Thursday, August 7, 2008

Wheely Bug, another foot-powered favorite

Last week on that's hot! thursday I posted about the LIKEaBIKE, a foot-powered bike that is G's current chosen mode of transportation...outdoors. When it comes to going from living room to kitchen he prefers his Wheely Bug, which I reviewed in January 2007.

At the time of the review George was almost 1 1/2 and not quite old enough to fully enjoy all the Wheely Bug had to offer, but he has more than made up for it in the past year. G and his cushy bug on wheels has logged more miles from the front door to kitchen sink than last year's NASCAR winner. He used to simply roll forward and backward but his skills have recently improved to include twisting, turning and even sliding sideways (I think the official term is "coasting").

Yes, the sound of wheels on tile gets old rather quickly but the sight of him going back and forth on that thing makes me smile. That boy is now an expert at dodging obstacles (i.e. his little sister) and can stop his Wheely Bug on a dime. If he runs into the kitchen cupboards Mom gives both him and the Wheely Bug a timeout and then she shows G exactly where he's chipped the paint off the cabinets...again.

The Wheely Bug has won the "Best Australian Toy ITSA Quality Toy Awards for five out of the past seven years along with numerous other prestigious toy awards. It encourages gross motor skills "while having heaps of fun" and the designs are perfect for girls and boys. I love that it's easy to clean, nicely padded, and is surprisingly light. And its rollers, or casters if you want to get scientific, are multi-directional so this little bug goes every which way (kind of like the real thing). You can view photos of three Wheely Bug designs (bee, cow, ladybug) and read detailed information here. These little bugs even come in two sizes, small (ages 1.5+) and large (ages 3+).

Though our Wheely Bug is kept indoors it could easily handle some light outdoor use. At under $80 it makes the perfect birthday gift. Just make sure you have a good stretch of solid flooring and earplugs. --Emily

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