When my son, Zack (now 8 years old), was in preschool, he hated to draw, color and paint. I tried different methods to get him to embrace his artistic side – Finger paints! Glitter! A box of 120 Crayola crayons! – but nothing mattered. He’d draw/color/paint for all of 2 minutes, and then go right back to crashing his Hot Wheels through Lego towers. As a person who thrives in anything creative, I felt like a failure as a mother. I may or may not have cried about it in front of his teacher and pediatrician.
Moms, you know how it goes. It doesn’t take much for us to feel like we are failures, does it?
But as it turns out, I shouldn’t have been worried. About a year ago, Zack developed a concept that he calls a Zack Bot. It’s a little flying robot with long arms and a big Z on his body. He’s drawn Zack Bot books, puts Zack Bots on every scrap of paper that he can find, and creates “special edition” bots for his friends – there’s a Josh Bot and a Kat Bot, which each have different super powers.
So when I heard that there was a company – Budsies – that turned children’s artwork into plush, stuffed animals, I knew that I had to get one made for Zack. After looking at their website, I was really impressed with the way they had turned other kids’ drawings into stuffed animals, down to the last polka dot and crazy detail. Kids have some super imaginative visions, and all of the animals were really well executed.
Of course, I couldn’t order a Budsie for Zack and leave out Emma. She drew her ideal stuffed animal, which was kind of crazy. I was worried that it would be too much (or too abstract) for Budsies to replicate, but they assured me that it was just fine.
The process is that you order your Budsies through their website and then send in the artwork. If your child needs help coming up with an idea, Budsies offers templates that they can use as a jumping off point. To submit the artwork, you can take a picture of it and email or text it to the company or just upload it through their website. They let me know that they had received the artwork and that it looked great. In about a month, I got a shipping notification that our Budsies were on their way to us via USPS Priority Mail.
I didn’t tell the kids that their Budsies were on their way, since I know opening that box would be an amazing surprise for them. And it was!
Here’s Zack and his Zack Bot:
And Emma and her Bussy:
Aren’t they adorable? And the Budsies, too! 🙂
Now that I have these stuffed animals in my hands, I am even more impressed. They are perfectly constructed and appliquéd. And the fact that the designer was able to interpret Emma’s 3 year-old scribble into such a perfect representation just blows my mind.
I know it’s just July, but I really do think that this should be something to consider as a Christmas (or birthday) gift for a child in your life. They are normally $99 a piece, but I see that they are running a $69 summer sale on their website right now. I know that it seems a lot for a stuffed animal, but this one-of-a-kind product is obviously not something that you’d find at Toys ‘R Us or Target. I think Budsies sends out announcements to their mailing list, so you might want to subscribe to that to see if there are further sales coming up before the holidays. They also offer gift certificates in any amount you want to choose.
I really didn’t expect it, but my kids’ Budsies have joined forces with their favorite, cannot-be-replaced stuffed animals. Every night, Zack sleeps with a little green dinosaur (“Toad”) that his grandmother gave him when he was born…but now he’s let Zack Bot join Toad in his slumber. Bussy has joined Emma and her life-long favorite flamingo stuffed animal, too. The Budsies have even gone with us to run errands – and Emma puts Bussy’s headphones on her shoulder and she carries him around like a purse!
If you have any questions about the stuffed animals or my experience with Budsies, please let me know. I have been really impressed with all aspects of the company and highly recommend them.
Find more on Budsies here:
This post has been sponsored by Budsies. I received two Budsies for my kids in exchange for my review. All opinions expressed are my own.