Friday, September 3, 2010

A Little Thomas Obsession

We can't deny anymore the Thomas the Train obsession in our house.  It isn't just a phase anymore, it's been going on for almost 3 years.  John got his first train set on his first birthday and on every gift giving occasion at least three trains are given to him.  This isn't an obsession I mind.  Actually, I love that he loves Thomas the Train.  If you've ever sat down and watched a Thomas DVD you may wonder why I, or any kid for that matter, love it so much.  They move slowly and are very simple.  This is was I like about them.  It encourages kids to use their imagination.  In a world that is full of Chuggington, Dora the Explorer and every other new and exciting show it is a breath of fresh air for me to see kids watching a show that doesn't move so fast.  I'm pretty sure the guy that created Thomas is rolling in the dough as the shows took mere pennies to make and are still being sold all over the world.

The only problem with Thomas the Train is that everything costs so much!  Don't get me wrong, it is all worth it.  Everything is made well and will last a lifetime, but to get your kid all the trains and accessories will set you back a pretty penny.  My mom and I have found a few sites we love and use often and I thought I would share them with you.

Trains Galore is a great site.  They have free shipping on orders over $55 and a flat rate $6 shipping for anything under $55.  They also have a store located in Noblesville, IN (near Indianapolis).  While I haven't had the chance to visit the store yet, I can only imagine it is worth the trip.  They ship fast and often have sales.

Mesko Toys is a great place to get pieces of track. They make track out of scrap pieces of wood and pass the savings onto the customer.  As your little train engineer gets to making his/her own layouts, it is nice to have a few of these odds and ends pieces.  The only downside to this track is that it isn't two sided like the Thomas track, but it does the trick.

On Ebay I love, love this seller.  He actually sells all kinds of things, but has great prices on various Thomas things.  He ships fast and does combined shipping on multiple items.

As always Amazon is great and Michaels is also another great place to try.   Michaels often times has 40% off coupons on regular priced merchandise and you can even finds some treasures there at great clearance prices.  And, don't forget to explore Craigslist.  While I will never sell the pieces we have accumulated there are many people out there willing to part with hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise at a fraction of the cost.

While my house is filled with pieces of track, various bridges and trains everywhere I wouldn't have it any other way.  I love to sit at the top of the stairs and listen to John's imagination soar as he reenacts the various stories in his head.  These toys have given him hours of imaginative play and enjoyment.  And, it must be contagious as Gus is loving them just as his own way.

No comments: