safe and built through fair labor practices. Her quality control board consists of her sweet four-year old boy and his friends, who do a fine job of making sure each of the toys she supplies is kid worthy!

First of all, let me talk about her baby toys. Last year for Chirstmas we bought Silas this wonderful wooden bell rattle.  Made in Illinois of natural wood, it is absolutely beautiful.  The bell in it provides a simple melodic chime without it being a noise maker.  Silas's tiny fingers could grasp it at four months through the rungs around the bell, and now he can firmly hold the base.  It is an absolute constant in our diaper bag!

For older children Down To Earth Toys has a myriad of natural and organic toys that are not only fun and promote creativity, but will also be around long enough to be played with by your grandchildren.  We purchased this sorting block for Eli last year, and while I knew it would be fun for him, I was blown away by how beautiful it is.  It is one toy I don't feel I have to hide away in a toy chest to have my room look good.

There are millions of toys out there you could choose to buy this season, but why not choose to be responsible in your choices?  Every item from Down To Earth Toys is safe, non-toxic and provided through fair labour practices.  While she could be looking for ways to make the most possible money, regardless of the impact, Carrin instead is looking for ways to improve the future for our children.  Check out her website
and read about the choices she is making and decide what choices you can make this year for your children, your country and your world!

This week marks the middle of my Thanksgiving to Thanksgiving giveaways.  Carrin, from Down To Earth Toys, has generously agreed to sponsor this week's giveaway!  She has offered a great little item from her shop, showing that you don't have to spend a fortune to buy quality, responsible toys this season, a wonderful elastic powered paddle boat.
One lucky follower will win the paddle boat next Sunday night!  The rules are simple:

2. You must comment on this post to enter.

And, there are a few things you can do to earn extra entries this week (leave a separate comment for each):
3. Comment on any other posts during the week of the giveaway (Monday to Sunday.)
4. Commenting on this post letting me know that you  "Like" Down To Earth Toys on Facebook
5. Comment on Down To Earth Toys on Facebook thanking Carrin for the giveaway.
6. Visit Down To Earth Toys, and come back here to tell me which item you like best or something about her shop that you LOVE!

Good luck, all, and happy commenting!!!


  1. I love this giveaway! You are truely amazing! And so is Down to earth toys!

  2. those wooden toys really are nice.

  3. i have been a follower from the beginning. does this giveaway have a grandfather clause? (tyler still likes bath toys...)

  4. i really really "like" down to earth toys, especially on facebook!

  5. i LOVE the 1st camera and the sewing machine. i will take note for my babies one day.

  6. i don't know if i was supposed to say here that i commented on fb or not, but what the heck. i commented! i really do think this company is cool!

  7. I like them on facebook and I love them for all my shopping needs from now on...and now for a sad story. I totally forgot about my sugar sprite fairy toy to leave for Ben this morning until the last minute on saturday so I had to run to toys R us and bought some plastic piece of crap from china. Jon put it together this morning for him and 20 minutes later he was sobbing because it was in ten pieces. Jon is out now trying to get modeling glue to fix the stupid thing. Blah. I want to just throw it out. I love high quality toys especially natural wood, most of our toys fall into this category and I have trouble finding good ones with reasonable shipping charges! I love etsy but it is hard to browse for hours on there to find exactly what you are looking for...until now!!!
    I love the bath toys and the classic games. I REALLY want one of the kitchen helpers perch things...Ben falls off his stool at least three times a week! Too bad they are out of stock right now.

  8. I hate those bright plastic toys but usually can't afford the nice wooden ones. I would love this cute paddle boat.

  9. I like the dolls. I would love to get one for Mari. I can't decide which one!

  10. Lovely! Thanks for the chance.

    I follow on gfc

  11. The Pile of People Puzzle looks like fun.

  12. I love all the kitchen stuff and I know that Ruby would too!
    But to be honest- I pretty much love it all...

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