Don’t get me wrong, I love being a Toys R Us toyologist. I absolutely love it!!! It was just great knowing that we came back from holiday there was going to be a Pandora’s Box of toy magic waiting for us. In fact, when we got home we couldn’t find it, and so, I assumed it hadn’t arrived, until my neighbour revealed that it had been squatting in her garage – hurrah! The Grenade was beside himself. He is still, gleefully enthusiastic about the prospect of new toys. There, thankfully, is no nonchalence on his part regarding the whole honour of his noble Toys R Us selection. (Despite the fact that I have clearly already ruined him by spoiling him beyond belief. I can’t help it. I am addicted to making him happy. In a Victorian, rule him with a rod of steel, kind of happy way, of course!)
Obviously, like all good product whores there’s a price to pay. Toys R Us need a 100,000 people to Like their page before Christmas. If you have kids there will be tons of competitions and giveaways on it, so click here and Like it – please say AMMM sent you. Pimp. Pimp. Pimpity. Pimp.
As you can see from the slideshow the box opening was scrambled through with great excitement. Twister – great! I shall be filming my masked vigilantes trampoline Twister review on Friday, and posting on Sunday, so watch this space. Iggle Piggle – tick. The Menace, who will watch only five programmes on the tellybox – Peppa Pig, Ben and Holly’s Magic Kingdom, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Tigger and Pooh and In The Night Garden absolutely loves her Iggle Piggle. She is snuggled down with him/her/it as I type so it is definitely an absolute winner.
But Pandora’s Box indeed because as The Grenade leapt around the room, screaming “ANT SPHERE, ANT SPHERE!! Woo Hoo!”, my heart sank.
“Oh no – not a frickin’ Ant Sphere!!”
(Dagnamit, I need a geek. If you have just watched the vlog you will note that I am not the technical genius. However, I am so amused by the outcome that I don’t want to delete it and I when I tried to upload it again it was rejected as a duplicate video so I shall just have to write instead what I just spoke.)
Ant Sphere should have a huge neon sign saying ‘ANTS NOT INCLUDED!’ Science was never my strongest subject. Patience was not a gift I was blessed with. I have been in ant farming hell before. When The Grenade was younger, I bought a similar toy under the misguided, naive, Utopian belief that I was combining play, knowledge and science. Little did I know that it would serve to bite me firmly in the bum. In order to populate said farm, you need to go forth and collect the little critters. No easy task, I might add.
Having spent an entire life trying to avoid ants, I found myself trying to find a mass of them and then working out how I was going to coax them into my plastic Chinese take away recepticle, with lid. The Grenade and I identified a nest of ants on the pavement and then set to work trying to capture them. The ants were very keen to avoid capture so began to undertake evasive manoeuvres. After about 20 minutes of not a single ant in our captivity, I decided that we were going to have to try and out flank them with a new tactic so I went inside and got a pencil. The purpose of the pencil was to try and push them by the bottom into the plastic box. This was not very successful as they just walked up the pencil and buggered off. The Grenade at the point had managed to get one on his finger and we put that in the box. The lone ant. Hardly the beginning of a great colony.
After a few more minutes I gave up on the pencil and thought I would try a different tack so went inside the house and collected a straw. This proved to be a more successful capture device as I could poke them with the pencil into the centre of the straw and then blow them into the box. As I opened the box and blew in the ant, the original lone ant then immediately escaped. Eventually, after an hour and half, I had managed to capture and contain around 10 ants.
The ants were then released into the ant farm. Excellent, now educate my child in your ant colony behaviour patterns, you little beasticles, I thought! (Look I am not an antist – I respect their rights really.) However, what I hadn’t realised is that it is imperative that you don’t mix your ant colonies because if they are not from the same town they kill each other. Ah yes, I hear you say, ‘excellent, a fine battle for the child to watch and gain from.’
But no, it’s not like the Ant Chronicles of Narnia! What happens is you go to bed, and in the morning when you wake up, all the little varmits that you spent the best part of two hours shoving up a straw with a pencil and blowing into a box have gone and killed each other. I think we had one hero ant marching through the gel – the lone survivor. It is safe to assume that unless somebody tells me where I can buy me a bag of ants I have to say that I am not loving the Ant Sphere!!!