Fun for the new year!

Staff Writer
Columbus Parent

American Girl goes 3-D

Making pop-up crafts and pieces of art is a snap with this book! Girls will find step-by-step instructions for stacking images to make 3-D scenes on greeting cards, picture frames, mobiles, and more. Kit comes complete with art supplies: punch-out art and greeting tags, 2 foam sheets, 8 gift labels, 10 note cards, and 4 mini-easels, plus colorful string and sparkling jewels. Retails for $12.21 on

Where, oh where, has my little sock gone

It's something we all can relate to: you open the dryer, match up your socks and inevitably a few have mysteriously vanished into thin air. Where have they gone? We don't know. But now once-happy pairs have become sad "singletons" with no purpose.

Record-breaking author Cynthia Copeland comes to the rescue with a little gem of a book that gives new meaning to those left-behinds. Filled with Cynthia's wonderful light-hearted illustrations, it contains 200 surprising, clever, and fun uses for the remaining sock, along with humorous insights into where all the missing ones may have washed off to.

This will be a welcome gift book for anyone who's ever done a load of laundry. Available at Barnes and Noble for $9.95.

How to build a dragon

Embark on an exciting adventure into the world of dragons. From ancient times to the present, the mythical dragon has intrigued children and adults of all ages, becoming an important part of folklore and literature. Recall the legends of the Vikings, King Arthur and Merlin, and the newly beloved Harry Potter, in which dragons have played major roles. Complete with a 32-page book filled with fascinating dragon lore, this kit contains everything you'll need to assemble and paint four of these magical and mighty creatures: 4 assemble-yourself models, 6 pots of paint, 2 containers of glaze, a paintbrush, and instructions. Ages 8 and older. Available at bookstores for $19.95.

World class tongue twisters

It won't be just the words that get readers tongue-tied by She Sells Sea Shells - these wacky, witty, and wonderful illustrations by Seymour Chwast will have everyone speechless with delight!

Chwast, the artist and co-founder of the infamous Pushpin Studios, has an enormous influence on design and illustration everywhere. Now he brings his unique perspective to 25 of the most entertaining tongue-twisters ever-some familiar and others less so. He's created vibrant, original work that constantly surprises and amuses, whether it's his Heidi-like maiden with a small figure skiing down her dress in "My Swiss Miss Misses Mississippi," or his "Merry Moose from Manitoba" happily "wearing moccasins from Minnetonka."

This book is sure to become a favorite in every family's library, whether to stimulate some fun verbal stumbles or just to pore over with pleasure.

Pop-Up Flash Cards Animal Alphabet

These 26 amazing pop-up cards by School Zone are a fun and exciting way to help your child learn the alphabet.

Each card has three unique features: On the front of the cards, uppercase and lowercase letters help your child learn the letters of the alphabet. Guess which animal is inside! On the inside of the cards, friendly pop-up animals teach your child beginning sounds. And on the back of the cards, interesting letter scenes further reinforce beginning sounds. $7.99. Ages 3 to 6.

Good citations

Ticket A Kid is a fun tool for parents who might not have the greatest time motivating the kids to complete their daily responsibilities around the house. The idea is simple: If the kids forget or neglect to turn off the TV when they leave the room, forget to take out the trash, talk back or misbehave in any of the 43 different ways listed on the product, just pull out the pad and write a ticket. First offenses may get a warning, but subsequent offenses result in a deduction of their allowance from 50 cents to $2.

The system works with kids who are old enough to appreciate the value of money, and it's a great way to teach them respect, responsibility and common values. Collect that ticket money and use it at the end of the year for something special. Available at

Book 'em, Danno!

Diary of Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book

Extra special thanks to our extra-special book reviewer, Sean Marks of Powell. This Jeff Kinney book is available for $10.95 at bookstores. Want even more Wimpy Kid? Enter the Diary of a Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself comics contest! Go online to for full details. Hurry - contest ends January 31.