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Battery operated toy trouble shooting guide

11 Jul

You’ve just purchased that REALLY GREAT singing, dancing, walking, talking and jiggling toy off of eBay, but when you tried to play with the toy it did NOTHING!!

Don’t despair, TROUBLE SHOOT! While all battery operated and electronic toys can stop working for no explicable reason, many times it is a simple problem that can be easily remedied.

Here is your basic trouble shooting guide:

  1. Insert BATTERIES. Here at Katrina’s Toys we ship our toys without batteries. We do this for many reasons: it’s against USPS rules to ship batteries, it adds unnecessary weight to shipping.
  2. Batteries installed wrong. Make sure the batteries are in the right slots, facing the right direction, and completely seated in their little slots.
  3. Old Batteries. Try some fresh batteries. Or if you’re using some cheap brand, try a different brand. If using re-chargeables , make sure it is fully and properly charged.
  4. Battery compartment lid is not screwed on snuggly. Some toys will not work unless that lid is re-installed. Using a screw driver, gently hand tighten those screws to re-install the lid.
  5. Check your on/off switches. Some toys have actual on/off switches located most often on the voicebox or on the battery compartment. However, some toys are activated by light, by voice, some by squeezing sensors located in feet, tummies, ears etc. Please contact your seller if you are not sure how to “turn-on” your toy.
  6. Re-set the reset button. This will be a tiny hole, most likely located on the battery compartment lid. Insert a paper clip end or a pencil tip and give it a little poke.
  7. Corrosion: If the toy has been sitting for a long time with batteries stored inside or the battery compartment has been exposed to moisture and air there could be some corrosion. In addition to replacing the batteries, clean the battery contacts. I have had good results with q-tips and plain old windex. For heavy corrosion you can also try a baking soda paste.

These tips will solve most problems. However, sometimes toys will stop working for absolutely no reason at all. They will require more advanced repair.

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Busy World and Busy Town of Richard Scarry

26 Apr

busy busy world

busy busy town

Busy busy Town by Richard Scarry

Scarry’s most famous series of books was about Busytown. While his books are largely populated by common animal species such as cats, rabbits, domestic pigs, and mice, he proved to be quite adept at giving human characteristics to a seemingly endless number of creatures. Beavers, raccoons, hippopotamuses, rhinoceroses, owls, bears, goats, elephants, foxes, gorillas, crocodiles, dogs, wolves, anteaters, hyenas, baboons, chickens, worms, and insects were just some of the other animals to be featured in Scarry’s works. Many of his later illustrations feature characters in traditional Swiss clothing, such as lederhosen, and show architecturally correct drawings of half-timber houses. Examinations of drawings featuring mechanical devices, such as the rigging on a sailboat, also show that they were drawn with accuracy. His books have been popular with children throughout the world. Over 100 million copies of his books have been sold, and they have been translated into 30 languages.

The Busy World of Richard Scarry is a animated Children’s show which  aired from 1993 to 1996, first on Showtime, later on Nickelodeon, and ran for 65 episodes. The television series was based on the Busy Town books.



Lowly Worm

Although the books contain a wide assortment of characters from different countries and backgrounds, there are some who appear in most of the stories as stars or guests making cameo appearances. For example, Huckle Cat, Lowly Worm and Sergeant Murphy often appear in the illustrations even if they are not mentioned in the text.


The Characters have been made into various toys, dolls, bears & puppets. Richard Scarry merchandise are very popular amongst children!

Katrina9799s Household Variety shop specializes in toys of all types: plush, fast food, Disneyana, dolls, bears, actions figures, puppets & more! We have 1000′s of great toys for sale! Stop by and see what treasures we have for you! Katrina9799′s is the place for toy collectors!

A great place to find information on your favorite toy. We discuss toys of all kinds featuring information, photos, and video! Thanks for visiting!

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 We invite you to visit our youtube channel Katrina9799′s Toy Channel. We feature videos of toys that talk, sing, move and dance! All the toys featured are toys that are, (or have been), available in our vintage toy store Subscribe today!

Peppermint rose dolls by Mattel

11 Apr

Peppermint Rose was a line of dolls and plush toys  and figurines, made by Mattel and American Greetings in the early 1990s. It also inspired an animated half-hour special that was made in 1993, aired syndicated and released on video.

The line consisted of four dolls:

  • Peppermint Rose – Leader of the group, dressed in pink and white. In the animated special, her full name was Rose Richards and she was a typical stereotype of a valley teenage girl.
  • Miss Vanilla Daisy – Brunette, dressed in white with assorted colors. In the animated special, she was the smart-mouth tomboy.
  • Lemon Kiss Lily – Light brown haired girl in violet and lily-colored dress. In the animated special, her final name was Lemon Drop Lily.
  • Merry Mint Violet – African-American girl in deep purple and green dress. Other than the doll, she was included in the animated special but not in other products such as stickers, puzzles and cards.

“Discover a world of sweet scent-sations! Now girls can create candy-floral perfume they can wear! Two scented ways to play! Each 9 inch candy flower-themed doll comes with 12 floral scented and 12 candy scented Perfume Petals. Girls dissolve Perfume Petals in water to make real fragrance combinations they bottle and wear! Dolls join in the fragrant fun with 2 skirts – one floral scented and one candy scented. Girls layer both skirt looks to make luscious scent combinations. Peppermint Rose, Lemon Kiss Lily, Vanilla Daisy, and Merry Mint Violet dolls all have lovely long hair for lots of hair play, too! Dolls also include: basket to mix perfume, perfume bottle, doll fashion, hat, shoes.”

There were four dolls produced. Each one came with two fragrances, a rose comb, removable hat and a pair of shoes. The two fragrances were differently scented like the two parts of their names. For instance, Vanilla Daisy’s box reads:

“Magically make a Vanilla or Daisy perfume. Wear both for a floral and candy scent-sation!”


Complete set of Peppermint Rose dolls


 The plush toys were called Candy Blossoms.  They are large rabbit-like creatures with huge ears and flowers on their heads, they were sold as plush ‘teddy bears.’ There is a small compartment on the top of their heads that held a perfumed substance.

  • Lollipop Posey
  • Bubblegum Violet

Candy Blossom Lollipop Posey plush toy

Candy Blossom Bubble Gum Violet plush toy

The figurines were called Sweet Spray. They are much like the Candy Blossoms but sold as little figurines.

“Make your own sweet play perfume. Pour into Sweet Spray and mist on. Three adorable animal friends who spray candy-floral perfume! Each comes with 12 floral and 12 candy scented Perfume Petals girls dissolve in water to create sweet scents to wear. Girls simply pour water into rotocast animal atomizers, add “flowers,” fasten flower cap, and squeeze. Sweet Sprays have floppy fabric cars in candy-floral prints that coordinate with the dolls.”

Sweet Sprays atomisers were three plastic bunnies with large, floral printed fabric ears. They could be filled with the perfume provided and squeezed to mist out the scent.

  • Peppermint Posy
  • Bubblgum Daisy
  • Lemon Kiss Blossom

Sweet Spray Bubblegum daisy

Sweet Spray Peppermint Posey

Sweet Spray Lemon Kiss Blossom

Merry mint violet

Lemon Kiss Lily

Vanilla Daisy

peppermint rose

Katrina9799s Household Variety shop specializes in toys of all types: plush, fast food, Disneyana, dolls, bears, actions figures, puppets & more! We have 1000′s of great toys for sale! Stop by and see what treasures we have for you! Katrina9799′s is the place for toy collectors!

A great place to find information on your favorite toy. We discuss toys of all kinds featuring information, photos, and video! Thanks for visiting!

1980’s Wind in the Willows plush by Fiddler’s Elbow

30 Mar

1980’s Wind in the Willows plush by Fiddler’s Elbow

In 1981, Fiddler’s Elbow collaborated with Ariel Books to produce bean bag toys based on the classic children’s story The Wind in the Willows illustrated by Michael Hague. The toys were featured on the cover of the American Express Christmas catalog.

These are bean filled plush dolls all about 7” in height. They are meant to look like the illustrated versions depicted by Michael Hague.

Mr. Badger: He is a kind but lonely figure who simply hates society and crowds. He has a big black and white head and is strong. Mr. Badger is seen as the wise one who always advises and guides the other characters. He is friendly and hospitable as he takes care of those who come to house. He is the quiet, steady friend who prefers his own company but will also come and help if you need him. He is a good planner as he plans the attack to get back the Toad Hall from the Wild Wooders.

Mole: The Mole is a mild mannered, home loving animal. He is shy, hardworking and enjoys sunshine and loves the river. He is keen to swim and wants to learn how to row a boat. The rat teaches it a few things of the river. The Mole is happy and eager and readily learns how to swim and row a boat

Ratty: He is hardworking, relaxed, kind and friendly. He loves the river and teaches the Mole many things about the riverside. He teaches the Mole how to swim and row. Ratty enjoys the simple pleasures of food and gossip. He has a brown little face with whiskers, bright eyes, small ears and thick shiny hair. The Rat knows a lot about the river and many stories of life on the river which shows how knowledgeable he is. He even plans a picnic with the Mole and warns him about the Wild wood. The rat likes to sing songs and knows how to row a boat.

Rabbit and Rodent: Described as goof or a mixed lot.


Mr. Toad: He is the richest character and the owner of Toad Hall. Although he is good natured, he is impatient and likes adventure. He is always trying something new and gets bored quickly. He never learns from his mistakes. He is crazy about cars and wants to drive forever even though he does not want to take lessons. He is a reckless driver and has been twice to the hospital and at least three to four times has been arrested for dangerous driving. His interest develops from houseboats to caravans to motorcars. He drives like a madman, is rude to the police and is caught for stealing. He escapes from prison dressed as a washerwoman. His friends finally reform him and win back Toad Hall from the Wild Wooders. The toad is good hearted but thick headed. He is boastful, strong and fearless but once he changes his ways, he becomes more humble, more sensible, thriftier (spends less money) and soon forgets about cars.

The Wind in the Willows is the original version, written by Kenneth Grahame, published in 1908.

Sequels include:

In 1983 Dixon Scott published A Fresh Wind in the Willows, which not only anticipated Horwood’s sequels (see below) by several years but also includes some of the same incidents, including a climax in which Toad steals a Bleriot monoplane.

William Horwood created several sequels to The Wind in the Willows: The Willows in Winter, Toad Triumphant, The Willows and Beyond, and The Willows at Christmas.

Jan Needle’s Wild Wood was published in 1981 with illustrations by William Rushton (ISBN 0-233-97346-X). It is a re-telling of the story of The Wind in the Willows from the point of view of the working-class inhabitants of the Wild Wood. For them, money is short and employment hard to find. They have a very different perspective on the wealthy, easy, careless lifestyle of Toad and his friends.

To view the Wind in the Willows plush available for sale click here:

Katrina9799s Household Variety shop specializes in toys: Disneyana, dolls, bears, plush toys puppets, action figures & more! We have 1000’s of neat items ranging from 2 – 50 years old in the shop. Stop by today and see what treasures we have in store for you. Katrina9799s household variety shop – the place for toy collectors!

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Item of the week 3/28/11 Little tikes Toddle Tots

28 Mar

Have you seen these little guys and wondered who they were?

Lot of Little Tikes Toddle Tots for sale at

Click here to buy the above pictured Toddle Tot lot:

These little plastic dolls are made by Little Tikes. They are intended for toddlers aged 12 – 36 months of age. They are easy to hold yet big enough as to not present a choking hazard. Attention to detail on these plastic figurines aids toward pretend time play.

Little Tikes made several toys that are played with in conjuction with the Toddle tots to aid in pretend play such as a school bus, fire truck, dump trucks etc.

Fire Truck

dump truck

House and car


Toddle Tots  make brief appearances with Andy’s toys throughout Toy Story and Toy Story 2, and are mostly heard making a high pitched squeak. Many of the Tots include the Fireman Tots in their Toddle Tots Fire Truck, along with Cap Toddle Tot, Farmer Toddle Tot, Doc Toddle Tot, Hunter Toddle Tot, Painter Toddle Tot, Sailor Toddle Tot and a Shriner Toddle Tot in a little red car.

Katrina9799s Household Variety shop has 1000’s of toys for sale such as the Little Tikes Toddle Tots lot featured in this article. We specialize in Disneyana, toy, dolls, bears, puppets and more! Stop by the shop and see what treasures we have for you!

Item of the week 3/11/11 vintage weebles!

11 Mar


1973 Weebles

Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down!

 Weebles is a trademark for several lines of children’s roly-poly toys originating in Hasbro‘s Playskool division on July 23, 1971. Shaped like eggs with a weight at the fat, or bottom end, they wobble when pushed, but never fall completely over, hence the name and the slogan “weebles wobble, but they don’t fall down.” Some Weebles were designed to look like humans. The “Weebleville” series of 2004 and 2005 looked more like anthropomorphic animals, but the “Storybook World” series of 2006 has returned to more humanlike faces for the figures.

The popular catchphrase, “Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down”, was used in advertising during their rise in popularity in the 1970s and during the relaunch in the 2000s.

A wide range of accessories were available for the Weebles including vehicles, buildings and furniture. Some sets had a theme to them, such as the Weebles circus set.

1987 Playskool Weebles


Please visit katrina9799s household variety shop. We specialize in vintage toys, dolls, bears, Disneyana, Warner Brothers & much more!


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Why buy vintage toys? 7 great reasons…….

6 Mar


1. Save money

Buying used toys is a great way to save money while satisfying your child’s needs at the same time. Buying at bargain prices mean that you can get more for less, without sacrificing quality.

2. Increased variety

Buying used toys exposes you to a great variety that you will not otherwise see. Why not buy new ones? Actually, buying new toys can be pretty predictable, especially if you are looking at the latest arrivals. This is even more true when you are looking at popular brand names. You never know if you may come across something rare when you look at used toys. Remember that these are likely to be toys that are not manufactured any more. The variety that you are presented with will be less predictable and hence; more interesting.

3. Searching for great used toys is FUN

Have you ever browsed the hundreds of pages of toys on eBay and other lesser known shopping sites such as Bonanza? Wow! I could literally look for days and days! Even if you are focused on one type of item such as liddle kiddle dolls-you will have an incredible amount of fun just window shopping!

4. Good for the environment

Whenever you buy a used item you are literally saving an item out of the land-fill. This always feels good! How will we save mother earth? One way is by using our resources wisely and making good items last as long as possible.

5. Replace missing pieces to your child’s favorite toy or game

Is your child heartbroken because one of their favorite toys, that is in otherwise great condition, is missing a part or one of its accessories? The variety of toys in the on-line marketplace especially is so vast that you definitely can locate another model to ‘rob’ parts from to complete your child’s toy once again!

6. Re-live your childhood memories

Replacing that toy that held the fondest and most fuzzy feelings can be very satisfying!

7. Completing a collection

Starting a vintage collection can be fun! The more obscure the better as the thrill is always in the hunt! From garage sales, craigslist, thrift stores, eBay and other lesser known online shopping sites that you can find via google-the thrill is always in the hunt!!!


Katrina9799s Household Variety shop is a great place to buy vintage toys. With an inventory of over 1400 vintage toys, you are sure to find what you are looking for! 


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buy vintage toys today

Lead poisoning in children……a serious problem.

21 Jan

It used to be that only parents who lived in dwelling built prior to 1978 had to worry about their children being exposed to lead paint. Then in 2007 Mattel, the largest toy manufacterer in the world, announced that they were recalling 10.5 million toys because of lead based paint.

Lead is toxic if ingested by young children.  According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, as many as one out of 11 children in the United States have high concentrations of lead in their bloodstream. Lead gets into the human body in a number of ways, primarily when people touch surfaces that have been painted with lead paint.  Lead contamination in children can cause a variety of health problems, from headaches and hearing problems to brain damage and behavioral problems.In children, lead poisoning can cause irreversible brain damage and can impair mental functioning. It can retard mental and physical development and reduce attention span.

Children can be exposed to lead in numerous ways. If they live in a dwelling built prior to 1978, the paint in the home will be high in lead. Eating paint chips is one way young children are exposed to lead. It is not the most common way that consumers, in general, are exposed to lead. Ingesting and inhaling lead dust that is created as lead-based paint “chalks,” chips, or peels from deteriorated surfaces can expose consumers to lead. Walking on small paint chips found on the floor, or opening and closing a painted frame window, can also create lead dust. Consumers can also generate lead dust by sanding lead-based paint or by scraping or heating lead-based paint.

Lead based paint used in the manufacter of the toys that they play with is the other main exposure-and for many children the primary exposure. The primary methods of transfer of lead paint in toys to our children include touching lead paint surfaces and then putting their fingers in their mouths.

All children should be screened for lead poisoning. Because the early symptoms of lead poisoning are easy to confuse with other illnesses, it is difficult to diagnose lead poisoning without medical testing. Early symptoms may include persistent tiredness, irritability, loss of appetite, stomach discomfort, reduced attention span, insomnia, and constipation. Failure to treat children in the early stages can cause long-term or permanent health damage.

The current blood lead level which defines lead poisoning is 10 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood. However, since poisoning may occur at lower levels than previously thought, various federal agencies are considering whether this level should be lowered further so that lead poisoning prevention programs will have the latest information on testing children for lead poisoning. Their are effective treatments for lead poisoning available once a child is diagnosed with lead poisoning.

Lead poioning prevention includes:

1. Have the painted item replaced.

You can replace a door or other easily removed item if you can do it without creating lead dust. Items that are difficult to remove should be replaced by professionals who will control and contain lead dust.

2. Cover the lead-based paint.

You can spray the surface with a sealant or cover it with gypsum wallboard. However, painting over lead-based paint with non-lead paint is not a long-term solution. Even though the lead-based paint may be covered by non-lead paint, the lead-based paint may continue to loosen from the surface below and create lead dust. The new paint may also partially mix with the lead-based paint, and lead dust will be released when the new paint begins to deteriorate.

3. Have the lead-based paint removed.

Have professionals trained in removing lead-based paint do this work. Each of the paint-removal methods (sandpaper, scrapers, chemicals, sandblasters, and torches or heat guns) can produce lead fumes or dust. Fumes or dust can become airborne and be inhaled or ingested. Wet methods help reduce the amount of lead dust. Removing moldings, trim, window sills, and other painted surfaces for professional paint stripping outside the home may also create dust. Be sure the professionals contain the lead dust. Wet-wipe all surfaces to remove any dust or paint chips. Wet-clean the area before re-entry.You can remove a small amount of lead-based paint if you can avoid creating any dust. Make sure the surface is less than about one square foot (such as a window sill). Any job larger than about one square foot should be done by professionals. Make sure you can use a wet method (such as a liquid paint stripper).

4. Reduce lead dust exposure.

You can periodically wet mop and wipe surfaces and floors with a high phosphorous (at least 5%) cleaning solution. Wear waterproof gloves to prevent skin irritation. Avoid activities that will disturb or damage lead based paint and create dust. This is a preventive measure and is not an alternative to replacement or removal.

5. Survey your Child’s toys. Remove and dispose of any toys that have been recalled.

These lists can be found here:

You may also consider buying toys manufactered in the United States or Europe where safety standards are high. Due to low costs 80% of toys sold in the USA are made in China. One of the ways that China keeps costs low is to use cheaper lead-based paints. Though they make promises to improve health and safety after the huge recalls, many factories eventually go back to the cheaper materials because of the huge profits.

Here are links for toys made in the United States:

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Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and his assistant Beaker

11 Jan

Did you grow up watching Jim Henson’s Muppet show? I believe it was on Sunday evening about 7:00 pm. I eagerly awaited and watched each episode!

Do you remember Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and his faithful assistant Beaker? Not sure? Let me refresh your memory with the following video clips:

Dr. Bunsen Honeydew

Dr. Bunsen Honeydew is the resident scientist on The Muppet Show, and host of the Muppet Labs sketches. In season one of The Muppet Show he worked alone, but in season two, his assistant Beaker was added to the show. Bunsen is always eager to show off his latest scientific discovery, but his excitement about progress tends to render him short-sighted. Beaker usually ends up being harmed by Dr. Honeydew’s inventions. Bunsen Honeydew’s name comes from the scientific instrument called the Bunsen burner, and the shape of his head, which looks like a honeydew melon.



Beaker is a Muppet character from The Muppet Show. He is the shy, long-suffering assistant of Dr. Bunsen Honeydew, and is likewise named for a piece of laboratory equipment, although his shape more closely resembles a Graduated cylinder.Beaker is a magnet for misfortune; his appearances typically involve him being blown up, electrocuted, eaten by large monsters, or losing body parts. Beaker communicates in a nervous, high-pitched squeak that sounds like “Mee-mee-mee mee”. Occasionally, Beaker was able to take revenge, particularly a segment in which he inadvertently made several copies of himself and spent the rest of the episode chasing Honeydew around the theater.

We have many Muppets characters including Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and Beaker that are pictured above in our toy shop. Please click on the following link to browse all of our Jim Henson toys:

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We have just joined Facebook!

8 Jan

We are excited to announce that Katrina9799s Household Variety Shop has just joined facebook!

This will be a great place for all of our loyal repeat customers and our new customers alike to stay informed of all the newest toys to be listed. It will also be a great place for our customers to communicate not only with us here at the toy shop, but with each other!

So cheers to all of our fellow toy lovers and collectors! Please find us on Facebook, Katrina9799s household variety shop

And please press the like button!

Click here:!/pages/Katrina9799s-Household-Variety-Shop/170577052984040 

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