Safari Ltd® and Sweet Moments Bakery and Events teamed up to put together this vlog on “How to Decorate an Under The Sea” themed cake. This DIY cake decor project is a fun and exciting activity to do with your loved ones.

You will need the following items:

1. Safari Ltd® Coral Reef and Seashells TOOBS®

2. You can purchase a pre-made plain cake or bake your own (cover in icing or fondant).

3. Crushed graham crackers as your sand.

4. You will also need edible glue to secure the Safari Ltd® figurines in place on and around your cake.

5. For that extra touch, you can make fondant circle for bubbles and coral decor or use icing.

These wonderfully easy dessert-like snacks are a tasty healthy alternative to children and adults alike. A sweet tooth is a horrible thing to waste, but it’s much easier to tame your cravings in a wholesome way. Teaching your children these healthier ways to curb their sweet cravings will set them up for a lifetime of good eating habits!

We also really love how adorable and interactive these snacks can be. If you’re having a party, this is an especially fun activity as the ingredients are colorful and each person can tailor-make their very own apple pop. We love incorporating party themes and favors into our finished displays, so we sprinkled a slew of our Safari Ltd® Wildlife critters below!

You’ll need:
Wood skewers (as many as the apple pops you plan to make)
Apples (again, as many as you’d like to gobble up)
Greek yogurt

Toppings: You can pretty much choose anything under the sun here as apples and Greek yogurt set a neutral enough pallet to complement an array of toppings. Here are some of our ideas:

 

Chia Seeds
Cinnamon
Raisins
Coconut shavings

The process itself is simple.

First, cut up the apples and stick them firmly on a skewer. Then, dip them first in Greek yogurt.

Once your apple has a solid layer of yogurt, feel free to dip it in whatever other topping you’d like. It’s okay to mix and match!

Once you’ve got your finished apple pops dipped, pop those suckers in the freezer! Let them sit for 10-15 minutes.

Check they hardened and enjoy!

 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

The coming of Spring brings warm weather, flowers and holiday DIY fun! While we love excuses to eat candy, moms and educators across the globe have been finding more creative and healthy ways to fill their little one’s eggs and baskets. This year, the Safari Ltd® team is turning to imaginative, outdoor play as our egg filler. We’re using our popular Safari Ltd® Good Luck Minis in place of candy! These tiny figurines conveniently fit in eggs and provide an educational component to the traditional egg hunting festivities.

We’re using the Garden Fun Pack Minis as kiddos will likely be hunting outdoors, but there are a ton of fun, educational collections you can use. Get creative and theme to your child’s preferences!

Here’s what you’ll need:

 

A kid’s room can be a chaotic land filled with mythical creatures, tossed around shoes and blankets from galaxies far, far away. The imaginative spirit of play is something to savor for these years, but it doesn’t have to be quite so messy!

Making your kid’s room storage friendly is one of the best things a parent can do for their sanity! Often times, the best solutions work in tandem… like our DIY wine crate storage project below.

DIY wine crate projects are everywhere these days. These crates are so simple to make and add a much needed pop to any room… your child’s in particular. Putting up wine crates is extremely simple and gives any bedroom a rustic decor feel. Additionally, the crates and take care of messy toys by serving simultaneously as storage and display.

Animal figurines are experiencing a big comeback in the home decor scene. So, we like this DIY project even more as it offers a stylish and simple way to show off your kids’ favorite animals. Our favorite of course, are Safari Ltd® animal figurines. These handmade treasures have been passed down for generations. The down-to-earth collectables are accessible, maintain their integrity over time and make killer bedroom decor.

 

You will need:

  1. Wine Crates
  2. Paint (optional)
  3. Drill and nails
  4. Safari Ltd® Incredible Creatures

Enjoy!

Step 1: Collect 1-3 wine crates (depending on the wall and available space).

Step 2: (Optional) Paint the wine crate. If the room is neutral colored, you could choose a hue that stands out so the focus will lead to the wine crates. If the wall is already a vibrant color, choose a muted tone like white or grey, or simply leave as is. The natural wooden texture goes well with any wall color… and it’s the easiest!

Step 3: Measure out where you’d like to place the crates and drill them in the wall! Two people work best for this: one to hold and the other to stand back, assess the evenness and drill!

Step 4: Put your child’s Safari Ltd® figurines up for display giving your child’s room a break from the chaos of toys running wild!

 

 

Today we are going to take a magical trip to a wonderful place…your yard!

 

Fairy Gardens have been a long-time Pinterest trend we can’t get enough of. Not only do they give your garden much needed pizzaz, they’re great for your little ones. Children of any age love fantasy creatures, and sprinkling just a few of our Safari Ltd® fairies and mythical figurines around your backyard will instantly transform your it into your child’s imaginative playground.

You’ll need:

Existing garden space OR

Bird bath, small houses and stones or pebbles

Fairy Fantasies TOOB or collection of larger Fairies

1.     If using a birdbath, make sure to place it in a good location so that it will experience the least amount of direct weather exposure. Intense water and/or wind can wipe out even the most magical fairy gardens!

Once you’ve gotten to this point plan out where you want your decorative elements, you have a few choices.

For the advanced fairy gardener, you can arrange small houses and rocks within your birdhouse setting up a little home for your fairies. Sprinkle your stones and pebbles!

For the more organic fairy gardener, skip straight on to step 2, using a section of your actual garden or yard space.

2. Last but not least, let the fairies loose! Arrange your fairies in any playful manner you’d like. This is a great opportunity to get your little ones involved in imaginative role playing.

Transforming your backyard into a magical fairy garden is a great way to get your kids playing outside and enjoying Mother Nature.

Do you have your own Fairy Garden or Village? Describe it to us in the comments below!

 

 

 

Being a mascot is no easy task. Wendy, Flow, Mr. Geico Gecko… we’ve all got some pretty big responsibilities. I myself feel lucky Safari Ltd® chose me long ago to hang out by its name and represent such lovely people. In the spirit of that, and general mascot appreciation, I’d like to tell our story.

History is one of my favorite subjects, our own at Safari Ltd® not excluded. In a galaxy far, far away… or Florida in the 1970’s… two nature-loving enthusiasts started Safari Ltd® in their small North Miami Beach apartment.

Bernard and Rosemary Rubel were two people with a mission, to spread word on the importance of conserving endangered animals and educational toys. In the fine summer of ‘79, on a vacation to Munich, Germany, the Rubels stumbled upon a zoo shop. Here, they discovered a pair of rummy playing cards that would forever alter their story. The German cards featured photos of exquisite, wild animals and information on each. They had the cards translated and sent back home… here is where it gets good.

Back in Florida, the inspired couple began to take photos of wild animals around the state, converting their photography into postcards sold at zoos and other attractions. With the iconic Rolleiflex camera, the Rubels captured local wildlife, accomplishing their mission of spreading awareness of these animals and the importance of conserving them.

Eventually, the Rubels would go back to Germany, a favorite vacation spot of theirs, and see the toys that would inspire what the world now knows as Safari Ltd® figurines.

Spreading the mission, the Rubels made sure all their figurines would be developed as close to the original animal’s likeliness as possible. This would ensure children grew up truly knowing these animals and learning through the art of play.

Fast forward to present day, and Safari Ltd® has grown internationally and stayed a family affair. Ramona Pariente inherited the family biz from her parents and kept the legacy going for decades. Just recently, she passed the torch to her son, CEO Alexandre Pariente.

Keeping to family tradition, Alexandre runs the company with his wife, President Christina Pariente. These two animal enthusiasts and nature appreciators have been growing Safari Ltd® and spreading its mission of teaching children the importance of nature and conservation through the joy of play. With newly-devised efforts, like Safaripedia, this duo is taking Toys that Teach® to a whole other level!

I leave you here and with a quote, because who doesn’t like quotes? Yesterday is history, and tomorrow is a mystery.

Stay tuned and the blog for more exciting posts from an alligator, history buff and mascot extraordinaire.

Follow me on Twitter! @BernieTheGator

Peace, love and nature,

Bernie

 

 

 

Guest Blog Post by: Elise Duryea, M.A., CCC-SLP

Did you ever wonder if there was one toy that you could purchase for your child which would last them through the years and across many developmental levels? If you have sleeves of TOOBS® from Safari, Ltd, you’ve found the right tool. These small figurines cover countless categories of language vocabulary and can be used to teach the following skills:

  • categorization of vocabulary and labeling items
  • counting, numbers, math skills
  • color identification
  • cause and effect
  • parts of a whole (i.e. clothing, body parts, etc…)
  • prepositional/spatial skills
  • verbs, adjectives, pronouns, adverbs
  • sounds, words, phrases, and increased sentence production (mean length of utterance)
  • grammatically correct speech which includes syntax, morphology, articles, plurals

 

Unlike technology that children are hooked on today, using Toobs with a child is interactive and allows the adult to vary or modify their prompts or responses based on what a child says during the interaction. When a child is engaged in an app or computer program which is developed to appeal to a large audience and encompasses general concepts, synthesized speech, and limited response times, they are forced to stay within the constraints of the program and are hearing sounds which often do not mimic those in reality. However, face to face interaction using Toobs can target multi levels of development depending upon the skills you are hoping to teach and the level the child is at. The endless activities that you can create with these figurines can be individualized from minute to minute and adapted as a child matures and progresses in their skills and abilities. With Toobs, one is only limited by their imagination as they can be used with children with many disorders or disabilities, and across a wide age range and developmental level. By using these manipulatives with a child, they learn about and experience the world around them. They learn how to read body language, react to facial expressions and tone of voice, and use language as a means of communication. There is no technology in the world that can teach these valuable skills or show your child how much you value the time you spend with them as when you sit down to play.

Elise Duryea, M.A., CCC-SLP

NYS Licensed Speech-Language Pathologist

www.eliseduryea.com

Juicing is a hot topic these days… and with reason! There are an abundance of health-related benefits associated with drinking a tall glass of homemade goodness, especially if you have children. For starters, naturally-made juice is full of vitamins that make for an excellent source of nutrition. Controlling what you put into your little ones’ bodies ensure they won’t be consuming artificial ingredients or all the added sugars!

Take a look below for a very simple starter juice recipe chock full of nutrients and our Safari Ltd® minis! These tiny figurines dress up any cocktail or juice cup and make it more fun for kids! Making an activity, like trying to feed your child something healthy, into an opportunity for education is a huge time saver in the world of a busy parent.

Teach your kids about butterflies with Safari Ltd® Butterflies TOOB® while they sip natural juice!

We threw in some Safari Ltd® Good Luck Minis® giraffes for good measure.

  • 2 apples (large or medium)
  • 4 medium carrots
  • 2 oranges
  • Bonus ingredient: mint (the mint is optional but adds a really smooth aroma to the juice)

*Recipe serves 2

Did you enjoy this recipe? Did your kids learn more about animals with our Safari Ltd® Good Luck Minis? Let us know in the comments below!

The Orangutan is found on the isolated chain of islands that comprise Indonesia and part of Malaysia. They are primarily found on the two islands of Borneo and Sumatra. Each island has its own subspecies of Orangutan that spend most of their lives high up in the canopy of the rainforests where food can easily be found.

Their diet primarily consists of fruits and vegetation, including Jackfruit, Durian, Lychees, Figs, Mangoes, young leaves, shoots and over 400 species of other plants. They also aren’t afraid to eat bugs, eggs and smaller invertebrates if the opportunity arises.

Flanged Orangutan, Photocredit: David Arvidson

Flanged Orangutan, Photocredit: David Arvidson

Their arm-span can be 7 feet long, meaning they have the long arms adapted to life in the treetops. On the ground they travel on their knuckles, and are clumsy on the ground. Thus, when they come down from the trees, are much more susceptible to predators such as tigers and leopards.

Since tigers are very few in number themselves, the leopard is their main predator and the young are the most likely to be their victims. Yet, Orangutans can spend half of their daytime foraging on the ground for food and this leaves adults exposed to danger as well.

However, they tend to be safer far up in the trees, where they play an imperative role in the restoration of the forest. Orangutans eat and disperse the seeds of the fruits that they consume, and therefore spread them around as they travel around their territories. These fallen seeds can be the beginning of new sprouts if sufficient light and nutrients are readily available.

The fallen seeds and discarded fruit also become food for the Bearded Pig, a suid who is known to follow primates for their leftovers. As a result, the Orangutan’s eating behaviors influences the growth of the flora and fauna, as well as the lives of other species dwelling in the rainforest. Hence they earn their namesake Orangutan, which means “man of the forest” in the native Malay language.

Baby Orangutan, Photocredit: Schristia

Baby Orangutan, Photocredit: Schristia

Orangutans tend to live out solitary lives with both genders living within their own territories. Male orangutans will ensure that their territory, however, will overlap with several females for breeding. Female orangutans will have the company of their infant for many years, who are weaned when they are 3-4 years old but can remain with her until independence at 5-7 years of age.

Since the young orangutans remain with their mothers for an extended period of time, there can be as much as an 8-10 year period between the first and second birth. Orangutans typically give birth to only a single infant after bearing them for eight months. Their singular births and long birthing interval means that the Orangutan has a very slow reproductive rate. This also means that the population is also equally as slow to recover or rebound from threats to their species.

Male orangutans actually come in two variations: un-flanged and flanged. Un-flanged males look very similar to adult females, while flanged males have large facial disc and a bulbous throat sack for warning calls. These calls are intended to threaten other males to stay out of their territory, or to prepare for a fight. These differences in male physicality is unknown, but even stranger still is that males that were originally un-flanged can become flanged later in life.

Clyde the Orangutan @ San Diego Zoo

Clyde the Orangutan @ San Diego Zoo

There are two subspecies of Orangutan: the Sumatran Orangutan and the Bornean Orangutan, who have been separated on their individual respective islands for over a million years. Sumatran Orangutans are identifiable by lengthier facial hair and their tendency to gather together at abundant fruiting sites. They also tend to be a bit more social and the adults will interact with younger, inexperienced Orangutans. Sumatran Orangutans are much more reluctant to descend the ground in comparison to Bornean Orangutans.

Bornean Orangutans, particularly males, are much more likely to be found foraging on the ground. They don’t socialize or gather in temporary groups as nearly as often as Sumatran Orangutans, and the Bornean Orangutans are known to breed faster. This helps in growing the Bornean Orangutan population, which is much larger than the Sumatran.

Both Orangutan species are unfortunately threatened by increased logging and the conversion of rainforest into palm tree oil fields. Bornean Orangutans have been listed as an Endangered species since 1986, their population ranging between 45,000 to 69,000. Sumatran Orangutans are listed as Critically Endangered since the year 2000, their population is estimated to be a mere 7,300.

These species have continued to decline, and are projected to do so due to continual threats to their habitat. These threats, combined with their slow reproductive rate, means that the Orangutan is believed to eventually go extinct by 2050 as their habitat is continued to be destroyed.

Educational Logo copy

The Siamese cat is one of the oldest domestic felines along with the Egyptian Mau. The breed originated in Thailand which was formerly known as Siam-hence the “Siamese” name in English. The breed was only allowed to be exclusively owned by the Emperor and the monks living in the monasteries.

Essentially the Siamese was the original “aristocat”, a sacred feline limited to the aristocracy of Thailand, called Wichienmaat or Maew Kaew. When a member of the royal family passed away, it was believed that their Siamese cat carried their master’s soul within them. The Siamese cat was then brought to the monastery to live out the rest of its life in the lap of luxury.

Siamese Cat, Unknown Photographer

Siamese Cat, Unknown Photographer

Ancient writings and artwork from as far back as 1350 depicted the Siamese cat, around the time the Tamra Maew, or the Cat-Book of poems, was written. These are the oldest historical records of the existence of the breed, one of the poems precisely described the distinctive characteristics of the Siamese breed. Images coincided with the poetry depicting a feline that looks like the Siamese cat.

In 1884 King Rama V of Siam gave a British Consul named Edward Blencowe Gould a pair of breeding cats named Pho and Mia. Previously, the cats were not allowed to leave the country and those who were caught exporting or stealing the cat breed were put to death. This is the first time that the cats were exported from the country, and left with the consul to faraway Britain.

The consul gave the pair of Siamese cats to his sister, Lilian Jane Gould. The cats were placed on display the following year at the Crystal Palace Cat Show in London. They were not received well at the cat show, and the public rejected the breed. However, many aristocratic nobles in Britain were still won over by the cats and they quickly gained popularity, finally allowing the breed to win ribbons in 1884. The breed was known in Britain as the “Royal Cat of Siam”.

Siam_lilacpoint

Siamese Cat, Photo Credit: Martin Bahmann

In 1878, a Siamese cat affectionately named “Siam” arrived in America as a gift to President Rutherford B. Hayes from the American Consul in Bangkok. Siam was the first Siamese cat to land on American soil, and soon after the breed spread and could be found in American cat shows by the early twentieth century. The Cat Fancier’s Association officially recognized the Siamese as a breed in 1906.

The Siamese cats are born white and partially albino, so they do not develop their darker markings until they grow older. Their unique coat pattern is caused by heat-sensitive enzymes, and thus warmer areas of the body are white and colder areas are darker in color. It is common for the extremities such as the feet, tail, and ears to be colder than their core temperature, thus resulting in the dark colorations of those regions. The gradation of color in these areas are known as “colorpoints”, which are caused by their partial albinism.

Basically the enzyme in their bodies known as tyrosinase is defective, due to the albino mutation and does not function properly at normal bodily temperature. Tyrosinase is responsible for controlling the amount of melanin, or pigment, in the skin. This is what causes the colorpoint coloration, where temperature affects color in Siamese Cats. This trait is not only reflected in their coat, but in their particularly intense blue eyes since the presence of melanin is altered.

Siamese from Safari Ltd. ® Domestic Cats TOOB ®

Siamese from Safari Ltd. ® Domestic Cats TOOB ®

This partial albinism can cause the cats to give a difficult time seeing. In addition to this defect, there is a tendency for cats to be born cross-eyed, although breeding efforts have almost entirely eradicated this trait in the bloodline. . The Siamese was used to help create other breeds of cats including the Balinese, Oriental, a variation of the Persian, the Tokinese and the Hanava Brow, Ocicat, Burmese, Snowshoe, etc. They are the 9th most popular cat according to the Cat Fancier’s association for 2013.

 

next posts >>