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My Daughter the Chef
Chad Valley 104 Piece Play Food Set
Member Name: elfbwillow1
Chad Valley 104 Piece Play Food Set
Advantages: Promotes Imaginative play with hours of fun
Disadvantages: Average Durability
Chad Valley Make Believe
104 Piece Play Food Set
My Daughter the Chef
I can not believe that two years has now past since my daughter was born and to celebrate her 2nd birthday she had a little party with a few of her friends - and just to note, I never thought that a two year olds birthday party would be so exhausting!
Among the lovely presents my daughter received for her birthday was a 104 piece play food set from Argos. This particular food set is made by Chad Valley so immediately I feel that it is a good and safe make and is aimed for children three years plus, though to be honest there are not really any small parts which I feel are dangerous for my daughter (inspected closely before letting her play with it all much to her annoyance at me!). Some children of my daughters age may still be at the putting things in mouth stage and not understand maybe that these are pretend food so that is something to keep in mind, though luckily my daughter is very good with this and has a right little imagination on her.
You generally pay more for the packaging with toys and pay more for the packaging in food so I would have expected the same with this toy being both a toy and play food though to be honest, the packaging is not over huge for the items inside and is a necessary part of the toy when brought. I really hate when toys come in boxes ten times bigger than a toy as it is such a waste, but you don't get that here.
The box is quite a sturdy cardboard box, average with childrens toy packaging. On the front and back are images of the food inside, though a little misleading in parts which I will explain below. The box is extremely colourful and so very eye catching to the child though with Argos it is sometimes a good thing that the toys and other items are in the stock room, though on the downside to this you don't get to see the item for yourself before purchase.
Inside, the food is separated into two plastic sealed bags - in no real order that I could see. There are no hidden packaging or building of the toys to make the child wait which is great as children can be very impatient when waiting for a toy to be built! There are various cardboard items of food, though, which need to be put together, though this is very easy and quick to do. A couple of the juice carton items were a bit fiddly to put together though that is about it.
TIME TO COOK
As the packaging and the name of the toy suggests, there are 104 pieces of food within this toy which is a fair amount of play toys to get scattered around the floor of your house as my house has now seen - I can not move for tripping over a plastic banana or cardboard cereal box!
The 104 items is a little misleading, though. In the main there are some lovely items of food, both plastic and cardboard items, though there are also a very large amount of Pringle shaped crisp toys - each counting as one item which is a little bit of a rip off as they are very small and technically all one item. This is not easily seen on the picture on the box and really instead of advertising it as 104 it should be nearer 70 or 80 items - even though that still is a lot of items!
There is a large range of food items within this pack;
The plastic items are probably much more recognisable to my daughter and range from burger king type chips in its cardboard container, to yellow bananas, slices of pizza, two piece hot dogs, carrots, two piece ice creams and lots more. The plastic items range from a very soft plastic which can be dented easily if stood on to a harder plastic for the eggs and tomatoes, which still can be dented if pushed harder though are that little bit more durable. The two piece items slot together easily and in the main my daughter can put them together and take them apart herself though does have a little trouble with the ice creams as it is more fiddly to slot the two pieces together even for me.
There are less cardboard items of food, though still a good amount. These, of course, are less durable and as they are thin cardboard do hold the risk of ripping and tearing. They are also bent and squashed easily so do loose their shape quickly if not careful. Items in the cardboard food range between cereal boxes, juice cartons, milk cartons, popcorn boxes and more. These are easily put together with a few as mentioned above a little more tricky though it is not impossible by any means! The names of the food (ie cereal brands) are not recognisable in general to my daughter though she has her own names - there are some hoop shaped cereal and so she immediately calls them cheerio's even though the box is unbranded so children will make what they will with these.
Overall, the quality is about average for toys of this kind though there is a wide variety of different items which is great and above all, my daughter absolutely loves playing with them, cooking them on her new kitchen toy or going to the 'shops' and putting them in her new trolley.
As already mentioned, my daughter adores playing with this food play set. The set encourages imaginative play and my daughter embraces this really well even at the age of two, which is great to watch and play along side her. There is no limit as to what can be done with these toys, from going to the shops, cooking, serving up dinners, feeding dollies, teddy bears picnic - you name it, children will come up with something and I personally think that imagination in children is important - it's a sign of being a child!
My daughter has got frustrated a couple of times when she couldn't put the ice cream back together again, though really that is about it. Although she already knows the names of most the food in the pack, she is also learning the food names that are part of the toy though ones we don't eat at home which is great.
Of course, there is a downside for parents - lots of clearing up - constantly! The food gets around the floor like a flood of water, and already a few things have gone missing probably to be found years later behind the kitchen units or somewhere! Some people may not want the mess in their house, I know my brother in law doesn't like constant mess of toys over the floor at his house though me, I say if my daughter is having safe fun then I really don't mind the mess - I can always tidy up when she goes to bed and as and when it gets too much in the day!
Toys are generally so expensive these days though this set is average price which has actually been lowered once again recently. In the main Argos catalogue this set is down as £9.99 and is also in the two for £15 range which covers quite a few different toys such as the shopping trolley, till and many other toys throughout the catalogue in the mix and match range which is really great value in my opinion. On the Argos website the price now states it as £7.49 which is a saving of over £2 when brought alone, but it is well worth looking into the two for £15 range for other money saving ideas.
My daughter thoroughly enjoys this set of play food, and apart from the mess, I think it is a great toy as well. It promotes imaginative learning through play and on the whole is averagely durable - usual for this type of toy. The price is a good price and will give children hours of fun.
I fully recommend this toy, especially when under the two for £15 range in Argos.
Summary: Great addition to play kitchen and shop if you dont mind the mess!
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