Tag Archives: Stim Toys

Stim Toy Review: Smencil Buddies Pencil Case


Image Description: an image of a Smencil Buddies Pencil Case (watermelon flavour), it’s a teal-green pencil case with eight rows across of raised bumps decorating the outside of the pencil case. Attached to the zipper is a small decorate key-ring that resembles a slice of watermelon with a smiley face on it.


Image Description: an image of a Smencil Buddies Pencil Case (rainbow sherbet flavour), a bright-pink pencil-case with eight rows across of raised bumps decorating the outside of the pencil-case. Attached to the zipper is a small decorate key-ring that resembles an ice-cream cone (it has three colours: pink, green and orange) with a smiley face.

Item: Smencil Buddies Pencil Cases

Category: Review/Feedback

Cost: AU $10.00 (Shipping Fees: AU $7.99) per pencil-case

Store: While I bought my pencil cases from eBay, I can’t say I recommend eBay as a reliable option for this item, however, there are other purchasing options:
Scent Co. – $9.99 (Shipping Fees: $5.99) = $15.98 total (not sure if this is in US$ or AU$)
Amazon – $15.49 (Shipping Fees: Free Shipping)
You can also use your Amazon account to purchase items from the Scent Co. website

My Location: Australia

Review:
I was planning on using these items as part of my Diverse Reading Challenge Giveaway, but as they turned out to be scented items, I decided against it. The problem with scented items is that there’s just too much risk and variation (what I find enjoyable may just give someone else a headache), however, I figured I may as well do a review of these anyway.

This is how wide it is:
Image Description: a pale-white hand holding  one end of a bright-pink pencil-case with eight rows across of raised bumps decorating the outside of the pencil-case. The image is showcasing how wide the pencil-case is, which is 10.5 mm wide.

This is what it looks like on the inside:
Image Description: a pale-white hand holding  one end of a bright-pink pencil-case open so that the viewer can see the inside of the pink pencil-case, it has the eight rows of indented bubbles across one side of the pencil-case.

For comparison purposes, this is my Hoopla Ice-cream pencil case:
Image Description: Hoopla Sweet Collection Stationery Pencil-case. The pencil-case is pink and has clip-art pictures of an ice-cream-on-a-stick with a smiley face, a doughnut-with-pink-icing also with a smiley face and an ice-cream-cone with blue-gelato and a smiley face. There are also a single cloud and a rainbow.

The Ice-cream pencil case is reasonably sized (by my standards) and it contains a rainbow collection of pens I bought from Daiso and a collection of glitter pens and metallic gel pens I bought from Aldi.
Image Description: The insides of the Hoopla Sweets Collection pencil-case. It’s pink with a couple of sections of netting to separate the two halves of the pencil-case. Within the netting sections are a rainbow collection of pens, glitter pens, and metallic gel pens.

While I managed to squeeze all those pens into the Rainbow Sherbet pencil case, the result was a little concerning, and it looked like it would explode any minute.
Image Description: an image of a Smencil Buddies Pencil Case (rainbow sherbet flavour), a bright-pink pencil case with with eight rows across of raised bumps decorating the outside of the pencil case. Attached to the zipper is a small decorate key-ring that resembles an ice-cream cone (it has three colours: pink, green and orange) with a smiley face. In this particular image, the pencil case has been filled with the rainbow collection of pens from the previous photo, which is causing the pencil case to bulge in a rather concerning matter

So, as a pencil case, I would probably consider it too small (but it this could just be me), however, it’s size should make it okay to use as a Stim Toy Case, but due to the fact that it’s a scented item and thus not recommended for public use due to chemical sensitivities, I wouldn’t consider it practical.

But it feels so good to touch, the knobbly parts are great to run your fingers over, and I also enjoy the smooth side as well. I really like the Rainbow Sherbet one, and I’m probably going to keep it for myself, despite the fact that I know it’s completely impractical.

If you’re interested in tactile pencil cases or coin purses that aren’t scented, I would be happy to recommend Yoobi Fuzzy Pencil Cases (they come in blue, purple, pink, green, and aqua) and Yoobi Fuzzy Coin Purses (they come in aqua, pink, blue, and green). In Australia, you can buy these items from their website or from Officeworks, although pricing does vary depending on location.

Stim Toy Review: Starry Night Fidget Spinner


Image Description: a blue fidget spinner inside it’s box, which is purple and decorated with white dots that resemble stars, there is a white bar-code stuck across the front of the box.


Image Description: a blue fidget-spinner decorated with white dots that resemble stars

Item: Fidget Spinner – Blue Starry Sky

Category: Review/Feedback

Cost: AU $4.09 (Shipping Fees: Free Shipping)

Date of Purchase: 29/05/2017

Date of Delivery: 09/06/2017

Store: Banggood (China)

Location: Australia

Review:
I bought this for Novel Research purposes (it seems like the type of stim toy that James would have), however, I was also curious to see what kind of quality Banggood’s Fidget Spinners were. Kim acquired on my behalf a plain blue spinner, a blue-camo spinner and a black batman spinner, and while the blue spinners are great and work fine, the batman spinner is rougher and less smooth. While my smoothest spinner is my green and silver fidget spinner, however, the Starry Night spinner is just as smooth as my other blue ones and works just as well. I’m actually rather happy with my Starry Night Fidget Spinner, however, I believe the postage could possibly be improved (there’s not much padding between the packaging and the fidget spinner), I will have to order more just to make sure, quality control purposes and such (Mwuhahahaha).

Stim Toy Review: Glow In The Dark Tangle


Image Description: a Glow In The Dark Tangle made of transparent yellow plastic loosely coiled up together on top of a purple sleeping bag.
Image Description: a Glow In The Dark Tangle made of transparent yellow plastic spread out so that it takes the form of a small slightly lopsided circle.

Item: Glow In The Dark Tangle

Category: Review/Feedback

Cost: GBP $1.88 or AU $3.41 (Price includes Shipping Fees)

Date of Purchase: 29/04/2017

Date of Delivery: 23/05/2017

Store: Ebay UK

My Location: Australia

Review – My Problems with the GITD Tangle:
~Problem 1: While I don’t expect the Tangle to glow neon-bright, the Glow In The Dark element (in my opinion) is unacceptably weak, and it only became acceptably bright when I put the Tangle directly on top of a Lamp and left it there for a couple of hours (this is because I forgot about it and, as a safety precaution, I don’t recommend people do this). Due to the weakness of the glow, I was also unable to take photographs of as well, so this could be purely a subjective thing and I’m sorry I can’t provide more information on this.

~Problem 2: As you might be able to guess from the picture up the top, the Tangle links are very loose, in fact, the tangle is so loosey-goosey that the moment I coil it up and put it down, it starts unravelling. As I have a personal preference for stiffer or tighter Tangles, this may just be a problem for me, but I felt I should mention it.

~Problem 3: The tangle itself feels greasy and I find this really off putting. I feel as though I would be willing to tolerate the loose links and sub-par glowing, but I truly dislike the greasy/oily coating on the tangle, which makes me want to wash my hands straight after I handle it or avoid handling it altogether (which sort of defeats the purpose of purchasing the item).

All in all, I honestly can’t recommend this particular Tangle, however, it cost less than AU $5, so I’m guessing that this simply an occupational risk of purchasing from the cheaper end of the Stim Toy Spectrum.

Links:
~Stim Toy Box: Glow In The Dark Tangles by Mod Rainbow
~Stim Toy Box: Glow In The Dark Tangles by Mod K.A.
~Eldritch Esoterica: GITD Tangle Response

Things Kim Has Made: Scented Vial Necklaces


Image Description: a title-picture with four black sewing-buttons in each corner, in the centre of the picture is the text “Things Kim Has Made” in rainbow word-art text.

~Stim Toy Box: DIY scented vial necklace tutorial

For my Birthday, Kim made me a Scented Vial Necklace, here’s an image of it.
Image Description: a small glass-vial with a plastic-stopper in the top, it has two-loops of dark-blue cord threaded through the small hole at the top of the stopper. The contents of the small glass-vial are Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died dark-blue, coated in white glitter and vanilla essential oil has been added to it.
It may not be clear from the photo, but when Kim added the white glitter to the died salt-crystals, the glitter changed from white to a blue-green colour, it’s super pretty and I enjoy the smell of vanilla almost as much as I enjoy all the lavender scented-items Kim has made for me.

When I stayed over at Kim’s, one of the many things Kim offered to show me how to make was the Scented Vial Necklaces (there’s a link to the tutorial at the top of the page). When we were Hunting and Gathering for craft supplies, Kim found these super helpful small plastic-containers that come with lids (they kind of look like small containers that restaurants sometimes use for packaging sauce a small amount of salad).

This meant that I could take a couple of scoops of the pre-coloured salt-crystals and add my own essential oils to it without contaminating the whole batch. To be honest, the glass-vials we used are small, so you probably won’t need more than a single tablespoon. I was also a little too enthusiastic with the glitter. In the pictures below, you may be able to see the glitter sticking to the bottom, which means there’s too much, although both Kim and I agree that there’s no such thing as too much glitter.

Image Description: a white hand holding a small plastic container that contains Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died green, coated in white glitter and Dusk's Breathe Easy essential oil has been added to it

This batch of salt-crystals has been scented with Dusk’s Breathe Easy essential oil.

Image Description: a white hand holding a small plastic container that contains Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died blue, coated in white glitter and lavender essential oil has been added to it

This batch of salt-crystals has been scented with lavender essential oil.

Image Description: a white hand holding a small plastic container that contains Saxa rock salt crystals that have been blended together with multiple colours of food dye, however, it's mostly a yellow-orange colour variation, they've been coated in white glitter and lemon essential oil has been added to it

This batch of salt-crystals has been scented with lemon essential oil.

Image Description: a white hand holding a small plastic container that contains Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died dark-pink/red, this batch doesn't have glitter on it and it's not scented

This is a batch Kim made, it doesn’t have any glitter or essential oils added to it, however, I was thinking of obtaining some rose essential oil and maybe a light-bulb shaped glass-vial from Ebay and/or Etsy (links down the bottom), IDK, I’ll see how I go.

The Finished Product:
Image Description: a small glass-vial with a plastic-stopper in the top, it has two-loops of light-blue cord threaded through the small hole at the top of the stopper. The contents of the small glass-vial are Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died light-blue, coated in white glitter and lavender essential oil has been added to it.
This is the lavender one, unfortunately I gave the other two to my mother and sister but forgot to take a photo of them. Kim informed me that they obtained the cord from Daiso, so I’ll have to do some investigating there. Although you could use any cord you have access to, I like this particular type of cord, it’s thin so you’ll need to double-up with it, but I like the feel of it and the range of colours available.

This is a picture of the vanilla vial necklace Kim made me and the lavender vial necklace I made myself.
Image Description: the picture contains two glass-vials with cord attached to them. From left to right, a small glass-vial with a plastic-stopper in the top, it has two-loops of dark-blue cord threaded through the small hole at the top of the stopper. The contents of the small glass-vial are Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died dark-blue, coated in white glitter and vanilla essential oil has been added to it. Next to that one is another small glass-vial with a plastic-stopper in the top, it has two-loops of light-blue cord threaded through the small hole at the top of the stopper. The contents of the small glass-vial are Saxa rock salt crystals that have been died light-blue, coated in white glitter and lavender essential oil has been added to it.

So, have any readers attempted to make a scented vial necklace before? How did it go? What materials did you use? Let me know what you think about these in the comment section down below.

Links:
~Stim Toy Box: Scented Vial Necklace
~Piping Rock: Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils
~Ebay: 10Pcs-Mini-Empty-Glass-Bulb-Vials-Charms-Wish-Bottles-Pendant
~Etsy: 8MM Mini Glass Vials With Silver Metal Caps,glass bottles, DIY Bottles,Wishing Bottle/(mini/ vial/ pendants/ glass/ charms/ bottles)

Stim Toy Review: Antsy Lab’s Fidget Cube

That’s right, my Fidget Cube has finally arrived! Mwuahahaha!


Image Description: a picture of a small brown cardboard-box sitting on my navy-blue and gold fleur-de-lis print couch.

Image Description: a picture of a small brown cardboard-box sitting on my navy-blue and gold fleur-de-lis print couch, however, in this picture the cardboard-box is open and you can see inside is two square objects covered in bubble-wrap, sitting on top of a packaging bag of air and a white piece of paper.

Image Description: two square objects covered in bubble-wrap sitting on my navy-blue and gold fleur-de-lis print couch, you can see inside the bubble-wrap a little to see a white and black fidget-cube inside each box.

Image Description: a plastic-casing with clear lid on top of a grey-coloured base. There's the black and white Fidget Cube sitting on a black piece of paper, the black piece of paper has white text printed on it with white arrows pointing to the different functions the Fidget Cube offers.

Image Description: a pale-white hand clenched around the black and white Fidget Cube with my navy-blue and gold fleur-de-lis print couch in the background.

Item: Fidget Cube (black and white design)

Category: Review/Feedback

Cost: Item = US $22.00 + Shipping and Handling = US $19.00 = Total US $41.00 or AU $57.07 (at the time of conversion)

Date of Purchase: 17/11/2016

Date of Delivery: 16/05/2017

Store: Antsy Labs (USA)

My Location: Australia

Review:

My Problems with the Fidget Cube:
~Shipping: I bought this halfway through November last year and it arrived on Tuesday, it’s almost exactly six months, and the frustrating thing about this was that the lengthy shipping period wasn’t mentioned until after I had already bought it. It’s especially frustrating as they sent me an email saying that my Fidget Cube would be delivered by April 1st at the latest. I suspect the lengthy wait-time is the reason why I’ve been sent two when I only ordered one.

~Contact: Communication with Antsy Lab was vague and mostly one-sided, it was clear that company had no planned or prepared for their received level of success, which is good for them (I am honestly glad their business is a success) but it’s not so great for anyone outside of the USA. It wasn’t until the April 18th that I received a fixed form of action, they had finally processed my order and had sent my package to me, but there wasn’t much I could do but wait for them to contact me as there wasn’t an active blog one could check for information or updates.

On the website, under their “Contact” page, they have three FAQ and answers, the Question “Where’s My Order?” is answered thus:
“Due to the incredible demand, Fidget Cube is currently backordered. We’re shipping thousands of orders daily and orders placed now will ship in approximately 1-2 weeks. Rest assured, orders will be shipped out in the order they were placed, so the fastest possible way to get Fidget Cube (and the only way to get Fidget Cube at this time) is through our site.”

I’m going to be cynical and assume those shipping approximates are for USA orders only. From my point of view, if this is such a problem, then the company needs to make their international shipping process more transparent, so that international customers can make more informed choices.

~Price: Putting aside the shipping fees and delivery problems, I’m still paying US $22 for a Stim Toy, the Fidget Cube is good but not US $22 level good and I feel for that price, the prism key-ring attachment should be a free accessory, not an optional extra. The Fidget Cube is tiny and expensive to replace and I am seriously scared of losing the most expensive Stim Toy I have ever purchased. To put things in perspective, I can order a Fidget Cube from Sensory Oasis for Kids for AU $12.95 (if I pick it up from the store). Am I encouraging people to purchase imitation Fidget Cubes? Absolutely not. I encourage, if possible, people to support a company that is making fidgets and stim toys designed to help Neurodivergent people, however, I am acknowledging the economic-reality that not everyone can afford to purchase items directly from Antsy Labs.

Fortunately, Stim Toy Box has created a post which lists Australian Retailers (in-store and online) where Australians can purchase a variety of Stim Toys:
~Stim Toy Box: Australian Stores that sell Stim Toys

I know my review sounds mostly negative, and I’m sorry if it comes across that way, because I do fact enjoy using the Fidget Cube. I enjoy the weight of it in my palm and while I like all the features, I enjoy the Roll (the small black ball near the black gears) and the Breathe (the worry-stone) features the most. It’s a good product, I just can’t recommend it to people living in Australia (or anywhere outside of the USA), especially when there are cheaper Stim Toy alternatives available.

Things Kim Has Made: Weighted Plushies and Bean-Bags


Image Description: a title-picture with four black sewing-buttons in each corner, in the centre of the picture is the text “Things Kim Has Made” in rainbow word-art text.

I’m finding that the My Treasure Chest series of blog-posts aren’t working for me, mostly because they end up being super long posts due to all the photos, which results in a huge list of photo items I have to describe. So, I figured if I break the Stim Toys down into smaller categories, that might make it more manageable. I have so many Stim Toys I want to talk about, but one of my favourite types are weighted items, like weighted soft toys or weighted bean-bags.

Image Description: a small bean bag made from grey, white and black tiger-print fur on one side and white-stars-on-purple flannelette on the other. It sits on top of light-grey and dark-grey striped blanket.

This is one is rectangle-shaped and it’s lavender-scented, I love the dual-fabric of this bean-bag, the white and black tiger-print fur is soft and fuzzy to touch, but I also like the feel of the white-stars-on-purple flannelette as well.

Image Description: a triangle-shaped bean-bag with a yellow tag at the end. The fabric is an olive green colour with brown monkeys printed on them.
Image Description: a triangle-shaped bean-bag with a green tag at the end. The fabric is orange with prints of Halloween creatures in numbered race cars. Think along the lines of Hanna Barbera Wacky Races meets The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Both these bean-bags are triangle-shaped and unscented, which is something I was super happy about. While I do enjoy and appreciate how Kim scents most of my items with lavender, the problem is that because those bean-bags are scented, I can’t take them outside the house, this is due to the fact that it could cause problems with people who have chemical sensitivities. While I like both of them, I’ve decided to put the second one in my on-the-go stim-toy-bag, the Halloween-style print is adorable and matches my Nightmare Before Christmas messenger-bag.

Image Description: a picture of Flossy (short for Fairy-Floss). Flossy is a light-pink chenille-duster that has had two black buttons and a red tongue attached, Flossy sits on top of light-grey and dark-grey striped blanket

This is Flossy (short for Fairy-Floss). Flossy is super soft to touch and if it weren’t for the fact I’m afraid of getting cat fur all over both of them, I’d probably carry Flossy and Contessa with me around the house (despite my best efforts, I still need to apply the lint-roller to Contessa on a regular basis). There’s just something incredibly soothing about patting Flossy, the lavender scent combining with the softness to make the process very stimmy and enjoyable.

If you’re looking into weighted plushies, I’d recommend a DIY attempt with a chenille duster or chenille mop-head. You can buy them online from K-Mart for AU $3 and as they’re cheap and easy to find, it doesn’t matter if you mess it up, you can always try again.

Image Description: a picture of Carrie. Carrie is a polar-bear weighted-plushie with a light-blue and pink party hat, pink blush-circles on both cheeks, wearing a stripped pink and green scarf with mulit-coloured triangles on her stomach. Carrie sits on top of a lime-green blanket.

This is Carrie, named in honour of Carrie Fisher. Kim informed me that they found Carrie in the Christmas themed section in K-Mart. I find this marketing campaign rather questionable, I mean, New Years Eve themed I could possibly understand, but Christmas themed? How the fuck is pink and green Christmas-themed? Regardless, this doesn’t make Carrie any less adorable, in fact it’s probably a good thing as I’m not a big fan of Christmas-themed things.

Image Description: a collection of weighted plushies sitting in an upright position on my navy-blue and golden fleur-de-lis patterned couch. From left to right, Daisy (yellow hedgehog sponge from Daiso), Carrie (a questionable Christmas-themed polar-bear), Contessa (pink-cat plushie with a yellow crown), Poppy (pink hedgehog sponge From Daiso) and in the center is Flossy (a light-pink chenille-duster with two black buttons and a red tongue attached)

Links:
~Eldritch Esoterica: Creatures From The Gutter
~Eldritch Esoterica: A pale-pink Creature From The Gutter emerges
~Eldritch Esoterica: DIY Stim Toy Collection
~Stim Toy Box: DIY Stim Toys Master Post One
~Stim Toy Box: DIY Stim Toys Master Post Two
~Stim Toy Box: Three Fat Quarters of Fabric from Lincraft
~The Spruce: How to Make a Bean Bag by Sherri Osborn
~Mama OT: DIY No-sew Bean-Bags

Stim Toy Quest: Sensory Oasis for Kids


Image Description: a picture of a grey sword, the hilt of the sword is in the bottom left corner so that the blade of the sword is pointed towards the upper right corner. There is rain bow text in the white space of the image, “Stim Toy” in the upper left corner and “Quest” in the bottom right corner.

Kim has also written a Tumblr post about our quest, here’s the link for it:
~Stim Toy Box: Stim Toy Haul from Sensory Oasis for Kids

On last Wednesday, Kim and I partook in a Stim Toy Quest, we travelled to Footscray and caught the 411 Bus (according to PTV you can also catch the 412 Bus as well) to Altona. We asked the bus driver for directions and clarifications, which naturally resulted in us getting off at the wrong stop, wandering around the Altona Refinery, than wandering around in a large car-park before we found the right place. But we got there in the end and, despite the trouble it took to get there, I would definitely consider it worthy of the effort.

One of the awesome things about the store is there is so much to touch and look at. While Kim talked to Jody about the store and the difficulties of obtaining Stim Toys in Australia, I pretty much lurked in the background, touching all the things. With the exception of the Chewigem chewable jewellery display, there’s a touchable version of everything, which is great.

Although I’m pretty impulsive when it comes to picking up items and touching them, it was a relief to know it was okay, even expected, for me to do so. I’ve been into a few Toyworld stores and I’ve had the customer service people give me weird looks when I investigate stuff and blank stares when I’ve made inquiries about items such as Tangles, so it was great to be around people who were not only enthusiastic about Stim Toys, but knowledgeable about them as well.

These are the items I bought:
Image Description: a silver Twiddle puzzle inside a transparently clear box.
Price: AU $12.95

Image Description: a Rainbow Glitter Baton. A long plastic tube with rainbow coloured segments along it with silver glitter inside it.
Price: AU $3.95


Image Description: Dancing Rainbow Ribbons. It's the back of the packet, which displays a wooden circle, which has a rainbow collection of ribbons and a silver belles attached to the wooden ring.
Price: AU $12.95

Image Description: smiley face stress-ball. A stress-ball that resembles a yellow smiley face.
Price: AU $1.95

Image Description: wooden puzzle stick. It's a puzzle currently in the shape of vertical line, with seperately coloured components are are all connected, the components are coloured individually as yellow-orange-teal green-navy blue-white-red-yellow-orange-teal green-navy blue-white-red.
Price: AU $2.95

Sensory Oasis for Kids
Social Media:
~Website
~Facebook Page

Address:
36 Lobelia Drive, Altona North, VIC 3025

Opening Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 9.00 am til 5.00 pm
Friday: 9.00 am til 4.00 pm
Saturday: 10.00 am til 2.00 pm

Email:
jody@sensoryoasisforkids.com.au

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