Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Win a Melissa & Doug shopping spree


Melissa & Doug toys have been part of our life since Max was a baby. They've been integral to his growth—and enjoyment. His occupational therapists have regularly recommended them (see: 7 ways to encourage play for kids with special needs). They're engaging, creative, fun and great quality; ours have lasted for years. So I'm thrilled to partner with them for a giveaway.

In case you haven't yet seen it, Melissa & Doug have a Toys for Special Needs catalog. The collection  was chosen by consultant Melissa Ligouri, Ed.D., a psychologist and educational consultant. You can search toys by need—Social & Emotional, Oral Motor Skills, Gross Motor Skills, Fine Motor Skills, Cognitive Skills, Speech & Language, Life Skills, Sensory Awareness and last (but not least!) Picky Eater. Someday, wouldn't it be great if parents could also search toys by "Most likely to occupy your child while you make dinner"? Ha ha ha!

Some of Max's favorites:

Both kids have gotten approximately a gazillion hours of use out of this easel. It has a dry-erase board on one side and a chalkboard on the other, so there is plenty of room to repeatedly write, say, "Max loves purple!" There's also a paper-roll holder, a kid-safe paper cutter, grip clips and plastic trays with holders for supplies. Ours has stood the test of time—as in, it is still standing after years of use. And in good shape.

This is one of those toys that's so much fun, your kid won't have a clue it's great occupational therapy. The seven pieces of fruit have Velcro on the ends so kids can "cut" them into a total of seventeen slices. At first, I'd hold my hand over Max's; eventually, he learned to hold the knife and cut them on his own. I wrap the knife with molding clay to make it even easier to hold. Although this does not teach your child to prepare three-course meals for you, it is still awesome.

Jumbo Triangular Crayons
These are grasp-able by kids who otherwise can't get a grip on skinny crayons; their shape means they won't roll away; and they're made of plastic (not wax) so they really, really last. Win, win, win!

Play Money Set
This is one seriously realistic money set, with $1, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 paper bills and coins in various denominations. I've used it better help both kids understand the meaning of money, and they like playing "store" with it. Max gets a kick out of offering me $100 so he doesn't have to take a bath.

Vehicles Maze Puzzle
It's great for hand-eye coordination and fine-motor skills. There are nine pieces that slide around tracks—and they're attached, so they will not get lost in the wilds of your playroom. 

Sort & Snap Color Match
This comes with ten reversible picture cards; kids snap the color caps into holes on the picture side. The reverse sides have pictures in black and white, so kids can create their own patterns and decides. This is great for teaching colors, sorting, beginning math, and encouraging pincer grasps and focus.

READY TO WIN A SHOPPING SPREE? 
(Sure you are!)

1 winner will receive a  $200 shopping spree at MelissaAndDoug.com

1 winner will receive a $100 shopping spree at MelissaAndDoug.com

1 winner will receive a $50 shopping spree at MelissaAndDoug.com

Shipping is included!

HOW TO ENTER

• Enter via the Rafflecopter form below, which includes an area to privately enter your email. Additional entries can be gained by signing up for the Melissa & Doug newsletter and doing social media shares.

• The entry deadline is Tuesday March 25 at 11:59 P.M. EDT. No entries accepted past deadline. For complete entry rules, see "Terms and Conditions."

WINNER DETERMINATION

• The three winners will be randomly selected within 48 hours after the giveaway is closed. I will email the winners at that time. Once winners have been verified, they will be named on this post.

• If I do not hear back from a winner within five business days, another winner will be chosen.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

3/26/14 UPDATE: THE WINNERS!

Congrats to Diana Gendreau, Michelle Brunson and Analissa Cruz, who won the $200, $100 and $50 shopping sprees. Happy shopping!

This giveaway has been sponsored by Melissa & Doug LLC. For more information, please visit MelissaAndDoug.com

177 comments:

  1. We have the cutting veggies set (which I adore) and the cupcake set (not my favorite, markers included to draw on the cupcakes for icing and despite me hiding them, they keep re-appearing!). We also have Leo the Lion and a ton of puzzles.

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  2. I love their magnetic "paper dolls" as well!

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  3. We love the "sound" puzzles. Great for blind and VI kids!

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  4. The cutting veggies are great. My favorite memory is a time when my husband had on pants with holes in the knees. Some friends' kids were cutting the foods up and then, along with some play bread slices, putting them in the holes and saying, 'look we are putting them in the toaster!"

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    1. Shannon....
      Your story!! Crack. Me. Up!! ;-D
      --Raelyn

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  5. We only have puzzles from Melissa and Doug for my 2 year old but we are looking to expand her collection to assist with her motor skills.

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  6. I use Melissa and Doug toys all of the time to teach imaginary play skills to my clients-and they are amazing for kids who are working on their fine motor skills! I have the cut-up food set, the play money, the latches puzzles, and the kitchen accessories and food!

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  7. i LOVE melissa & doug. in our house the wooden pizza, the fishing puzzle with the little magnet pole, and the the pattern/tangrams puzzles have been HUUUUUUGE. and the dress-up wooden "paper" dolls! and the geometric stacking toy! (which we still have for when babies come to visit -- it's in as good shape now as when i bought it USED twelve years ago.) uh, ok, FINE, we have a ton of melissa & doug stuff! DON'T JUDGE ME. it's a great brand.

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    1. Marjorie....
      "Uh, ok, FINE, we have a ton of Melissa & Doug stuff! DON'T JUDGE ME. It's a great brand.". I can't but agree!! No judging here!! ;)
      --Raelyn

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  8. I will enter but hope the nice folks there don't read my post about how Melissa and Doug may appear to be friendly folk but I did not enjoy the emergency truck puzzle with sound that often made me think (as I went naked through the house to assist an unhappy or sick child) that police were in my living room. I don't know how a naked person (apparently my white butt reflects a lot of ambient light?) triggers the sound of a siren but it does, so that puzzle was evicted and finished its life in my garage, where the sirens were less annoying than at 2am in my living room, where I hope police and fire never make an appearance. Love the food, though, really.

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    1. Ginger....
      I think that you are entitled to your opinions!! And that is a pretty hilarious story!! ;-D
      --Raelyn

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    2. I love your products!

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    3. LOL!! My little girl had one of those and I passed it on to someone else (that I didn't like very much) because of it's random moments of making noises!

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  9. I cook a lot so I would love to get a Cooks Corner Kitchen for my grandkids and visitors children so they can "cook" along with me.

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  10. My kids would love the play money set! They like to play store!

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  11. We love the thick pieces of the wooden puzzles! Our son really enjoys doing tgem since he can more easily maneuver the pieces. I only wish they made them with more pieces.

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  12. I would love to throw this stuff into my sons at home "work" lol

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  13. Love the puzzles and sorting toys!

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  14. We have always been a fan of M&D toys. Kyle loves the wooden pretend pizza, since it's his favorite food!

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  15. What a fun giveaway! Thanks, Ellen!

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  16. M and D have some very cool stuff. I have purchased several things through gilt group.

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  17. I would absolutely love to get the 2 in 1 Talking Ball Learning Toy for my son! He's very keen on toys that make sounds and instead of just pressing buttons, this would encourage him to roll a toy to get more understanding of cause and effect :)

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  18. My daughter loves the big puzzles.

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  19. My daughter likes the food sets. We have the birthday cake set and the ice cream set.

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  20. Love the sound puzzles!! Think m&d products are great, have had many over the years, so many things I've never seen before though!!!!

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  21. I've always been fascinated with food and how it was made. The cutting board set was my childhood favorite.

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  22. My daughter used the cutting food set in Speech therapy and it helped so much that we went out and bought it! It is definitely a favorite in our house :)

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  23. I did not know that they had a special needs catalog, thank you so much for sharing! Would love to win, thanks for that chance!

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  24. http://www.melissaanddoug.com/bella-butterfly-hopscotch
    I love the butterfly hopscotch as well as the froggy target game for my special needs campers and they love it too!

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  25. Thank you we love their stuff

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  26. That sort and snap looks awesome!

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  27. We love the car carrier at our house :)

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  28. Oh, love this! I love their stuff but it's often outside our price range.

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  29. Ellen....
    Melissa & Doug have a Toys for Special Needs catalog?! I did not know that!! How neat!! ;)
    "Cutting Fruit Set—Wooden Play Food. Although this does not teach your child to prepare three-course meals for you, it is still awesome.". Crack. Me. Up!! ;-D
    "Play Money Set. Max gets a kick out of offering me $100 so he doesn't have to take a bath.". Hee, hee, hee.... ;-D
    As I mentioned before, my Mom is a HUGE fanatic of Melissa & Doug's products!! ;)
    --Raelyn


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  30. We would love the art stand. Melissa and Doug make great products. We love the food cutting, great to strenghten sweet little hands

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  31. I love Melissa and Doug! I don't have kids of my own but I've bough many of their toys for my nieces!

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  32. I love Melissa and Doug toys, especially the wooden food.

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  33. My son loves the puzzles with music. He has a hard time matching, but he is super motivated to match the motorcycle piece since that's his favorite sound!

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  34. These would be amazing for my special education students!

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  35. Love the puzzles!

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  36. We have the cutting food set, the latches board, and the travel bingo set. Everything Melissa and Doug is of such high quality, and I love the company and their values.

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  37. Absolutly adore the triangle crayons! My little one always ends up breaking crayons because she colors so hard. The case is perfect for travel and she loves that they are big enough to to not loose. We love Melissa and Doug!!!

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    1. Melissa....
      "My little one always ends up breaking crayons because she colors so hard.". I still occasionally break crayons while coloring.... And I'm 30!! Hee, hee, hee.... ;-D
      --Raelyn

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  38. I have been wanting and dying to buy the Hi-Rise Wooden Dollhouse and furniture set for my daughter, shes a huge role player and would have a blast with it. http://www.melissaanddoug.com/Hi-Rise-Preschool-Wooden-Dollhouse-and-Furniture-Set

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  39. I love the wooden puzzles, dolls, the shopping cart... All of them really!

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  40. I love all the puzzles we own for our grandchildren. One of them even makes noise! Theyhave lasted thru all the grandchildren!

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  41. We LOVE our cardboard blocks from melissa and doug! There is always a new house or construction site being built at our house with them!

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    1. Logan....
      "There is always a new house or construction site being built at our house with them!". That made me smile!! ;)
      --Raelyn

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  42. The cutting fruit set is awesome and I would love one for my little guy! Awesome giveaway! Thank you!

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  43. We love all Melissa & Doug products. My daughter has a large stuffed dog that's a favorite, and I know she'd love the art easel.

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  44. i have lots of their toys!! some of my favorites are their wooden puzzles and the magnetic dress up dolls

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  45. shopping cart is too cute
    gita prasad

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  46. My daughter's favorite has been the lizard shaped watering can. It inspired a lot of imaginative water play last summer.

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  47. Love their puzzles - so sturdy!

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  48. My boys would love the chore chart. They are getting into doing chores and getting rewarded. That would be awesome!

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  49. We have lots of melissa and doug toys we own and love, but i would say the pattern blocks are my three year olds favorite. They were a much bigger hit than i expected and keep her busy while i shower or cook dinner.

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  50. Love Melissa & Doug products for all my kiddos! The cutting veggies set looks fantastic! We have the cookie ones and they love it!

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  51. i love the play money set

    conanan2006@yahoo.com

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  52. Could really use for my kiddos! New speech pathologist!

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  53. We have so many M&D products that we love that it's hard to choose. I would probably have to go with the easel or the wooden cutting food.

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  54. I would love to win the hanging ship... it looks so cute and my kids would love love love it.....

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  55. I would love to get their alphabet stamp set for my son!

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  56. I would love the mailbox because my kids love everything with a key!

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  57. my girls would love Larissa 14" Princess Doll Mine to Love, they love dolls! :)

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  58. We have the mailbox, my kids love it!

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  59. my son LOVES the M&D ice cream scoop set!

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  60. (oh, and he loves it because he likes to pretend to eat the ice cream!

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  61. The play kitchens look like a lot of fun!

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  62. We love the reusable stickers.

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  63. We love the wooden play food sets and my oldest son is begging for the taco and burrito felt set! Super cute!

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  64. We love the abc wooden blocks because our kids never get tired of them.

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  65. Our son Jackson loves the Melissa & Doug wooden sushi cutting set!

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  66. Our son Jackson loves the Melissa & Doug wooden sushi cutting set!

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  67. I love the art easel. My daughter loves to draw everywhere (including the walls) so I think she'd love it.

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  68. love Melissa and Doug, all the way to stickers to their toys. Great stuff, there is so much we want to try but a few of our favorites...red cooking pots, doctor dress up, wooden food group, and the must have reusable puffy stickers!!!!

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  69. We love the puzzles. I love how they grow with my boys.

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  70. My daughter and I love the cookie set. I think it's great because she pretends to bake the cookies and serve them to me.
    kellywcu8888ATgmailDOTcom

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  71. I absolutely ADORE Melissa and Doug toys. They last forever, are great teaching tools, and are just plain cute! I would love to stock up on some fantastic toys for my son that we can save for future kiddos as well. Thanks for the opportunity to enter, crossing my fingers!

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  72. We LOVE Melissa and Doug, they last long and are a lot better quality than most toys, plus are very educational. Our favorites are the puzzles, our son goes nuts for them. Also the play food is amazing as welll

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  73. We have numerous wooden puzzles because they are his favorite. I love how durable, colorful and creative their products are.

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  74. We LOVE Melissa & Doug in our home! As a parent--it's the perfect line of children's toys!

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  75. These would be a dream come true for some of the littl'uns I know

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  76. I'm glad I'm not the only Melissa & Doug addict out there! ;)

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  77. we'd love to have the standard unit blocks. my daughter has some awesome soft plastic blocks, but now that she's older and not likely to be hurt by falling towers, we'd love for her to have a quality wooden block that is sturdier and easier to stack and build with.

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  78. would love to own Vehicles Maze Puzzle. looks fun and educational!

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  79. We love Melissa and Doug!! My son really loves the wooden cars with the wooden truck carrier. He also likes the puzzles. We were at the Building for Kids and noticed the train sets were Melissa and Doug. I thought that was really cool!

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  80. I love there felt food sets. They inspire so much creativity and open play and really get a child involved in Play time. I love them and so does my kiddo

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  81. brandy staats dominyMarch 11, 2014 at 10:07 PM

    We loved the stacking shape train, great quality and it provided hours of fun for my little guy!

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  82. We love Melissa and Doug at our house. We have a few of their puzzles. I am so interested in the one where you cut the fruit. My little man would love this and it would help him to learn to control that movement as well. Thank you for hosting such a great give away

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  83. My kiddo love the M&D shopping cart! She hauls everything from around, especially her play food and dolls.

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  84. My 3 year old is currently obsessed with the magnetic dress up sets. My 1 year old loves the chunky puzzles!

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  85. I've had my eye on their food cutting sets for a while - great way to encourage imagination and better my little guys hand/eye coordination.

    Rafflecopter: Aly M.

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  86. Elizabeth CrabtreeMarch 12, 2014 at 1:11 AM

    I have been wanting the latches board for a while, my local store ran out of them.

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  87. I'm not a parent- but I do work at a toystore that works closely with M&D. When a parent comes in looking for toys for a child with special needs, I always like to recommend their stuff (I've been known to sneak 'em in under the radar on my employee discount- like you said in your post about the $30 spoons, the last thing you guys need is to get hosed by a huge markup on stuff like toys).

    Oh! And if you're looking for even more uses for the M&D stuff, I've found a number of people have great success teaching math using the cutting fruit set.

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  88. I am definately going to order some triangle crayons. My little one needs them and I can't wait to test the durability

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  89. I am a huge fan of Melissa and Doug wooden puzzles. My daughter particularly likes the one with "fishing poles."

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  90. My son would love to have the Art Easel. He loves to draw, color and paint. I have really been wanting to get him one. I like that Melissa & Doug addresses toys that are best for different special needs situations. That is awesome!

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  91. We love Melissa & Doug toys... and it's not just because my first name is Melissa! Thanks Ellen - I had no idea that there was a Special Needs catalog. I will have to pour over that before someone's birthday this year... which is coming up!

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  92. I love their doll houses! Gender neutral and durable? Yes please!

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  93. We love the Melissa and Doug puzzles. As a mother and teacher I find them beneficial to my children's motor skills.

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  94. We have had four of the floor puzzles. The ABC train taught my son the abcs. Melissa nd Doug make the best products.

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  95. We love so many things from Melissa & Doug - big stuffed animals (we have the dragon and the big yellow lab), their awesome puzzles, play food, and more.

    My son had to have the dog - which many of my daughter's nurses have thought was real!

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  96. The very first Melissa & Doug toy we bought for our daughter is a wooden block train. She likes stacking the blocks on it and I will be using it to teach her colors. Our favorite M&D toy is a big wooden castle dollhouse she got for Christmas from her uncle.

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  97. love the puzzles, and would love to get some more!

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  98. My children have loved Melissa and Doug products for years. I'd love to in some for my grandson!

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  99. My kids like to play with the cookie set and the cutting foods set during pretend play in their kitchen.

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  100. We get so much use out of our Melissa & Doug products. They are strong enough to stand up to three young boys, and can be used in so many different ways!

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  101. We have always loved Melissa and Doug products. Our current favs are puzzels!

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  102. We love ALL Melissa & Doug toys, but a top favourite around my house are the food sets, especially the sugar cookies!! So fun, great for imaginations and they last forever!

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  103. I've heard great things about Melissa and Doug toys, as a mother to be I look forward to my child playing with his own!

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  104. I like the Cook's Corner Wooden Play Kitchen. This would be great for our daughter because she loves watching us cook.

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  105. Love the easel to work on upper extremity and core stability in a really fun way- kids love writing on the board! Love the puzzles too- especially the farm animals that give sound feedback when the puzzle piece is placed correctly.

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  106. I was first introduced to Melissa and Doug through gifts from family (my son's first gift was a puzzle set). Other examples of why we enjoy playing with their products:

    When I babysit my niece and nephew, we pull out the food set and "pretend" to have a picnic outside--coming up with all kinds of goofy food names (and of course producing a bunch of giggles).

    When my son turned 2, I realized how much he loved magnets so I bought an alphabet set and made a magnet board in his room to reinforce learning. I blogged about how much he loves it (and I smile when I hear him attempt each letter). I hope to use more of their magnets to teach numbers and life skills to him in the future.

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  107. We bought the latches board today. We have a few chunky puzzles, the animals rescue shape-sorter truck, the gear caterpillar, and many other toys that my LO LOVES!!
    I would love to try their cutting fruit set and sushi set. They looks so cute. M&D is amazing.

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  108. My daughter loves the wooden food playsets. She has the pizza, the sandwich set, cookie and sushi. She likes to make me meals

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  109. Gabriel LOVES Melissa & Doug, their products have been a God send <3

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  110. I love Melissa & Doug wooden puzzles. Stood the test of time with three kids, then I was able to consign them!

    Also love the weather magnet board, chore magnet board, and I think we had one other that was a monthly seasonal calendar. The BEST part was that the calendar last for all 3 of my kids as I was able to call M&D and ask for extra year magnets (2013, 2014, etc.).

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  111. We have a set of wooden "cuttable" food that is over a decade old that is still loved by my younger kids and my babysitting charges!

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  112. We love so many of their toys. magnetic dolls, coloring pages, mini shopping cart, chore board. oh so many!

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  113. We love the large wooden shape puzzle!

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  114. I think the M&D clock is the best one available for teaching time.

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  115. We have the "cookie" set. My SN son can set them on the pan on the Velcro and they won't fall off so that he won't get so frustrating. Love Melissa and Doug and all their high quality products!

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  116. My grand daughter would love the Deluxe Wooden Standing Art Easel

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  117. The Vehicles Maze Puzzle ~ my grand daughter has to wear a patch over one eye for a hour a day ~ while working on hand~eye coordination & fine~motor skills ♥

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  118. We just got a letter/word puzzle from Melissa & Doug. We're totally addicted to their toys!

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  119. Oh one that we have and LOVE is the Big Rig Building Truck Wooden Play Set! It is so great for Carters hand coordination and really gets him imagination going!

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  120. We have many Melissa and Doug toys and love the easel and whittle world school bus set most! They help teach imaginative play and the easel let's my son get creative while painting. We also have mini lessons on the easel.

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  121. I LOVE Melissa and Doug toys - we have many, and there are so many more I would love to get!!! One of my favorites is the latches board, but the play kitchen is probably the one that is in heaviest use at the moment!

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  122. Best toy recommendation for speech, soon we will be starting therapy, any suggestions that can help?

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  123. I (like everyone else) would love to win this. They make great toys that are even therpeutic!

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  124. I would love to get the magnetic car and truck puzzle for my son. He will for sure be getting some chunky M&D puzzles from the Easter bunny.

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  125. I think my son would love the scratch art portable light box, he is obsessed with lights!

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  126. My son loves all the Melissa and Doug. He loves the musical puzzles the best!

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  127. We love the Melissa and Doug puzzles with the huge knobs. Great for grasping! Also love the watercolor paint books!

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  128. We don't have them, but two I love are the shape blocks clock & our friend had a baby piano that we love

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  129. We have SOOOOO many Melissa and Doug toys at our house. One of our first, and still a favorite, is the music set. It's been great for different grips, getting hands to work independently and in different way. Our newest favorite is the pizza set!

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  130. We (and all of our son's therapists) love Melissa & Doug products!

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  131. I adore Melissa & Doug products. I'm a graduate student intern and will soon (in 9 weeks!) graduate with my degree in speech-language pathology. I use these toys so much at my current clinic but will soon be leaving to be on my own. I've been trying to stockpile therapy materials and games but, being a broke grad student, have had to limit my purchase of Melissa & Doug. This giveaway would be such a wonderful graduation gift and a way to continue helping my kiddos that need speech therapy services!

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  132. Melissa & Doug toys have helped my son learn valuable skills through play! We love them!

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  133. My 12 month old recently was diagnosed with CP. I happened to come across your blog on pinterest and am so glad I did. It's exciting to see that there are toys geared towards universal design and Melissa and Doug seems like an amazing company! I think my son would love the car puzzle you showed above.

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  134. we love the Melissa and Doug Easel we have. We would love to get one for our church. Thanks for the chance. We love the compartments for the paints and that it is also a chalkboard on one side and dry erase board on the other.
    toni marie caravello feimer
    reannenny at aol.com

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  135. Love, love, love M&D products! They are so durable. I would so enjoy adding some more to my speech therapy activities. Thanks!

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  136. I love these toys for Buddy. They have been so helpful with OT skills

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  137. I love their alphabet puzzles.

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  138. We have many products however my children would love the a Puppet Theater.

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  139. We have several of the Melissa and Doug sets. My boys love the Pizza cutter set.

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  140. We just got the magnetic ice cream set and my daughter loves making cones.

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  141. We love the chunky wood puzzles!!! Great for all ages ~

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  142. I would love to have the Standard Unit wooden blocks because they last forever and are fun for all ages. All of my kids would be able to enjoy them.

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  143. Would love the play money set for our kids!

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  144. My kids would love the play money! And my son would definitely get a lot out of the cutting fruit set. His OT would love that !

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  145. My daughter loves the big puzzles.

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  146. My grandson has the magnetic car puzzle. He loves it! My oldest granddaughter has the Princess sticker pad and coloring book that she is currently working on.
    maggietucker10 at yahoo dot com

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  147. Yes please! We have too many Melissa & Doug toys to count! I really like the spelling puzzles, which are a kit of wooden cut-out words and letter pieces that you use to fill them in. I've got my eye on that money set :) -Dana

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  148. Wonderful products. We love the magnetic paper dolls especially!

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  149. My son has used so many Melissa & Doug toys to help him play and learn. The cutting fruit and floor puzzles are family favorites. One of my son's is not able to walk on his own and not thrilled with a gait trainer, but at therapy when he gets that little metal shopping cart in front of him he loves to move and pretend shop. Would love one of our own. Thank you for all the innovative ways to play and develop!

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  150. My daughter has the Stack & Sort Board and plays with it every single day. I love that it is small and silent and teaches colors, shapes, counting and coordination.

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  151. My daughter loves all of the Melissa and Doug play food. I think her favorite is the magnetic condiment bottle set. I like that they are wooden, so they will last forever and not just break apart in a few months.

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  152. We love the sports floor puzzles that Melissa & Doug offers & I'd love to have one of their Deluxe Wooden Standing Art Easel for my grandson to enjoy & be creative. thanks

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  153. we have the fun fruit that you cut. My daughter got it for xmas and she loves it! I love their great quality

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Thanks for sharing!



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