Monday, October 30, 2017

Holiday Gift Guide - Starpath Dolls

Growing up, we had a tradition of opening up one gift Christmas Eve night. We were quite poor growing up and did not usually have many gifts. While it did make one less to open Christmas morning, it did extend the excitement, giving us an extra day to feel festive and excited.

Now that I have my own family. I have kept this tradition. Thankfully, my children have never know the kind of struggle that my siblings and I remember. But I still love the idea of having a special moment on Christmas Eve. It is a little more intimate. We always have a lot of gifts on Christmas morning and it can be hard for everyone to stop and watch others open theirs. So the one each on Christmas Eve is where that really happens.

When I first started doing it, I never really had a plan, just as my parents didn't. It was just one gift that was not too "big" that they thought we would like, and I followed suit. But doing this at night, left little time to actually use the gift, and seemed to detract from the experience. That's why I decided to make the Christmas Eve gift a book (for the kids) and a book or movie for the adults, something that could be fully enjoyed before bed.

My kids love to read, but getting a special book as a gift always creates an even bigger desire to read. They love to show their books off and read (or attempt to read) them to each other and to us. It is just so much fun for all of us. My favorite books for this are personalized books. I started that 2 years ago, and my kids adore them. Everyone who has seen them love it.

So this year, I knew that Starpath Dolls would be perfect for my daughter. I know, I just went on and on about books and now I am talking about dolls. While I am often that scatterbrained, I do have a reason. Starpath Dolls each come with a personalized e-book. They even have the option to choose a physical (paperback) copy for $20.

You add the child's name, school, family's names and so on, and the story is personal to her (or him; dolls can be great for boys too.) We chose A Fairy Tale Gone Wrong (e-book). It is such a cute story, and my daughter loves it. Of course, being the mother hen that she thinks she is, she may have loved the doll just a bit more. We chose Morning Star. She is beautiful.

My son loves her too. Like I said, dolls are great for boys as well. With his autism, he will not lead imaginative play as much, but he loves to watch his sister play, and join in when it suits him. Like she will be taking Morning Star to school, and he will chime in with what he thinks she will do at school. "She has art class today." Or something like that. If she "cries" he will try to figure out what's wrong. It very sweet. It ends up with my daughter trying to "mother" her brother along with the doll, but they have fun.

As for the doll itself, it is very high quality. It is as nice as any other 18" doll on the market, even the ones that cost much more. She is beautiful, with lovely silky hair, that my daughter loves to brush and have me help her style. Her outfit is darling. My daughter likes to remove it for "bath time", though she has a soft body and can't actually be bathed.

This is a doll that will truly be loved and will last for many years. I foresee that even when my daughter outgrows her, she will still be in great shape to pass along to a new loving home. This would be great for passing down to younger siblings.

If you do the Christmas Eve book tradition too, as I have seen many people do, I think that Starpath Dolls and books would be a great variation. The book could be the Christmas Eve gift, and how exciting it would be to get the doll on Christmas morning.

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