Tag Archives: summer

We’re Moms Too: Baby’s First Summer

Written by Ashley

I honestly can’t believe the difference a year makes. Last summer, as I was typing a We’re Moms Too post, my feet were elevated, my hands were swollen and my stomach barely cleared the keyboard. As I write this now, body just about back to “normal,” I think about what fun activity I’ll get to do with my 10 month old daughter after getting home from work.

It’s only July and my daughter has already experienced a handful of summer firsts (she was born in early August last year, but was too little to really enjoy the outdoors). She has become a swing addict, although her first experience was a little shaky at first. My husband is a stay-at-home dad like Tena’s hubby, so I gratefully get to spend an hour with her here and there over lunch. There is a park about 5 minutes from my work with bucket swings. One workday, my husband packed us a picnic and we went to the park over my lunch break. After lunch, we placed her in the bucket swing and pushed it a bit. She sat in that swing like a limp dog – it was partially that we had no idea how to sit a baby in a bucket swing (“put a blanket behind her so she sits up further”) and partially that this was a completely new experience for her and she had no idea what was going on. But once we removed the blanket (and the over-sized floppy hat), she started smiling and giggling. Fifteen minutes later we had to leave so I could return to work, but I knew we’d be back to the bucket swings soon. On that day, we created a bucket swing monster.

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We’ve also had the chance to frequent a few ballgames. My husband is a die-hard Cleveland Indians fan, so it’s no surprise that he would want to share the excitement of the game with his daughter. Progressive Field has an awesome kid’s play area, which I’ve always wanted to check out, but couldn’t without a child (it makes sense that they won’t let you in without a kid). So when we took our daughter to the game a few weeks ago, I finally got the chance to check it out (I may have been more excited than her!). Most of the toys are still a bit too big for her, but she loved to crawl around on the mats and found a toy just her size – the Up & Down Elephant. She poked, pulled and climbed on the mini slide with confidence.

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One of my favorite firsts happened just last week. The weather has been fickle here in northeast Ohio so it’s been less than great pool weather. The other night it was HOT, like 90+ degree hot. So I thought it would be a good idea to bring out the pool and see if she liked dipping her feet in the cool water. Again, she was hesitant at first, but after mommy and daddy showed her it was okay, she looked like a seasoned pro. She was so proud walking around the pool holding onto mine and my husband’s hands. It was a proud moment for us too.

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Do you remember your first summer with baby? What was your favorite “first” that summer?

WM2_AshleyAbout Ashley
Ashley is a self-proclaimed fashionista, social media maven, and proud new mama. Together with her husband, they welcomed their first child last August. They also have a fur-baby named Peak, an 80-lb. yellow lab whom they adopted during a ski trip in Denver. She is the Social Media Manager at Step2 and you may have recently communicated with her if you’ve chatted with Step2 on Facebook or Twitter.

The Difference between Step2 Umbrellas

Picking the right umbrella for your Step2 products is very important whether you are shopping for a replacement umbrella or purchasing a sand & water table that does not include an umbrella.

The following products are compatible Step2 umbrellas:

We have two different adjustable umbrella sizes – 40″ in diameter and 60″ in diameter umbrellas. The 40″ umbrella adjusts between  34″ and 52″ when placed in a Step2 product. The 60” umbrella adjusts between 45″ and  69.5″ when placed in a Step2 product.  The umbrella colors may vary based on inventory levels. The above mentioned products can work with either size umbrella. However, knowing the shade coverage and proportions may help determine which umbrella will best fit on your Step2 product.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Products Pictured: Tropical Island Resort(left) and Naturally Playful® Sand & Water Activity Center(right)

 

Still need more information about the 40” and 60” umbrellas? Please call our Customer Service department at 1-800-347-8372 Monday through Friday between 8am – 5pm ET.

 

Family Fun at the Movies

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Spring has officially arrived and it is time to get out of the house and have a family adventure. There are many great movies that have come out or are coming out soon that can be entertaining for the whole family. Take a look at these trailers for movies that are hitting this spring and summer:

The Croods: This movie rolled into theaters two weeks ago and has been making a rocking commotion ever since. It is a prehistoric comedy that follows the first family as they travel outside of the cave that has been destroyed. Families and critics agree that it is a movie full of laughs and surprises that the whole family will enjoy. This movie is rated PG.

Epic: Epic is an animated film, coming to theaters May 24th, that tells the story of the protectors of the natural world and their battle against the forces of evil.  A teenage girl find herself magically transported to this secret universe where she teams up with the good warriors to save their world and ours.  *This film is not yet rated*

Monsters University: The prequel to Monsters, Inc. scheduled to be released June 21st. The plot of the movie takes place ten years before the events that occurred in Monsters, Inc. During this time, Mike and Sulley are in college and happen to be roommates. Realizing they are complete opposites, they become enemies and begin a rivalry that could tear their world apart. *This film is not yet rated*

Smurfs 2:  The evil Gargamel has captured Smurfette in order to gain the secret spell that can turn his newest creation Naughties into real Smurfs. The Smurfs must partner with their humans friends to rescue her.  Smurfs 2 is scheduled to be released in theaters July 31rd. *This film is not yet rated*

Despicable Me 2: The Anti-Villain League needs help dealing with a powerful new super criminal so they decide to recruit Gru in order to defeat the villain. This movie is expected to come out July 3rd. *This film is not yet rated*

Will you and your family be seeing any of these movies in theaters?

Summer Favorite: Tropical Island Resort Recognized by Toy Insider

Tropical Island ResortThe Toy Insider has awarded Step2’s Tropical Island Resort as one of the “elite group of toys profiled in their 2012 Toy Insider Spring & Summer Hot Toys list.” The Toy Insider helps parents and gift givers make the best choices when it comes to purchasing toys for children. This is the first time there has been a list dedicated to the Summer & Spring toys although The Toy Insider is in its seventh year. The Tropical Island Resort and other toys featured on the list were reviewed by experts for creativity and quality, which is what Step2 thrives on.

The Tropical Island Resort provides children with hours of water fun. There is a diving board for toys (14 piece accessory set included), water wheel carousel, and a geyser to pump for water flow. In addition, it is designed to hold 40” Umbrella (sold separately) that can protect children from the harmful rays of the sun!

We are proud to have received this certificate from The Toy Insider:

Toy Insider Award Tropical Island

What do you think of the Tropical Island Resort?

Tips for Getting Your Outdoor Step2 Products Ready for Summer Fun

The kids are almost out of school, temperatures are rising all across the country, and outdoor toys are being brought back outside. This means one thing – Summer is almost here!

At Step2, safety is our number one priority; so we’ve devised some tips for getting your outdoor Step2 products ready for summer fun.

Outdoor Toys

Wagons & Ride-Ons

  • Review assembly instructions [available on all product pages (example)] to verify products meet all safety requirements as installed
  • Check seat belts on wagons and ride-ons to insure that they are secure, the buckles function and the fabric is not weathered or damaged
  • Look for signs of excess wear on wagon and ride on wheels
  • Check for bent axles or casters
  • Look for cracking on any handles

 

Swings & Climbing Equipment

  • Review assembly instructions to verify products meet all safety requirements as installed
  • Check for obstacles around home playground equipment  (there should be a minimum of 6 ½ feet clearance around the perimeter of the equipment)
  • Check all hardware on climbing & swing set equipment to make sure they are tight and make sure anchors are in place and beneath surface level
  • Check swing ropes on climber/swing sets to insure they are in good condition with no signs of fraying or rotting from sun/weather exposure. If you see signs of wear, please call Step2 at 1-800-347-8372 to order a swing replacement kit.

 

Sand & Water Products

  • Make sure sandbox lids are intact to keep sand clean and critters out
  • Check umbrellas for proper installation, function and fit.  Check umbrellas for exposed metal tips or torn fabric.  Remove damaged umbrella from use.
  • Check all sand & water product plugs for wear and make sure they are inserted all the way to prevent leakage

 

Additional Outdoor Toys

  • Review assembly instructions to verify products meet all safety requirements as installed
  • Check to see if basketball/football bases are properly weighted with sand or water
  • Check for cracks in any plastic toy before use
  • Products can be washed with a mild soap & water
  • Use Armor All®* to shine up your Step2 mailbox or playhouse after washing (not recommended for use on climbing/swing equipment for safety reasons)

 

Replacement parts & decals to spruce up your products (with exception to some discontinued products) are available at reasonable prices by calling us toll free at 1-800-347.8372 Monday through Friday between 8 AM and 5 PM ET.

*Armor All® is a registered trademark of Armor All Group

Summer Clearance Sale June 10 through June 18

Summer Clearance Sale

For one week only, the following items are marked down as part of the Step2.com Summer Clearance Sale*. Plus, all these items ship free this week!

 

Be sure to check out additional clearance items here.

*Summer Clearance Sale prices valid now through Saturday, June 18, 2011 at 11:59 PM ET. While supplies last. Not valid with any other offer and cannot be combined with promo codes. Product selection, pricing, and availability vary by ship to country.