Monday, 24 October 2011

Guest Toyologist Review for Mummiefun: Moon Sand Candy Factory

We were kindly asked to do a Guest Review for Mummiefun who are Toyologists for Toys 'R' Us.

They sent us the Moon Sand Candy Factory to see what we thought and here's our Guest Review for Mummiefun and Toys 'R' Us...

Moon Sand Candy Factory

When we received the parcel, Lexi was so excited because it was so brightly coloured and appealing that she wanted it opened instantly.

My first impression was one of slight disappointment as I felt the packaging falsely advertised the contents of the box. It shows the candy factory with lots of candy sweets made with green, pink and purple sand which look really cool. My disappointment stemmed from the fact that when we opened the box and pealed back the paper, there were only two colours included in the box (it does state this in the contents list but just shows different colours on the front). There being only two colours meant that the elaborateness of the designs we could make were severely restricted in comparison to the ones shown on the front of the box.

Lexi being just 2 didn't care how many colours were included and was insistent that we got the sand out and started creating immediately so we did...

The instructions were really easy to follow. We simply had to click the lever press together and place it in the ready made tray (bottom of the box), tip the sand out and we were away! The kit contains a candy press machine, different shaped moulds, a measuring cup, two colours of magic Moon Sand which feels slightly damp to the touch and never dries out however it doesn't stick to everything like normal wet sand does. It is really hard to describe but it feels really strange and new and sticks to itself without sticking to your hands/fingers and everything else. A genius idea!
"Moon Sand is a modelling compound with all the fun of the beach but without the mess! Squish it, shape it or mould it! Moulds like dough but it never dries out, you can reuse again and again, indoors or out. Moon Sand won't stick or stain"

The bottom of the storage box is designed to store the sand in but I thought it would be easier for Lexi to use if I put it in some Tupperware pots which I did.

The first step is to press the sand into the measuring cup to ensure you have the correct amount of sand;

Moon Sand Candy Factory says that it is suitable from 3 years and as Lexi is only 2 years old Mummy had to play with it with her and supervise as she needed some encouragement to understand what to do with it and how to play with it other than just digging in the sand!

Once I had taught Lexi how to measure out the sand and tip it into the moulds she was well away. Measure out sand, tip into different shaped moulds, pop into lever press machine and pull down the lever then Hey Presto! cool looking Candy!

Being so young Lexi's candy was just one colour and didn't look quite like the candy on the box front so Mummy had a go to see how easy or difficult it was to make the candy look funky...

Lexi helped Mummy measure out the sand whilst Mummy painstakingly pressed tiny amounts of the opposite colour sand into the mould trying to make sure it was only in the hollowed out shape rather than anywhere else in the mould, we then tipped it in the sand Lexi had measured out, popped it into the press and Lexi pulled the lever. With bated-breath we lifted up the mould to reveal...

Mummy had managed it. It took a lot of concentration and effort but Mummy had made candy look like it did on the box!! You can re-use Moon Sand simply by crumbling it apart again but Mummy was so proud of herself that she wanted to keep these candies as a memento of the fun Lexi and I had had making them and the effort that had gone into them so we simply popped them onto a baking tray covered in tin foil and put them in the oven (times are stated in the instructions dependent on oven type). When they came out they had gone completely hard but still looked just as vibrant and funky! I am still a little disappointed that the kit only came with two colours as just one more would, I feel, have made all the difference to the versatility of the fun we could've had!

You can purchase the Moon Sand Candy Factory direct from Toys ‘R’ Us website for £14.99. I think that this is a little expensive for a toy if you are going to use it with a child as young as Lexi as the amount of fun and time she spent playing with it was limited. However, I think that an older child who could play with it alone would have a lot of fun and get hours of enjoyment creating their own candies and displaying them in the storage box - especially if they purchased one or two extra colours of Moon Sand (available to buy separately for £6.99 for two colours).

All in all, Lexi and Mummy did spend a good couple of hours having lots of fun with the Moon Sand Candy Factory and although Mummy was a little disappointed; Lexi didn't mind how many colours there were or how hard it was to make the candy look amazing because she merely enjoyed playing with the sand and having fun. This means that from Lexi's point of view, the Moon Sand Candy Factory is definitely awarded the prestige of being Loved By Lexi.


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