Update July 2012

All the gear infants, tots, children and parents need.

Donald McDermott

Still Hating

Hot on the heels of the successful P.S. I Hate it Here is the even more outrageous P.S. I Still Hate It Here! (Abrams Image). Author Diane Falanga selected a hilarious group of letters written by children to parents about their adventures at summer camp. The book also takes readers on a nostalgic trip that conjures up the experience of being away from home. Order a copy online.

For Fido

Pet Power Products makes the job of cleaning up after man’s best friend a little easier thanks to the new Pooch Power Shovel. Small, lightweight, portable and durable, the shovel uses a motor to vacuum waste into disposable bags. The ideal way to keep your hands and your house clean, the Pooch Power Shovel is strong enough to work on any surface, including grass, concrete and even snow. Scoop one up at www.petpowerproducts.com.


The precision of ring toss comes together with the swashbuckling excitement of sword fighting in RingStix. Easy to learn, the game offers players of all ages the perfect combination of fun and fitness. Find out more about the innovative new company or pick up a set at www.ringstix.com.

Looking Good

Although Father’s Day has passed, it’s never too late to show appreciation for the man in your life. Shock Doctor has an amazing line of performance sports apparel that’s perfect for brothers, uncles and dads of all ages. The Velocity Base Layer line of shirts and shorts provides style, comfort and performance for every level of sports enthusiasts. Look for the collection in stores and online.

Play Green

Let kids pass the time with fun new products from Green Toys. Boasting a selection of affordable playthings made from 100 percent recycled plastic, Green Toys are perfect for the beach, the backyard and rainy days at home. Toss up veggies with the stackable Salad Set, dig for treasure with the Sand Play Set or create something special with the 15-piece Tool Set. Available at www.greentoys.com.

Against the Wall

Kids can now playfully write on walls thanks to a line of chalkboard murals by Elephants on the Wall. The do-it-yourself, paint-by-number projects add the perfect amount of flair to any child’s room. Easy to paint on, easy to wash off, murals are available in a variety of designs. Simply tape, trace and paint an original creation. For options, visit www.elephantsonthewall.com.

Personal Touch

Spark and Spark offers a nearly endless selection of fabulous designs and personalized items. From greeting cards and stickers, to lunchboxes and other accoutrements, Spark and Spark adds an extra personal touch to a gift or keepsake. Pay a visit to www.sparkandspark.com to learn more.

Stylin’ in the Sun

Little ones look cool in the warm weather when they sport beach accessories by Stephen Joseph Gifts. Debuting for summer 2012, the line offers eye-catching accessories, such as super cute beach totes, adorable toddler bucket hats and stylish flip flops in mermaid or pirate themes. Browse www.stephenjosephgifts.com for retailers and additional details.

Reading Rainbow

Take away the video games and iPads this season and let your child get wrapped up in the adventure a book. Sagaria (Editions Didier Millet) takes youngsters to a magical world sure to spark their imagination. The inspiring release also explores the values of friendship and courage and the impact of losing a loved one. The title is available for purchase or download.

Carry On

Transporting your child is easier than ever with the FreeHand Baby Carrier. The only one of its kind to feature an adjustable cross-over support system, the revolutionary design allows you to hold onto your babe in a comfortable position. The FreeHand Baby Carrier is available in stores and at www.togetherbe.com.

This column appeared in the July 2012 issue.