Favourite Five: October

Here’s our monthly run down of our five favourite things at Mr Fox HQ this month.

As you might imagine, we spend an unusual amount of time seeking out brilliant toys, games, clothes, recipes and decor ideas for kids to share on Mr Fox. It isn’t really very healthy for our own bank balances, especially when our sons catch a glimpse over our shoulders…

We are always on the lookout for practical, innovative or plain cool stuff so let us know what you have been buying, reading, and coveting by email or on Facebook.

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Lydia & Kate

1. Rio Roller Varsity Skates

Rio Roller Skate John Lewis

Lydia: I haven’t thought about roller skates since around 1993 when the Saturday night roller disco was the high (and low) of my social calendar. Until this month, hanging out at a friend’s house when the kids dug out some bright pink roller boots and spent the afternoon trying to stay upright on them. It was like Bambi meets Dancing on Ice. If only for my own amusement, guess what I’m getting them for Christmas?

Get them at John Lewis.

2. You Are Here by Robin Jacobs & Kathrin Jacobsen

You Are Here Map Book

Kate: Top of my gift list for older kids at the moment, this new ‘interactive atlas’ from art and design publishers Cicada is loaded with maps, graphs, facts and figures and hands-on activities for kids to do. It’s beautifully illustrated by East London artist Kathrin Jacobsen (whose style is very reminiscent of Mr Fox favourite Marion Deuchars) and introduces geography and environmental themes in a cool way for little learners. My four-year-old loves the colouring and comparison activities, but those 6+ would get the most from it.

Get one at Amazon.

3. Dinosaur Die Cut Cards by Lorna Scobie

Dinosaur Birthday Invitations

Lydia: For my older son’s 7th birthday last month I designed and printed invitations for him to colour in. Whose idea was that? It took him (read: me) so long to finish them – with painstaking attention to staying in the lines, of course – that they barely got handed out before the party. But there aren’t that many cool and (relatively) inexpensive invitations out there.

Luckily, his brother has declared that his 4th birthday party – in February – is to be dinosaur themed. Again. So not only do I already have a box of decorations from last year, but I’ve found these brilliant 3D invites by Lorna Scobie for Oh Deer. Not as cheap as making them but a damn site easier.

Get them at Oh Deer 

4. J Crew Save More Elephants

J Crew Save The Elephants

Kate: You really can’t beat J Crew for graphic tees for kids but their Garments for Good range makes shelling out for them for small people just that little bit easier. This is from the second range designed in collaboration with Brooklyn illustrator Hugo Guinness and 100% of the net proceeds go to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Kenya, which rescues and protects orphaned elephants and rhinos. To date they’ve successfully rescued and rehabilitated 190 orphaned calves. And they come in adult sizes too…

Find Out More at J Crew

5. Storm Trooper Costume

Storm Trooper Kids Costume

Lydia: I made a critical parenting error last week. I decided, in light of the new Star Wars release in December, to let my kids (aged 3 and 7) watch the original 1980 release of The Empire Strikes Back. In my defence, it’s been a while. I think I watched it last when I was about 13. Needless to say, 3 minutes in as Luke Skywalker is dangling in a dark cave, blood-stained and concussed at the hands of a monstrous, furry Wampa, both children had relinquished their popcorn so as to cover their eyes. I quickly decided better of it.

However, Star Wars is a big concept at school, so if, like me, you want to show allegiance to the theme – without scarring them for life – just go to John Lewis instead and drop £20 on this cool costume.

Buy yours at John Lewis