Are Toys and Board Games Dead and Should We Grandparents Keep Them Alive This Holiday Season

toy portfolioEach year it seems that toys and games make up less and less of grandchildren’s birthday and holiday lists and electronics and apps make up more and more.

Fortunately, the parents of our grandchildren try to have a weekly game night so our grandchildren are introduced to classic board games. I think it is the parents of our grandchildren fondly remembering the games of their youth.  This Grandma loved playing Monopoly with the ten year old grandson our last visit.

Fortunately, our grandchildren play sports and play musical instruments so we can support their extra curricular endeavors with purchases during the holiday season, even if it is a special pair of swim goggles their parents think is unnecessary.

Fortunately, our grandchildren have collections to which we can contribute during the holiday season.  Pokémon collections keep getting passed down and enhanced.

We grandparents have a choice this holiday season.  We can intentionally help out the dying toy industry to our grandchildren’s benefit.  So many manufacturers and retailers we know well from our childhoods and our children’s childhoods are in trouble. Are toys dead?  From recent news, we grandparents should be worried about this.

Fortunately, our grandchildren seem to sometimes still pick up Legos. But, even Legos is in trouble.  On September 5, 2017, CNBC reported that “Lego announced plans to lay off 8 percent of its workforce as it reported a 5 percent fall in mid-year revenue. Lego said it will cut approximately 1,400 positions, the majority of them before the end of 2017.”

Toys R Us is in bankruptcy.  September 19, 2017, CNN reported: “Suffering from slumping sales and mountains of debt, Toys ‘R’ Us has filed for bankruptcy. … Late Monday, Toys ‘R’ Us announced that it scrounged up $3 billion in bankruptcy financing, which it plans to use to restructure the company, alleviate its debt burden and revamp its stores.”

Mattel Toys is in trouble.  “The company behind brands such as Barbie and Fisher-Price on Thursday reported that worldwide net sales sank 13 percent in the latest quarter compared to a year earlier. In North America, sales tumbled 22 percent, with about half of that decline related to the Toys “R” Us bankruptcy.”

We grandparents can use the holiday season 2017 to keep toys and board games alive for our grandchildren’s generation.  All over the news, we are hearing that brick and mortar department stores at every price point are adding toy departments for the holiday season.  The concern should be their pricing.

It is a good idea to subscribe to a few on line vendors of toys still around for sales and specials.

Young Explorers.

Young Explorers has great sales, and if you enter your email address for specials, you can take advantage of their frequent discounts.  They have categories that help in a search for toys and games, by award winning, by age.

Learning Express.

Learning Express has great selection, periodic sales which you can take advantage of by entering your email address for specials.  They also have categories that help in a search for toys and games, by award winning, by age.

Oppenheimer Toy Award Winning Toys.

This website is this Grandma’s go to resource for the best toys by age and interest, as well as books and videos.  They test the toys on children and are accurate in their assessments.  Our grandchildren play with their Platinum Award winning toys and games more than any other toys.

Yes, we grandparents want our grandchildren to play with any toys or games we spend our money on.  Yes, we do enjoy the classic games we grew up on or played with the parents of our grandchildren.  Yes, let’s work to keep toys and board games alive with our grandchildren’s generation this holiday season.

We can encourage the parents of our grandchildren to institute a game night.  We want the grandchildren, and their parents too, off electronics sometimes!

And, if we can, we can delegate the holiday gift list for our grandchildren to their parents.  This Grandma has the parents make a wish list with the grandchildren on Amazon, and ask them to include toys and board games.  I then just buy off their Amazon wish list for their holiday presents.

So, keeping toys and games alive for our grandchildren is an investment for us and a win-win.  We just have to remember that when we play board games with the grandchildren, they should win most of the time!  Let their parents be responsible for teaching what it feels like to lose.








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