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**What is it?**
The Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep is a sleeping doll which lays on a pillow and is supposed to respond to touch. It looks so sweet and unlike any other dolls my daughter has and we thought it might help her get used to her cot bed (and staying in her cot bed, more specifically!)
**Price and Availability**
The Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep is fairly easy to get hold of, we bought it in Smyths, a large toy store, but we have also seen it in Toys R Us and on Amazon. The RRP is almost £30 but we paid £22, which I thought was a bit on the pricier side for a toy which isn't based on a character (and therefore isn't subject to licencing), but as it's an electronic doll, I thought well, that's probably why it costs a bit more.
**What you get**
You get the Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep and the instructions. You *don't* get the 3 x AAA (smaller than clock, usually found in a remote) batteries, which is a bit annoying, luckily I have a stock of batteries from the pound shop in my kitchen drawer for such toy emergencies!
Baby Annabel is about 40cm in length and wears a white sleepsuit. She has her arms up in a cosy sleeping position and has her head rested on a pillow which is decorated with tiny sheep.
She has a hard plastic head, but the rest of her is very soft (aside from her back where the batteries go and the electronics are).
My daughter was intrigued by the Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep and we were excited for her to use it, but what looks good in theory isn't always brilliant in practice. She was quite interested when Baby Annabel was switched on as she makes a sweet yawning and snoozing sound but mere minutes later it goes silent and the only way I can work out how to make it do the sound again is to switch it off and back on again. It's supposed to respond to touch but I can't do it, and if I can't my todder can't.
I was disappointed to find that the arms of the Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep are actually in a fixed 'snoozing' by the head position, so even though it does look more realistic than other dolls when you are putting it to bed and so on, it can't be played with in all the ways a little girl likes to play with a doll - dressing it, pretending to feed it, putting it in the stroller and so on. So play is very limited, unlike with her other 'normal' dolls - and the sleeping bit she just play-imagines anyway.
Overall, I don't think this toy is versatile enough to keep your little one's attention - my little girl got bored after literally 10 minutes and went off to play with other toys. She hasn't taken to it enough for it to be an effective way of encouraging her to use her own bed for day naps and so on - she continues to rest on the sofa or insist on being on our bed.
Maybe I was wishing for too much from Zapf My First Baby Annabel Time To Sleep but for the price I don't think it's delivered on even the basics of play.
I can't say for the money I'd recommend it, for £10 you can get a doll with much more playability and you can spend the £10 saved on accessories. Unfortunately for this reason I'll be giving it a 1 star out of 5 rating as personally I think it's a poorly designed toy which was ultimately a waste of money.
This was one of the dolls that I wanted for my daughters, but didn't want to pay the £30 that it normally retails for.
Baby Annabel is a 36cm doll which falls asleep if she is placed on her pillow. She moves slightly if you touch her on the arms and cries when she is upset. Her eyes open and close and her head moves slightly off the pillow. Baby annabell doesn't do much more than sleep. You can move her limbs fractionally, but basically she remains in almost the same position at all times. She can't be placed in a dolls pram or anything as her arms are constantly raised.
Annabel comes with a tiny soft pillow with a sheep on it, and wears a white sleepsuit on, so she gets dirty easily. She has a hard head, but soft body.
Although as stated before, baby Annabel does move, she moved far too slowly and stiffly for my daughters to remain interested for any longer than five minutes. Apparently she is supposed to respond to you, but our never has. Our barely does what it says on the box.
This doll takes 3 x AAA batteries, which are not supplied. It has been designed for aged 12 months and upwards, although the size of it means that it would not be suitable for much older than a 2 or 3 year old.
Compared to the other Baby Annabel dolls, this one is certainly not good value for money.
Christmas is always a time for my daughter to receive lots of presents and although loads of my friends asked me what my daughter would like I couldn't really think of anything as my daughter is quite fortunate and sometimes it feels like she has everything! As a result one of my good friends told me she bought her a new doll, and I knew it was something my daughter would play with as she loves her motherly role play taking care of her bears and dolls. When she said it was a baby annabel I didn't want to be too stuck up and tell her she had one already so we graciously said thanks and on christmas day I awaited the sound of 2 crying baby dolls!
The doll is pretty much a replica of a baby (as most dolls are!) but this one is meant to cry and snore. Now I must say that she couldn't play with it properly at first as the doll does not come with batteries. As we opened presents at my mums we tore it out the box as she also received a doll carrier to play with it (a gift from a different friend!) and we threw the cardboard away. So the next day I went online and found the doll on the John Lewis website and it said it needed 3 AA batteries. This made me happy as I have loads of these laying around at home but after spending ages unscrewing the back I discovered it actually needs 3 AAA batteries. So this was annoying and meant she couldn't play properly with it for a few days after I had been to the Early Learning Centre and picked up a pack.
So once batteries were in, baby was raring to go! To start with it made little gurgling sounds and my daughter was excited to play with it but literally after 2 minutes it stops and goes silent. Now of course I don't want a continuous crying doll but then my my daughter comes running to me saying her doll is broken! So using the switch at the back to turn the doll off and back on the doll makes a fake yawning sound then snores again for 2 minutes and goes silent. This is quite annoying as my daughter comes back to me AGAIN and asks me to fix the doll so I turn the switch off and on again. This then repeats with my daughter tapping me every 2 minutes for 20 minutes before I get annoyed and tell her to just play with a different doll!
Fortunately the doll is not too loud but the crying/yawning/sleeping aspect is really pathetic as the doll literally makes no further noise 2 minutes after turning it on. Visually, the doll is good quality, the arms, legs and torso are squishy although you can feel the mechanic block in the tummy.
I think my friend paid around £20 for this doll as I'd seen it some time around christmas in Toys R Us for this price and as a cheaper zapf annabel doll I think this reflects in the quality of the doll. As a gift we do really appreciate it but overall it's annoying so I'm not so sure I'd recommend it :(