Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Holiday Gift Guide -- Brilliant Sky Toys & Books

Allow me to introduce you to Brilliant Sky Toys. In an era where customer service is often a computerized telephone voice or find-me-if-you-can cashier, imagine walking into a specialty shop where the sole mission is to not just assist but delight the shopper! 

That's the true story inside every Brilliant Sky Toys & Books store, an enchanting place where shoppers, toy manufacturers and franchise owners wake up every day ready to play. They've even coined their own annual best of show, the Brilliance Awards, where a handful of specialty toys rise above all others.

One such toy awarded, is reviewed in this post, the fantastic Boogie Board. I think this LED writing tablet is pretty fabulous.

I loved the fact that they recognize and award the best toys! I drew the cat image on my Boogie Board (right) in about 1 minute. With the push of a button I erase it. Even better, there's no pen or stylus to lose. It comes with one, and naturally my children have misplaced it, but you can draw with anything, which makes ties where your fumbling for a pen while holding a phone.. nonexistent  I can draw/write on it, with practically anything. The pictures I drew on it located in this blog review, were drawn with my fingernail!!!

I love this green paperless drawing/writing toy/tool. It could be used for anything, including a grocery shopping list!

 Brilliant Sky has way more than just the Boogie  Board though! Check out their website find even more great toys.

 There isn't enough customer service these days, robots are replacing humans in stores and it's hard to get good service isn't it? I am always so tickled when  a store has such exceptional customer service. It's embarrassing that our society has fallen to the point that is no longer the norm. I know you know what I mean too..
Think about it.. it's holiday shopping time.. your kid has asked "Santa" for that one special gift, and local chain stores.. well try to get some help finding ONE particular store. Chances are even if they stock it, finding someone who isn't rude about having to help (cue the *pointed sighs* that you get when you dare ask for help) or even if that isn't the case, is even the slightest bit knowledgeable about said toy or toy department in general..
It can be frustrating, and that's something to remember when we spend our money places like that.

Service with a smile is an old-school concept that has never lost its appeal and is appreciated by every customer who enters Brilliant Sky. The specialty toy store chain stretches from North Carolina to Colorado with 15 stores in towns like Des Moines, IA; Nashville, TN and Louisville, KY. A 16th store is about to open in Houston, but if your not in that area, see this link for a full store location list  The inviting atmosphere in every shop mimics the philosophy of founders Brent & Sonia Taylor, parents themselves of three growing children.

Seven distinct toys, ideal for preschoolers to tweens, made this year's Brilliance Award list with prices starting at $16.99. Each winner is prominently featured in the colorful 2012 Holiday catalog, and Taylor explains the toy I reviewed: The Boogie Board was selected as a favorite, and I can see why:

           "Boogie Board • $39.99 • Ages 8+
The Boogie Board is a paperless drawing tool that is great for traveling, doodling, games, lists, memos, and diagrams- practically anything! Comes with a stylus, but can also work with the touch of a finger. It's pressure sensitive to create different thicknesses- just like a paper and pen. Erase with the touch of a button and bring it anywhere for countless hours of fun. The sealed 3V watch battery never needs replacing. Measures 8.8 X 5.6 X 1/8''

Taylor bought it because: “This is more than just a toy - we are selling them to adults almost as much as kids. A great blend of technology, engagement, and creative expression.”   "

We also love it Taylor!!! I want to nominate this and other special companies and products for my #holidayGiftGuide, which will be out December 1st!!! Look for it, here on Locomotion of Expressions.
 This review is a double win*win, since the toy is exceptional and the company selling it is also extraordinary. I certainly do recommend both Brilliant Sky and Boogie Board for your  Holiday Purchases.

And although only seven toys captured this year's Brilliance Award, the toy chain's owners selected three other specialty toys as top choices. These clever games and toys also deserve to find their way into homes with inquisitive youngsters.

  1. Boogie Board • (Above)
  2. Loopdeedoo $34.99 • Ages 8+
  3. Magic Moves Electronic Wand • $19.99 • Ages 3+
  4. Suspend Game • $16.99 • Ages 8+
  5. Tobbles • $24.99 • Ages 2+
  6. Candy Cottage • $34.99 • All Ages   (I thought this one would be neat, and almost asked to review it, instead of the Boogie Board)
  7. Neurosmith’s Musical Touch • $24.99 • Ages 3+
  8. Anti Virus • $20.99 • Ages 7+
  9. Kendama Pro • $19.99 • Ages 8+
  10. Master Kitz • $29.99 • Ages 4+
For consumers not lucky enough to live near one of their stores, an online shop is open 24/7 where gift-wrap is free every day! Click on www.BrilliantSkyToys.com to make up a wish list or handle all your holiday shopping while still in your pajamas! Poke around the website and discover Brent's Blog about the toy industry and what's new and cool.

Need another step to make shopping a pleasure? Would you believe there's an app for that? Try their iPhone app!!

No other toy store chain can brag, "We've put in the time and done the homework to establish partnerships with over 600 toy manufacturers from around the world so we are confident we can find what you're looking for."

The first Brilliant Sky Toys & Books® was founded in 2002 in Lansing, Michigan with the singular goal of being the finest upscale specialty toy store in America. Based on the belief that the right playthings give children a gateway to physical, emotional and cognitive development Brilliant Sky Toys & Books provides the highest quality products in an atmosphere that is both active and interactive. Its unique aesthetic approach is vibrant yet warm, exciting yet comforting and exploratory yet safe. From rich colors and woods to low sightlines and custom fixtures the Brilliant Sky sensory experience is unlike any other. Now based in Okemos, Michigan and featuring more than 10,000 high-quality specialty products, Brilliant Sky Toys & Books is truly the place where everyone can find their way to play. Visit them at www.brilliantskytoys.com.

This store is located in Nashville, TN

Their Facebook page is: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/okemostoys if you’d like to follow Taylor’s own store and company news!

 Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” The opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own. Your experience with the product may differ from mine. The sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment and will be shipping the winner(s) their prize(s). For more information read my rules/disclosure policy.


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