Tickle Me Elmo | The Talking Elmo Doll That Won't Stop
Battery Operated Talking Toys In The House
Before I became a parent, I was always warned over and over again about trying to keep electronics, battery operated toys, and sound making toys out of the house. The reason behind this was that they'd drive me crazy and also because we'd churn through expensive batteries like nobody's business. Well, I'm 12+ months into becoming a parent, and I can tell you that we have 20+ noisemakers in the house all with batteries and all with repetitive soundtracks. If I'm in the shower, it's highly likely that I am humming a tune to one of these toys. However, the expense of batteries is softened by having an Ikea close by that offers affordable options for double and triple-A batteries.
Why bringing the talking Elmo doll into your house might be a bad idea
Well, this header is half and half deceiving. Most of the reasoning behind my slight disdain for Elmo is that he scared the bejeebers out of me one cold, winter night. I was at my parent's house in the middle of nowhere, super dark, cold, and snowy. My daughter Blake had just received her first Tickle Me Elmo for Christmas, and he was out of the packaging in the back seat of the car. I was rifling around to bring a bag of gifts into my parents home and all of a sudden I hear someone, or something talking to me! I felt like I jumped out of my skin, in those few seconds I thought I was going to be robbed or shot or something not so good! Well, it was the Tickle Me Elmo chatting away and thinking I was tickling him. I had bumped him while I was rifling through the car. So when I say it might not be the best idea, it's slightly unfounded, but also he still haunts me a bit, just like many of those battery filled toys.
Tickle me Elmo is a good addition to our toybox, but we still aren't over the moon about the little guy. While he teaches little Blakey to tickle and laugh, he isn't the best playmate. He is repetitive, a tad annoying and he doesn't have a lot of education depth. Blake, currently 12 months old, enjoys playing with him, but not consistently. Maybe that will change down the road! To the toy's credit, the box says 18months-4 years, so she has a lot of time to grow with him. One further small item is that he is relatively hard too, not just hard to read as in he has a good poker face, he does. What I mean is that because of his tickle mechanism, his core is fairly tough. No plushness there.
Why you might want to try Tickle Me, Elmo
So although the above paragraph probably sounds a bit negative, the report on Tickle Me Elmo is not all thumbs down. He is quite charming in his own way. Blake, our daughter, loves to laugh, so the fact that Elmo can laugh whenever tickled by Blake, is fun for her. He is relatively light and is easy to drag around for Blake, and his soft fur exterior helps compensate for the hard inner core. (As I write this she brought him up on my lap and rested her head on him so to his credit, he's got to be a little comfy.) His belly is also really reactive to her touch, which makes it easy for her to get right to tickling.
The price, our ratings, and Amazon ratings
As for price, you can currently get the Tickle Me Elmo Doll for $21.61 on Amazon with frustration free packaging. While we received the heavy frustration option for packaging, we would be okay with either choice. As for our ratings, you can get some further info in the above paragraphs. However, we'd likely rank it a 3.5 out of 5.0 based on the lack of consistent entertainment and learning integration. It teaches my daughter to tickle, and she has a good time. However it doesn't extensively teach her, and it certainly doesn't keep her attention for more than a few minutes at her current stage of life. And finally, as for Amazon ratings, reviewers give it a solid 4.0 out of 5.0. They seem to favor the look and laughter it provides, but they are left wanting a softer Elmo that offers a bit more depth than this guy. So would we say buy? For sure! He'd be a great addition to your family. Maybe wait until your little one is a year and a half old or so.
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