I read an alarming story in The New York Times today. RC2, the maker of Thomas the Tank Engine wooden toys is in the midst of a major crisis because it was discovered that the paint used on the toys was contaminated with lead. 1.5 million toys are being recalled. A story like this finally made a popular newspaper, but it has long been known that mass produced toys have a lot of issues. Whether it is issues over the quality of manufacture, the chemicals used to produce them, the safety of the products, or the conditions of the manufacturing environments in the low cost countries where they are produced, people have known that rules have been broken and children have been put at risk. It is quite unfortunate, but there are alternatives. The whole organic movement that is also driven by sustainable business practices has produced a number of niche companies who are producing and retailing better and more natural toys for kids. It is easy to find these companies and fun to read about them too.

A few examples:

Oompa Toys, Natures Crib, Haba, Papaya Patch

And a cool diaper manufacturer: Swaddlebees

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I never post about food. However, this is the second time this week that I’m posting about food. These #vegan dishes at Empress by @theprivegroup were awesome. #instavegan #singapore Everything worked out fine for @trailrunningmom After a little stress, they had her race packet and bib number at the @metasprintseries venue and she kept it upright on the bike! 🚴🏽 She was very pleased with 2nd place 🏆 in her age group at her first road #Duathlon.🏃🏻There are no mountains ⛰ and there isn’t much singletrack in #singapore but it’s still a great city for endurance sports. It looked like there were more than 1,500 athletes at the 3K/18K/3K race with LOTS of kids too. Great vibe! #triathlonsg #teamhorstsports 🇺🇸 Our kids may recognize this great Shoppes @marinabaysands feature from six years ago. I had forgotten how cool it was. #singapore #marinabaysands First time on a road bike for @trailrunningmom In advance of her first ever road duathlon @metasprintseries I taught her some tips & tricks including the do's/don'ts of shifting strategy, cornering, blocking (not), drafting (not), passing, flying mount/dismount, etc. It was fun! Even though she was on a "rental" too, I couldn't keep up on my "steed." #triathlonsg #singapore #teamhorstsports @thecheryltan #cheryltan #singapore #singapore Name those tunes. 11-year-old Feng E is making a name for himself in Asia and beyond. #guitar #fenge #singapore 🎸 @trailrunningmom led #yoga at #ypoedge #singapore 

@ypoglobal #yogini Tremendous #vegan dinner @metasingapore Without a heads up, Chef Sun and his team whipped up an amazing seven course + three “snacks” meal for @trailrunningmom and me, that was worthy of their @michelinguide star. We sat at the counter and watched every step in the process. Chef said that with advanced notice (of our diet), he “would have done better.” We appreciated his perfectionism, but it was just fine. #metarestaurant #instavegan #michelinguide #singapore

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