Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Holiday Gift Guide 2017: Your Children Will Love Pretending to be a Farmer Tending to the Black Angus Cows with the Farm World Large Red Barn from Schleich (Review) #AD #IlikeSchleich #schleich

Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored campaign for Schleich. I received compensation for my participation, but my review and opinions are my own.

If you follow my blog, then you have probably seen posts over the years about Schleich toys.  Most recently I shared a post about their Horse Club toy line back in July.  And, today I wanted to share a wonderful new product from Schleich that my girls and I were able to review -- the large farm with black Angus, which retails for around $99 (depending on store you purchase it from).

Moving to CT back in 2007 from MA was the best decision my husband and I made.  We moved out of a busy city into the Quiet Corner of CT.  Even though Putnam, where we live is considered a city, it doesn't feel that way.  Our house is nestled in a quiet part of the city, and we have a large horse farm behind our house, and at the bottom of the hill we another farm.  On any given day we will see horses from the stables being rode, and in the winter months you can look out the window and see a sleigh pulled by the horses.  It really is a beautiful sight to see, and a perfect environment to raise children in.  

Ever since my girls could sit in the wagon, my husband and I would bring them up the hill to see the horses and animals.  They loved feeding the horses carrots and rubbing their heads. And, when we weren't visiting the horse farm behind our house, we would take the girls down the street to visit the cow farm and see the cows being milked, and pick up fresh milk and ice cream.  These farming experiences and living in the quiet farming part of the state helped instill a love of animals, especially farm animals with the girls. And, once the girls are 7+ years old, I will be enrolling them in the local 4H Club. But, in the meantime, the girls are taking in the wonders of farm life by participating in local co-ops held at nearby farms where the girls roll up their sleeves and help take care of the animals on the farm, while learning about the animals at the same. time. This hands on experience has really sparked an interest in my girls to learn more about animals.  Savannah wants to be a veterinarian when she gets older and says in addition to helping domestic animals like cats and dogs, she also wants to be traveling vet and help animals on the farm.  :-) 

Homeschooling my girls give me the opportunity to seek out fun opportunities like animal care on the farm, or farm summer camps -- things that they couldn't do if they were in public school.  I try and find programs and classes on subject matter the girls really show an interest in, so that they can delve into those topics further, and get excited about learning.  Even though we don't have a farm, the girls have gained valuable knowledge about day to day chores when it comes to caring for animals on the farm, and this hands on experience really plays into the imaginative play the girls do at home, when they pull out their various horse and barnyard friends toys, including sets I have reviewed and shared about in the past from the folks at Schleich.  And, now with the Farm World Large Red Barn from Schleich, their imagination is back at it, as they care for black angus cows that come with this wonderful barn playset.

If you own Schleich toys, then you know the amazing quality of this toy line.  The animals figures are all hand painted, and when it comes to playsets like the large red barn, you know the quality of the toy will be exceptional.  

When you purchase the large farm with black Angus, you will find when you open the box that you have to put it together.  

I enlisted the help of my husband to put the barn together the other night.  I timed him...it took him about an hour to put it together.  He said it could have been done quicker, but he was letting the girls help me, and that slowed him down.  

But, once the barn was all ready for play, the girls hopped off the couch and knelt down on the floor in the living to check out this new red barn from Schleich.  All I could hear as I was snapping photos and watching the girls play was "Oh, how cool," "look at this cool feature," and "this is my favorite toy ever."  The girls really were excited to play with the barn and loved how this toy came with pieces including the 2 black Angus (a cow and a calf), a farmer with a wheelbarrow and pitchfork, and even a fence with accessories.  My girls had gathered up their growing collection of Schleich animals including horses and farm helpers, and went to town playing with this fun barn.  

In addition to the farmer and his wheelbarrow and pitchfork, the barn also offers a rope winch that the farmer can use to lift feed up to the hayloft.  The doors and windows to the barn open and shut, and you can remove the two detachable roofs of the barn to gain access t0 the inside stalls.  They have been using the detachable roofs as additional storage barns to house their big green tractors they have, or to shelter animals when they pretend it is raining or a storm is coming through.  There is even a moving massage brush for the cows and calves.  

My youngest daughter thought this was the neatest.  "Who knew cows like massages, Mom?" she said, as she asked Savannah to pretend to be a massage brush and massage her itchy back. :-)

My girls ended up spending a few hours the first night playing with the barn.  And, then next day when they woke, they were quick to choose playing with their new Schleich large red barn over watching television.  This time around, they pretended to be a farmers and drew backdrops to hang up on the couch cushions.  Then, they acted out scenes of daily life on the farm with the animals they had.  They had to feed the animals, clean their "PU" stalls and lay down new straw, and then they headed out to the fields to tend to their crops and check on the other animals they set up to graze in the pastures. 

I loves seeing my girls really get into this barn and the imaginative stories they came up with to act out.  They even asked me to borrow a rubber glove, as they wanted to pretending they were milking the cows.  We had done this as part of school over the summer, when I did a week of "Farm Animals" with them.  First, I printed out a picture of a cow, and then I took a small latex glove and pierced small hole in the finger tips.  Then, I had the girls sit at the table with a disposable baking tray in front of them.  I filled the glove (AKA cow utters) with a little bit of water, and then tied of the glove.  I attached the water-filled udder to the cow picture I had printed on card stock paper, so that it dangled down below their belly.  The girls then pretended to milk the cow by pulling on the udders.  Because of the pin holes I made, the water came squirting out.  This mimicked what it is like when a farmer sits down on the stool and milks a cow by pulling on the udders.  The girls really had a blast with this easy and fun hands on activity that you can do at home.  And, when they started their pretend play after my husband put together the large farm barn with the two cows, my girls both said, we need to do the cow craft and milk them again. :-) 

So, that afternoon after we were done with school, I prepped latex gloves and let the girls take turns holding the cow picture with the udder/glove attached, and the other pulled gently on the udders to milk the cow. When they were done with this, they headed back over to the large red barn from Schleich and continued to their imaginative play.  This time around a new calf was born and the mom had to be cared for in the barn after birth.  The girls really got into this, right down to naming the new baby calf - Sydney, like a cow they visit with at the farm down the street.  This cow is chocolate brown and the farmer told them years ago that this special cow makes chocolate milk.  They believed him at the time, but now that they are older, they know better.  But, it was nice to see them pretending that the two black Angus cows from this playset were magical like Sydney the cow, and could make delicious chocolate milk. :-)

We have only had the large farm barn with accessories for about a week now, but it has become a favorite toy of the girls. They haven't gone a day without playing with it. And, usually when they do, they are there on the floor for a couple hours, pretending and coming up with fun stories about farm life.  That is why I love Schleich toys so much, as they really spark the creative side of kids and get their imaginations going.  Kids really get excited about the toy and figures as they look so lifelike and all the extra bells and whistles of the toys and playsets really make playing with the toys that much more enjoyable and fun. 

My girls couldn't stop talking about how realistic the farm and the stalls looked. And, with the fencing and stall doors that open and shut, it made for a really fun play experience, every time the girls played with the large farm barn.  My husband and I even found ourselves drawn to this wonderful barn and wanted to join in the fun.  We have taken girls laying on the living room carpet with the girls and pretending to be a mooing cow, or the farmer pushing his wheelbarrow around to deliver hay to the animals in their stalls. :-)

This is yet another Schleich toy that will be played with time and again.  My girls have a nice collection of these playsets in the playroom, and whenever they have friends over, or head upstairs to play, these are the toys they gravitate to and have the most fun playing with.

Do you have little ones you go crazy for farm animals or love visiting local farms and walking through the barns checking out the animals?  Then, they will love the large farm barn with black Angus playset available now from Schleich.  To learn more about this large red barn and other fun playsets and figures -- including products from their Farm World, Horse Club and Wild Life lines -- head on over to https://www.schleich-s.com/en/US and browse their amazing selection of toys that will spark your child's imagination each and every time they reach for a Schleich toy or playset.  My girls have found another great playset from Schleich and can't stop raving about it to friends. 

And, you know what, I have to say that out of all the Schleich toys we own, this is by far my favorite, as it really does have amazing detail to the inside of the barn and the moveable pieces bring the barn to life, and gets kids excited about being farmers and taking care of the two black Angus cows that come with the set.

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Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored campaign for Schleich. I received compensation for my participation, but my review and opinions are my own. 

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