Tag Archives | card games

Rat A Tat Cat Anyone? Great Kid’s Card Game!

My 6 year old loves playing card games and prefers cards over toys or any other stationary activity at the moment.  Thanks to Debbie from The Village Toy Shop, we’ve recently discovered THE BEST card game ever and my entire family is more than slightly addicted.  If you have a child with an interest in numbers, memory, and logic…this game is a perfect choice.  The brand is Gamewright and they have great card, board, dice and party games. Rat A Tat Cat won the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Best Toy Award and I can see why.  The age on the front of the box says it’s from ages 6 and up.  My 4 year old can play, so has a good range for different ages, although 5 – 7 years old is probably the perfect age to introduce the game.  Okay..here’s how you play.

There are 54 rat and cat cards, mixed with a few ‘peek’, ‘swap’ and ‘take two’ cards which add a fun twist.  The goal of the game is to have your cards add up to the lowest number. You are dealt 4 cards and only initially can you peek at the two end cards, then you draw from the discard or draw pile and have to use your memory to replace cards with lower numbers.  The high cards are the rats and the low cards are the cats.  Obviously 0 and 1 cards are the best to get and when you’re confident you have the lowest number of cards, you tap the table and crow “Rat A Tat Cat”!  The other player goes one last time then you flip your cards over and determine who has the lowest number after you add up the 4 cards.  Francesco is so good at this game now – he’s tough to beat!  I’m a big fan of the card game Uno, but Rat A Tat Cat is hands down the best card game I’ve played with my boys.  Locally they can be found at The Village Toy Shop or online via Amazon.

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Support Your Village – That Includes Our Toyshop!

How exciting that our local village toyshop has recently gone ‘online’ with an awesome, new web site.  I couldn’t be more thrilled for the owner Kirsten. She already has a monthly guest spot on Global TV for hot tips on new toys and trends because her suggestions were SO popular from Christmas.   I discovered her store, shortly after having Francesco and boy is it a magical place.  You walk through the door and find toyologists wearing lab coats armed with more product knowledge and recommendations that you can handle!  <smile> Not only do they know all my kids by name and are super friendly, they are able to answer any question!  Each toyologist can tell you about a toy’s manufacturer, the materials it’s made from, and how you can maximize the toy’s value. Their customer service is amazing and the intimate shopping experience is one that everyone should experience.

In a time where cheaper toys are being recalled for malfunctions or paint is testing high for chemicals, upper scale toys are in demand for parent’s peace of mind. I don’t mind Playmobil’s prices because I’m confident they’ll never be recalled or have any problems (haha…have I mentioned I’m a hug fan of Playmobil?).  This may sound really paranoid, but I’m certain right before a company like Mattel or MEGA Brands recalls millions of toys, I’ll see these products at highly reduced prices at Winners. I remember being tempted to buy the Magnimals game for next to nothing the week before they were recalled.  I’m sure there’s a big conspiracy between large toy manufacturers and discount retail stores.  In recent years, I’ve realized that buying crappy toys just adds to the clutter in my house and doesn’t offer much value with the kids and how they play.  Toys offering a social message, that teach science or math, dress up clothes, puzzles, card games, or Playmobil sets encouraging imaginative play are the focus of our toy purchases these days.  These are sustainable items…not massive amounts of cheap plastic that will end up outlasting my life span at the landfill.

I’ve written many articles about supporting local farmers or purchasing clothing through Etsy to support a stay home mom that can sew, well the small toyshops are no exception.  Continue Reading →

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