Imagine being in an enormous room filled with the latest toys – but no children. Actually make that one child, and he's the offspring of X Factor finalist Stacey Solomon.
That was the slightly surreal sight that greeted your ParentDish correspondent a few days ago when I visited Toy Fair 2010. This is a trade event to showcase the latest toys that our kids can look forward to this year. I went along because... well, I'm just a bit nosy about that sort of thing.
I can report that Stacey seemed very nice, looking super glam in mummy chic cardie, Ugg boots and BIG hair. Really very, very big hair. Her son Zach was amazingly well behaved, considering that he was virtually the only child surrounded by wall to wall toys. He waited patiently whilst his mum posed for photographers and didn't have the kind of meltdown you'd expect from most toddlers in that situation. Zach is clearly a little star already.
And what about the toys? Here are some of the highlights your children may be playing with later in the year:
The toys I liked included:
- Punk GoGo Hamsters
They're back, they've got cool haircuts and hopefully enough stock to satisfy demand
- New Playmobil
Fans of these tiny figures will love the new range, which includes a school room, puppet theatre and ghost pirates.
- Meercat family from Sylvanian Families
Not the one from the advert, but his close relatives are coming to live in Sylvania and they are super, super cute. Also there's a lovely windmill coming for them to live in too.
- Cicciobello Tinkle Time dolls
Watch out for this cheeky little baby boy doll from Flair – he not only wets his nappy, he can pee a whole metre across the room! Impressive.
Plenty of themed mini digital cameras and MP3 players around this year, decked out in all your children's favourite characters, including Ben 10 and Hello Kitty.
- Crafty Kids
If you'd rather go back to basics, check out these puppet and craft kits, which are simple but highly imaginative.
- Monty Python Toys
I suspect these are aimed more at adults, and could be causing controversy later in the year with their "Stone the Heretic" skittle set.
- Super scooters
Now that pretty much every kid has got a scooter, the new generation are upping their game. Coming soon are fancy trick scooters, including a range from Razor that leaves a trail of sparks in its wake.
- Snuggle pets
Amongst the soft toys I loved these adorable new toys that will appeal to your child's caring nature, as they come with accessories so you can feed them and take care of them when they're poorly. Awww!
I would have loved to tell you about the latest Lego range, but I got chucked off the stand! Not for bad behaviour, but because unlike the other stands, it was by appointment only. What on earth were they building in there that it had to be so secret? Lego nuclear weapons? There was an enormous Buzz Lightyear at the entrance, so perhaps that's a clue....