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Posts Tagged ‘Under $20

Earlier this year, the Today show ran a segment on bath toys in their series “Secret Filth Exposed.” Bath squirters – a perennial favorite – were shown to have high levels of bacteria, caked absolutely black on the insides with “sky high counts of fecal bacteria like e-Coli and strep.”

We cut one open in disbelief – yep.  Disgusting.  Really wish we hadn’t seen that.  Instant toss.  But what now?  Measuring cups and containers are good fun, but they just don’t have the personality of those little squirts.

Dano2 Ducki

Photo Credit: http://www.dano2.com

There are a few rubber duckies on the market that are one-piece, without squirt holes.  But a quick search yielded a terrific find – a rubber ducky who’s not only hygienic, but also PVC-, Phthalate- and BPA-free!  Ducki from Dano2 solves the hygiene problem with a pop-out bottom – it can be thoroughly cleaned and dried, inside and out.

Ducki retails for just $8, and is available in four bathtastic colors: citrus, raspberry, caribbean and mint.  His sassy upturned beak and tail make for great teething, too.

Some kids like to wear shoes, others just socks, still others run barefoot every chance they get.  And most of the time, we are happy to indulge them.

At daycare or preschool, though, there’s often a footwear requirement – usually the ambiguous term “slippers” – or socks at the barest minimum.  And this makes sense to us parents – hard flooring can be cold in winter, slippery for foot races, and downright unsanitary in the potty.

Enter, Bical Grippers – the sock with a shoe attached!  Bical offers a snug-fitting performance sock with a fiercely grippy full-length rubber sole.  This alone would be the perfect toddler “shoe” but they go a step further with colors and patterns ranging from simply cute to absolutely badass.

Our shoe-shedding toddler pulled these on the moment they arrived, and had them wrestled off at bedtime.  She wore them the full day at preschool, even waiting patiently to don her “piggies” before racing off for the indoor slide.

Bicals retail for around $22.00 ($24.99 for the knee-high version) but there are a number of great stores offering them for less.

Online deal (updated 5/22/10): BestDressedTot.com – currently on sale from $15.50 on up.

Local steal: Bella Stella in NE Portland regularly stocks new Bicals for around $16.

Be careful buying Bical second hand on eBay, since the washing instructions are very specific and you’ll want to inspect them pretty closely for snags from the grippers.

Also: Bicals run almost a full size *small* so definitely size up to buy a little growing room.

Toddlers are famously picky eaters.  Okay let’s face it – toddlers are picky, period.

But if there’s one thing they seem to universally love, it’s animals.  So if your little monkey needs some extra encouragement at mealtime, consider packing his PB&J into one of these kool & kid-friendly lunch bags.

Dabbawalla’s Penguin Backpack is made of insulating neoprene, and is roomy enough to play double-duty with snacks and a few small essentials.  It’s also supremely food safe, using only Oeko-Tex 100 certified dyes.  Available at Oompa Toys for $39.99.

Skip Hop’s Zoo Lunchies are insulated, BPA- Phtalate- and PVC-free – – in other words, a safe and healthy place for food.  The new owl design is a hoot, and there’s a set of matching backpacks too.  Pick one up for just $13 at skiphop.com – and through 5/5, you can use code: MOM for free shipping (offer extended).

Dabbawalla Penguin Oompa Toys

Photo Credit: http://www.oompa.com

Oompa Dabbawalla Penguin Open

Photo Credit: http://www.oompa.com

Kipiis Bib Clips

Photo Credit: amazon.com

There’s something really wonderful about a simple product idea executed elegantly for a nice low price.  Better still if it’s something you use every day.

I first bought Kipiis Bib Clips years ago to have in my diaper bag instead of the cloth bibs I’d inevitably forget to wash or restock.  I’d use them occasionally this way, but recently discovered their true calling: BREAKFAST.  Baby cereal and yogurt are the morning routine in our house, and with our toddler feeding herself, I was burning through bibs like never before.  One morning I pulled out the bib clips and a paper towel, and we haven’t looked back.

Buy on Amazon.com for $12.

In PDX at New Seasons Market.



  • JHeff: I have read a good number of comments about most users of the boba not really ever using the foot rests. Looking at the videos I've seen, the back on
  • Mama GaGa: Oh, boo! Thanks for the manufacturing update - I will make note in the post. Cheers - MG
  • Cathy: I know this is a couple years old but I ran across this post and was so excited when you said the Boba was made in America - a big selling point for m

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