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What is the Price of Kinect for Xbox 360?

Kinect for Xbox 360 From AmazonIf you’re looking to find how much is Kinect for the Xbox 360, that depends on if you can find it in the normal places or not. See, if you go look at Best Buy or Sears in your home town, you might not be able to find it. That’s because it’s going to be the biggest selling item this year for Christmas – guaranteed – and they’re already sold out most places. If you do find it at Best Buy or another local outfit, the price of Kinect is $149.99 for the Kinect 360 sensor, including the game Kinect Adventures. However, you probably won’t find it there.

So what are your other options?

What is the price of Kinect if you have to look other places? You can look on Amazon.com. Though they have them for sale directly from Amazon, you’ll probably not find one there, either. But the other thing you’ll find on Amazon is that you can buy through Amazon from other sellers. These guys will have it, but you’re going to pay more. At the time of writing this article, the minimum Kinect Xbox price is $204 from one of these other sellers. Is that worth it? Depends on how bad your kid wants the Kinect for Christmas! For my money, yes it’s worth it.

Another great place to look is on . You can find them there for sure, too, but once again you’re going to pay extra there, too. Same reason as at Amazon – you’re paying a premium because they’ve got something you want. Capitalism at its best – the law of supply and demand.

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Here’s another idea – buy the Kinect 360 bundle. You get the Xbox 360 and the Kinect together in one package. Obviously, if the person you’re buying for doesn’t have the Xbox 360 already, this is a no-brainer. However, if they do, maybe you can keep the Xbox and get your own Kinect after Christmas when you can find it for regular price. The bundled Kinect Xbox Price is $399.99 (or $499.99 at some places) for the 250GB model or $299.99 for the 4GB model. At last check, there were these available at many places, including Amazon and Best Buy.

Best Buy is a great place to get it, because you can order it online and have it either shipped to you, or you can run by the store in your city and pick it up. Plus, if you’ve got any problems you can always take it back to the store for service or return.

Good luck, and happy shopping!

Filed under Family Games, Good Christmas Gifts, Hottest Toys, Kids, Video Games

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Where Can I Find Kinect for Xbox 360?

Kinect for Xbox 360 From AmazonKinect for Xbox 360 takes the Wii motion controlled video gaming idea to a new level – there are no controllers required at all! Kinect uses an array of 4 microphones, a 640x480 pixel resolution VGA Motion Camera,  and a 640x480 pixel resolution depth camera to track the movement of the players at all times. It is fully compatible with all Xbox 360 models released to date, though all the games aren’t compatible.

Not to worry! There are many new games released already, and many more in the wings. It looks to me like this is going to be one of the most important ideas in video gaming since the Wii. Don’t miss out, especially for Christmas!

Which leads to the question “Where can I find Kinect for Xbox 360?” As usual, when one of these new technological devices is released right before Christmas, they’re going to sell out. That’s why you want to shop early, to make sure you get yours before they’re gone.

Kinect For Xbox 360A few good places to look are Amazon.com, Best Buy, and . All of these have their advantages and disadvantages. Amazon sells them directly themselves for the suggested retail price, but sometimes they sell out. They also have other sellers that sell them through Amazon, but quite often you’ll pay a higher price than if you got it directly from Amazon. Still, you can find it and it that’s worth it, even if you do have to pay a little more.

You can buy it directly through Best Buy online, but they might sell out, too. The nice thing about buying it through Best Buy is if you have problems you can return it to your local store. Much easier.

If you can’t find it anywhere else, you’ll want to try . There are many sellers on Ebay, and you can almost always find anything you want. However, once again you might be paying more. Sometimes, though, because of the number of sellers on Ebay, you can get a really good price, especially if you don’t mind the bidding process. Me, I like to use Buy It Now, because I hate waiting and competing with others for the item I want. However, some people love to do this.

What if you can't find the sensor bar by itself? Then buy the whole unit - Xbox 360 plus Kinect Bundle. Find it at Amazon or Best Buy.

So check out these different avenues, and I’m sure your kids (or you) will be unwrapping that Kinect for Xbox 360 this Christmas!

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Filed under Family Games, Gift For Someone Who Has Everything, Good Christmas Gifts, Hard to Shop For, Hottest Toys, Kids, Video Games

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Melissa and Doug Toys

Melissa and Doug Cutting Food Box From AmazonNothing is more aggravating than getting a new toy home and your toddler plays more with the box than the toy. Finding toys that are engaging and educational is a plus and you can find them with Melissa and Doug toys.

A married couple, Melissa and Doug began their business while they were still dating and the company has grown with them. Starting their company twenty years ago in a small garage in Connecticut, Melissa and Doug Toys has grown quickly with great success. This is due in part to their work ethic and because they treat their employees and customers like family.  They attribute their immense success to these principles.

Melissa and Doug Toys first product, a pink fuzzy pig book, encouraged children's reading as well being aware of sensory learning to touch. Their products encourage using the different senses to learn and grow children's educational process. Since the production of their first products they now have a wide variety of books, games and puzzles for every age level. They also have recreational toys in a wide variety of choices. Their in-house design team specializes on giving consumers a classic looking educational toy that lasts a long time.

Melissa and Doug Floor PuzzleMelissa and Doug Toys range from books, to dolls and pretend items such as food and career play. Each item is tested for safety according to American standards. The company also has specialty product lines that are cherished as these grow yearly.

Melissa and Doug Toys are not limited to in home products. Their arts and crafts supplies are great for school classrooms as well. They also carry a large amount of puzzles and interactive three dimensional wooden games to. Cognitive skills are developed in your minds while having a great time. This aids in the increase of problem solving skills for growing children.

One very popular product in the Melissa and Doug toys line features puppets and theaters. These can be used for home or school. The friendly puppets come in all ethnicities and are easy to use. Puppets are a great way for children to express their feelings and attitudes of behavior while creating imaginative stories for creative minds.

You can find Melissa and Doug toys at large online stores such as Amazon. Each customer is treated like family and the favor is returned judging by all the business they get from repeat customers who are very loyal. This made-in-America company is a great example of entrepreneurship and role model for businesses that truly value their customers.

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Wild Planet Hyper Dash – Fun Game For The Whole Family

Wild Planet Hyper Drive From Amazon

In combining both educational and physical activity, the Wild Planet Hyper Dash game is a fun game for the entire family. Children from six to eleven can play the game as well as adults. The game promotes learning, memory, and physical activity that many children are missing on a regular basis.

The hand-held command control is very easy to hold. It has a grip that contains the micro-transmitter and receiver that speaks clearly and audibly. The disks also have transmitters and receivers so that when a disk is retrieved using the controller it can tell if the correct disk has been picked up. The five disks can be placed in areas up to one hundred feet from the controller. They may be hidden throughout a room or yard to make the game more exciting. The disks of the Wild Planet Hyper Dash game are brightly colored and have numbers clearly printed on them. They have transmitters and receivers built into them that link each disk to the controller.

The Wild Planet Hyper Dash game is set up so that it can be played by individuals or groups of up to 8 people. These people can play in pairs or as teams. The controller keeps score and times so that everyone knows where they are at in the game at all times. This is a unique and fun way to increase physical activity in a home and add to a child's educational skill level.  Hyper Dash offers fun for the entire family and a way to increase the activity level of both children and adults.

Playing level one is a wonderful way for a child to learn their colors. The disks are bright green, red, yellow, blue, and orange. The controller calls out the color to be selected and the player must retrieve the correct disk. The colors are called out in random so a player can play at this level again and again while they are learning their colors.

A number identification game is part of the Wild Planet Hyper Dash game level two. The disks have clearly printed numbers from one to five on them. Players must retrieve the right number in the order that the controller instructs. For a young player the numbers are called out randomly so that they learn their numbers in a fun and easy way.

The controller provides multiple commands in the third level of Wild Planet Hyper Dash. Players are asked to retrieve multiple disks based on randomly selected numbers and colors. The command may have the player retrieve the disks in the order commanded or in reverse order. There may be a double reverse command which includes retrieving two disks in reverse order then a triple reverse which will require retrieval of three disks in reverse order.

When a player selects level four of the Wild Planet Hyper Dash game they are asked to solve addition and subtraction problems while running for the disk that contains the correct answer.  This teaches not only math, but sharpens the ability to think on your feet quickly.

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Bakugan Starter Packs – Modern Day Game of Marbles

Bakugan Mania is here and my kids are already buzzing.

Bakugan Starter Park

So what is Bakugan?

Well mix an anime cartoon, action figures and cards, add a games of marbles twist — and that is Bakugan. The animated cartoon series started the first of 2008, however the tiny Bakugan brawlers are already popular in Japan and Canada.

There are 100 Bakugan action figure warriors tucked into plastic balls that pop open when they're rolled onto a magnetic game card, where they gather points. "Boys want to throw things, collect things, trade things, battle  and, of course, win," Matt Wexler, executive producer of the television show and head of global licensing, said in an e-mail.

My kids are telling me that Bakugan Starter Packs are apparently the game all our 4-12 yr old kiddos want. Strategy is key in this game as the players have to place their metal Gate Cards with intent as each card affects the battle differently. Plus it is cool how my kids must learn marble shooting skills to roll their Bakugan into battle.

The good news is the relative inexpensiveness of the game. The sets get you going and then most of the required pieces, such as the action cards, are under $10, and the Bakugan Battle Arena runs about $30. These things and the Bakugan Launcher do not come with the sets. However, you can use the tried and true launcher, your thumb!

Bakugan brawlers are selected at random when shipped. The Bakugan Starter Pack includes: 3 - Bakugan Morphing Marbles 3 - Metal Cards. You can upgrade if you want a fuller set to the Bakugan Battle pack which comes with 6 Bakugan Brawlers and 8 Metal cards. This seems to be a good deal.

I have read in Time Magazine and Newsday that this is one of the hottest must-have Christmas toys. Still, with a hundred different spheres and dozens of different cards up for grabs, as well as some of the items already being tagged as "rare," I think  buying early can save us a nagging holiday headache.

This just in! These items are extremely hard to get! However, you can find them at right now! There are lots of them you just have to bid!

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Where to Find the Nintendo Wii – Best Price

Nintendo Wii Best Price

Once again, the Nintendo Wii Gaming System is going to be one of the top sellers this Christmas season. Shop early if you want to get the best price on Wii this year. The Wii has been out for a couple of years now, and because of the new and innovative games like the brand new Super Mario Brothers they keep coming out with, it remains more popular than ever.

So where can I get the Nintendo Wii best price?

To find the , your best bet is some of the auction sites. You can get the best prices, bid for the price you want to pay, and get fast delivery. There are many places to get “new in box” systems, and also some places where you can get “out of box” systems for much less. Some of these “out of box” Wii systems can save you a bunch of money.

Of course, the main auction site to find the best price on Wii is . Ebay is the place where you can get just about anything – new systems, bundles, stripped down systems, and used Wii consoles. The number of sellers on Ebay is unbelievable, and they you’re most likely to find the on one of the auction sites like Ebay.

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is especially nice if you don’t mind getting a used system. They are very well regulated and controlled, so if you do buy a used one you’ll be sure to know what you’re getting. Plus, sometimes the used systems are just like new, hardly played at all!

You can also go to local retail stores, but you will probably be paying top dollar there. The nice thing about shopping locally is you don’t have to pay for shipping, and you can walk right home with the Wii under your arm. However, these places are not recommended if you’re looking for the best price on Wii.

Another great place to try is Amazon Marketplace. At Amazon, you have the benefit of ease of use, reliable shipping, and ease of return if something is wrong. Once again, at Amazon you have the choice between new and used systems. Plus, you can also buy games there. The selection of merchandise you can get for your Wii is mind-boggling at Amazon.

These are a couple of very good sources for getting your Nintendo Wii and the best price possible. But get shopping – the closer it gets to Christmas, the more you’re going to pay!

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Fun Family Games – Mexican Train Dominoes and others

When I was growing up, one of my most favorite things was family game night. We would all sit down around our kitchen table, fill up our ice cream float cups and play a mean game of Hearts.

Those were good times because of the way it pulled us all back in as a family. My husband also had a similar experiences in his family so we both were in agreement that we wanted to continue this tradition with our family.

As is common with childhood memories, you don't see the problems involved in making such activities happen. We quickly realized that the age difference between our oldest and youngest (7 years) posed a problem in finding a game that both could play and enjoy.

Some Great Answers

You knew I was going to have some answers, right? First off, a game we were introduced to this summer on our family vacation was a fun family game called Mexican Train Dominos. It was fun, several people could play at one time (which is good in a family of 7) and the dominos rules were easy to learn and follow. One note - the rules that came with our game were different than how we learned how to play. Here are our rules.

Along with our Mexican Train Dominoes game, we found Apples to Apples. This game too can be played by all of us at the same time and we liked that it came in a junior version that was still fun for the older kids.

Blokus is a great colored tile game that is easy for everyone to play. The cool thing about this game is that no matter your age it really works to exercise your critical thinking skills. It is fun to watch how smart your kiddos really are!

These are great Christmas gift ideas and birthday present ideas because they are inexpensive and they don't involve technology. Which means more time to talk and laugh together! What good Christmas gifts!

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How To Play Dominos – Mexican Train Domino Rules

We have learned a new game called Mexican Train Dominoes. But we learned it differently than what the rules that came with the game say.

These are the Mexican Train Dominos rules we learned to play that seems to best suit our younger kiddos.

The Mexican Train Dominos start at double 12's. You can also purchase these dominos with actual numbers on them to replace the dots. This might work better if you have a young counter as you will see later on, they will need to be able to count the dots in their remaining tiles. To start - each person takes a set number of tiles (determined by the number of players) and the person who has the highest set of doubles starting with 12 begins. The next round starts with the next lower doubles. The play goes clockwise with each person starting their leg - looks like a spider - with the same number as the double or picking one tile which they can play if it is a playable. From there you play on your leg each turn with a couple of exceptions.

1st - Another playing option is when someone is unable to play on their leg even after they pick, you can play on it. They indicate that it is open for all players by placing one of the little trains that come in the game on their leg. We like to use M&M's because once you can play on your leg again, you can remove the train (or eat the M&M!) and other players cannot play on it.

2nd - If you have a tile that has the same number as the double that was used at the beginning of the game, you can start a Mexican Train. This is a leg started apart from the other legs and any person can play on it. Just one Mexican train per round.

A couple of side notes - playing a doubles tile requires a "proof" meaning you must also play another tile on it in that turn. You don't have to pick if you can't play but the next person to play must either play on the double or pick to try to. No one can resume play until the double has been proven. This requirement can thwart your prelaid plans. And don't get discouraged if you get stuck drawing tiles well into the game to get started. Because you have the potential to play up to 12 rounds (your choice), it seems most people will get the same chance.

To win the round, be the first to play all your tiles. Everyone adds up the total number or dots on their remaining tiles. The total is their score on that round. The winner of the game is the person who has the lowest total after all rounds are completed.

Mexican Train Dominos. Easy dominos rules and a fun family game! Great for family Christmas gifts!

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