Janod Wooden Toys Review (with My Miracle Baby)

Product Review

If you are a wooden toys fan, you might have come across this French brand – Janod. It is founded by a French who focused on wooden games and toys.

If you are tired of electronic toys for your children, back-to-basic wooden toys with new creative designs might be good options. In the past, wooden toys are thought to be bland and boring compared to their brightly-colored and music-blaring counterparts. These days, well advised parents came to realised quality wood-feel toys are less jarring and stimulate creativity with a more wholesome approach. Perhaps this is influenced by the growth of Montessori teaching methods too .

My Miracle Baby – an online distribution website – carries Janod products as they pride themselves in selecting high quality goods for their customers. They kindly sent over some Janod toys for my 2 boys for reviews. These are some honest opinions on the 3 toys we received:

1) Janod – Redmaster Magnetic DIY Trolley (S$149)

This is a walking trolley which rolls on wheels and comes equipped with 21 accessories including 3 magnetic tools and a set of gears. Designed in France, it is recommended for 1-4 years old.

This is my sons’ favourite.

It comes in loose pieces and an adult’s help is needed to assemble them
All hands on the deck; especially Daddy’s hands. Eizac needs his yellow construction safety hat to work. Xi En is our foreman Open-mouthed smile
The finished product
Gears, screws and nuts on top of the push trolley
Magnetic tools in front and my happy engineers are ready to go! Smile

Verdict: Both my boys enjoyed this toy especially Eizac as he is 3+ years old and at the age where he loves dress-up and pretend-play. Personally, I find the whole trolley a little heavy and takes up space in our limited play area. My 2 reckless boys ramped it through my legs a few times when they got overly excited! Also, watch out for them trying to hammer or screw your walls/TV/windows! Otherwise, the quality is very well made and sturdy to last a few generations. Open-mouthed smile

2) Janod – Magnetic World Puzzle English Version (S$129)

This is a huge magnetic board with many magnetic puzzle pieces that made up the world map. There are continents, countries and animals to identify. It is great for older children to learn some geography and the younger ones to practise their fine motor skills.

Janod Magnetic World Map from Greenland to Antarctic
Xi En enjoyed identifying the various countries and continents.

Verdict: This is my favourite as I am attracted by the educational value and the intricate little details of the puzzle pieces. Eizac lost patience after a few minutes of putting the puzzle together. Xi En was more conscientious in learning while playing. This will be a good present for older children who are 4 to 7 years old. Note that the board is really heavy. It is probably more ideal to nail or stick it to the wall but I found some pieces dropping off easily; possibly the magnetic strength weakening over time. The map didn’t stick well to the board either but we solved that easily with superglue. Open-mouthed smile

3) Janod – Body Magnet (S$59.90)

This is a magnetic board with body cards and 76 magnetic body parts for young ones to explore the muscular, skeletal, organs system and the basic body parts. There are cards with 9 different languages and a pointer stick for you to play teacher.

Janod Body Magnet
4 English cards (Muscles, Organs, Skeletal and Basic Body Parts) are provided together with 8 other different languages if you understand French, Italian and other European languages.
Eizac following the pictorial guide to piece the body parts together.
Xi En preferred mix-and-match.
This is one intense work.

Verdict: I liked the educational value of this toy. Eizac enjoyed the jigsaw puzzling part of this toy. He could piece together all the 76 pieces without much help. However, I find the other language cards quite useless since we don’t know any other European languages. Clearly, this is a product designed for sale in Europe as there aren’t any Mandarin nor other Asian languages in the other cards. Nonetheless, quality is well made.

Overall review: As a mummy of 2, I came to realise wooden toys are really lasting and can withstand hard knocks from rough handling. Wooden toys are more rustic and give the young ones a more grounded approach to toys. It is a bonus that toy markers made them with educational values these days. But because they are made to last, wooden toys are so heavy too! I find it difficult to store them properly. But if you have space for a few pieces of good quality wooden toys, you might like to try out Janod selections. Prices are not cheap given that the designs originate from France, but I like their vast variety of old-school-new-creativity products. The jigsaw puzzles and train sets look good too!

Good news: If you are keen to buy a Janod wooden toy for your child or as a present, here’s a special 15% discount promo code to share for all Janod products for the month of May. Simply enter “15%-EM” at the check out; this is effective till 31st May 2016. Janod’s selections on My Miracle Child can be found here: http://www.mymiraclebaby.com.sg/janod/

My Miracle Baby distributes and sells products which have been specially curated to cater to new parents and their babies. You will find brands here which are not commonly found in the mainstream shops. Have a look through the brands they carry and support local enterprise if you can. Smile They cater more for pregnant mummies, new borns to toddlers.

Brands Page

BMP brand logoBellyBuds brand logoComfi brand logoErgo Pouch brand logoFedora brand logoGaksimil

Janod brand logoKaloo brand logoSwaddle brand logoScoot n pullSwimava brand logoUpspring brand logoTrumpette brand logo

Giveaway Time

My Miracle Baby is kindly sponsoring 5 pieces of Janod – I Wood Stackable Turtles for 5 winners. These adorable turtles have 3 interlocking pieces each to learn about shapes and colors. They are made of wood and painted using water-based paints. Dimensions: 20.5 cm X 20.5 cm X 5 cm. Suitable for kids from 18 months onwards.


Here’s how you can win one of the above:

1) Show us some support by “Liking” this blog’s Facebook Page – Claude Dambreville – if you have not already done so. Thank you.

2) Likewise, “Like” our sponsor – My Miracle Baby’s Facebook Page.

3) Leave a comment on Claude Dambreville Facebook page or Instagram account (about this post) sharing with us who are you planning to give this toy to and share with us one tip on how you keep toys tidied at home. (I need some tips so this is a selfish question! please help me. Open-mouthed smile)

All the best!

Terms and Conditions:

1) Winners will be picked randomly. If a winner didn’t response to my private message by 48 hours, another winner will be picked.

2) Colors of turtles will be given randomly.

3) This giveaway is only open to residents with a Singapore address.

4) Giveaway ends on 24th May 2016, 2359hrs. Results will be updated on this blog post.

Updated on 26th May 2016

Winners for this giveaway have been picked randomly from FB and IG comments and they are:

  1. growingwiththetans
  2. takenotakenoko
  3. weeqiweeqi
  4. cayleechan
  5. Jaslyn Chong

Congratulations! You have won for your little one a Janod wooden turtle! I will be sending you a private message or an email. Please kindly response within 48 hours.

Thank you for supporting the giveaway and for reading! 🙂

If you have enjoyed reading this post and will like first-hand updates on future blog posts, please subscribe to our email updates on the right hand column. Do connect with us on Facebook or Instagram where we share a little more on our daily lives. Thank you for coming by. See you around!

Shrek The Musical in Singapore plus a GIVEAWAY of Tickets worth $620!

For the first time in Singapore, we are going to see a grumpy green ogre “live in person”!

Shrek The Musical is coming to town and will be performing at the Marina Bay Sands in the June summer holidays.

Shrek the Musical

It had been a while since we last saw Shrek on the small and big screens. But he remains a favourite in various adaptions – I last saw Shrek featured in a Dora cartoon that Eizac was watching on the TV!

The famous Shrek originated from a picture book written in 1990 by William Steig as a monstrous ogre who leaves home to see the world and ends up saving a princess. Later on we know that he married the princess who gave birth to little ogre children! The name “Shrek” is derived from the Yiddish and German Shrek meaning “feat’ or “fright” : Source.

Shrek does look a little scary and frightening if you do not “know” him. But I think the storylines made him more funny like scary. Open-mouthed smile


Well, his famous “Shrek roar” come about only when he is angry, but it became a sort of entertainment to other characters in the show. Talking about roars, if you are planning to watch Shrek The Musical, here’s a way to get a free child ticket!

Just Roar Like Shrek! You can submit a video or a photo of yourselves or your children doing a roar #LikeShrek and upload it onto the official contest page. Once it is approved, you will receive a dedicated booking link with which you will receive a free child ticket with the purchase of an adult ticket from Marina Bay Sands (MBS) Ticketing.

For inspiration, check out Shrek’s famous roar here.

And more inspirations, check out my sons’ roars here. *I’m too shy to record my own roar. You can ask my sons about it; they hear it almost everyday*

About the production:

“Shrek The Musical is based on the Oscar Winning DreamWorks Animation film. As part of an international tour, it is coming to Singapore for the very first time and will be performing at the MasterCard Theatres, Marina Bay Sands from 8th to 19th June 2016. This live adaptation of the popular animation film brings hilarious story of everyone’s favourite ogre to the big stage. In a far away kingdom turned upside down, things get ugly when an ogre – not a handsome prince – shows up to rescue a feisty princess. Throw in a donkey that does not keep quiet, a villain with a short temper, a cookie with an attitude and over a dozen other fairly take misfits, and you’ve got the of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there’s one on hand and his name is Shrek.”



Season: 8th to 19th June 2016

Venue: MasterCard Theatres at Marina Bay Sands

Performance Times:

Wed to Fri (730pm)

Sat (2pm and 730pm)

Sun (1pm and 6pm)

Ticket Price: start from S$65 (excluding booking fee of S$4 per ticket)

Booking through:

Internet – www.MarinaBaySands.com/ticketing or www.sistic.com.sg

Phone – +65 6688 8826

In Person at – Marina Bay Sands Box Offices (Museum, Theatres, SkyPark, Retail Mall and Hotel Tower 1 Lobby)

Make_A_Move_with_Perry_Sook_as_Shrek_ Jeremy_Gaston_as_Donkey_and_Whitney_Winfield_as_Fiona_L_vR

Shrek The Musical is proudly brought to you by BASE Entertainment Asia in partnership with Marina Bay Sands Pte Ltd and MasterCard.

Come join us in having a “Shreking” good time in the summer holidays!

Updates! GIVEAWAY!

Thanks to the kind sponsors we have 2 sets of 2 Cat A tickets (total worth $620) for 2 sets of winners to enjoy the production on the opening day, 8th June 2016, 730pm! Each winner will receive 2 Cat A tickets so you can bring a friend/family member along! 

Simply follow the instructions below to enter the random draw:

1) Like both Claude Dambreville and BASE Entertainment Asia Facebook pages.

2) Leave a comment on the Shrek Musical Giveaway Facebook post sharing with us “Who do you want to bring along for Shrek The Musical at Marina Bay Sands and why?”. On the same comment, Tag 2 friends to share with them about Shrek The Musical. Sharing is caring. Smile 🙂

Optional step below to gain more entry points:

3) Follow @evelynneo on Instagram and repost/regram the post on Shrek The Musical Giveaway. Tag 2 friends along the way.

Important Notes:

Giveaway tickets are only valid for 8th June 2016, 730pm show. Please enter if you can make it for this timing. No changes are allowed.

This giveaway ends on 5th May 2016; 2359hrs. Thereafter the winner will be announced on this blog post.

Tickets are not permitted to be resold. Decision of the winners are final. If no reply is received with 3 days of announcing the winner, another winner will be drawn.

Please remember to leave your email address when you leave a comment on Facebook for verification and contact purposes.

All The Best!

 Updates on giveaway (6th June 2016):

Congratulations to Theresa Tay and Priscilla Quek for winning this giveaway – a set of 2 tickets each to Shrek The Musical on the opening night 8th June 2016! See you there!

Thank you everyone for the active participation and look out for more giveaways to come! 🙂

Disclaimer: Thanks to the kind tickets sponsorship, we cannot wait to catch the production. No further compensation is received. All photos are credited to Base Entertainment Asia. Videos of the mighty roars are copyrights of this blog. You may wish to tune down the volume. Smile 

If you have enjoyed reading this post and will like first-hand updates on future blog posts, please subscribe to our email updates on the right hand column. Do connect with us on Facebook or Instagram where we post more regular updates. See you around!

All in the months of Term 1

They say the children grows up really fast. And it is so true.

I always nag at my oldest boy: “You are already so ‘old’; you should know better than to do this (naughty behaviour/act).”

Then the next Facebook “moment flashbacks” reminded me that he was so small, so cute, so chubby, so mischievous before!

I guess this dilemma of wanting them to “grow up” and yet “don’t grow up too fast” will always remain a tussle in Mummy’s heart.

I am now a primary school kid’s mother. Aged. Promoted. Open-mouthed smile

Xi En eased in pretty well in primary school. We only knew that we were going to this school mid December last year and so there was a little rush to buy the uniforms and school books.

First day of school – “mandatory photo”. Smile

The school is a 20-25 mins drive from our place. And that kind of made the school bus option undesirable. The school bus operator initially said they don’t ply our area and later said they can do special arrangements at $150 to $180 (one way trip!).

Cutting the story short, I join the ranks of many parents to be the “designated chauffeur”. 4 times a day, to and fro, I drove. It isn’t the driving that drove me mad at times. It is other drivers and the traffic. When you get impatient, zombie-like and running-late parents zipping around the school area, tempers rise and people flout traffic rules. That is my main grouse – driving into unreasonable drivers and also facing the madding morning traffic jams.

Awaiting keys to our new place so we can cut the journey shorter…..

Dislike morning traffic jams

Get past the above, I enjoy the rides with my boy. It is those times that we chat about anything and everything.

We discussed about the new developments in Bidadari area; told him it was a cemetery; Mummy used to attend school near there; Bidadari meant “fairy” or “angel” in Malay. “What’s a cemetery?” It goes on… And many other questions like: “why the clouds looked so near yet so far?”

He is entertaining on most days. Smile

If you ran out of questions to ask your kids after school, this is a good guide. My favourite leading question will always be “anything interesting happened today?”

Term 1 in school ended easy with him making some new friends and enjoying school. Save that one occasion when I forgotten to pick him up from school, all went well.

It was early dismissal day, but this mother clearly forgotten so and was late by 1 hour.

Thankfully, I think God knows. Just a day before that, we went through what he should do if Mummy is ever late to pick him up. And the secret password that we set up in the event that he is approached by strangers who said they are there to pick him up. That fateful day Mummy was an hour late, he waited till the school gate was closed and asked a teacher to help to call me (I ignored the call because I was working!). Failing to reach me, he went to the general office and asked the kind receptionists to call me again. I was in a frantic when I received the call and realised it was early dismissal day. It was only the 2nd week of school when this happened. Mummy saved the day with a Mcdonald’s lunch treat. Open-mouthed smile

Guilty Mummy’s treat

From then on, I followed a friend’s suggestion to set alarms on my phone to pick him up.

So much for a chauffeur’s day of work. Smile with tongue out

Now I understand why my friends said that primary one is a honeymoon. It is. At least term 1 was.

It helped that his kindergarten already started with some simple spelling and Ting Xie; coupled with the additional Chinese help he needed at an enrichment centre.

But his handwriting is horrible and he doesn’t seemed to think it is anything important. Daddy thinks that maybe he just has the handwriting of a doctor.

We started a reward chart for good behaviours and pro-activeness. It still worked for his age. His rewards range from buying an automatic sharpener to a tornado/spinning mop (he liked that innovation!) to an 1 hr usage of iPad to the newest Snap Circuit. So far, we do not have enough stars to buy a mop yet. Working on it.

We just had the first Parents-Teachers-Meeting (PTM). All good except he could probably work on socialising more with his friends.

His favourite recess food is noodles soup. Because there are fish balls and salty soup. Confused smile

It’s a consolation that at least he picks healthy drinks such as Milo or Yakult Active.

We have done away with homemade bentos and snacks. Not because his Mummy is lazy. But because he prefers hot food and the portions he eat are frightening small. So to save me from the heartache of throwing away left-over home cooked wonders, he decided that canteen food is good for him.

So much for me trying to score some Bento-Making-Mummy cookie points. *_*

p.s: thank you to all my friends who suggested where I can buy different kind of lunch boxes. I found good varieties in Sistema and Toyogo if you are looking. Smile

He gets $2 a day for recess time; an amount recommended by the school. For the records, it is sufficent to buy a meal + a drink. Most meals will cost between $1 to $1.50. Technically he only gets $1.90 per day. Thanks to intelligent mummies’ blogs, I sorted out his weekly pocket money in a box with a “SHARE” and a “SAVINGS” category. Initially, the “share” category was “tithe” but he didn’t quite grasp the concept of tithing yet. After reading an article in the newspaper, I realised “share” is easier to explain to young children. Now he set aside 10 cents per day for sharing with others such as the church, needy, the blind music busker he saw at the hawker centre and etc.

Hopefully this small act will teach him more on sharing and giving.

Xi En’s weekly pocket money box

So far so good.

That’s for me and him. We have kind of assimilated to primary school life with adjustments to go along the way of course.

Looking forward to teenage-hood?! Open-mouthed smile

How was your Primary One schoolers’ term 1?

Lunch treat at a cafe on our last day of Term 1.
I might draw this at home – for me; not him.