Monday, February 22, 2010

Changes Are Coming!

"If I Could Wave A Magic Wand and Change Something About My Small Business, It Would Be....."

If I could change something about my business, it would be to be able to be more confident in myself and what I have to offer others.  I love what I do, but I have such a hard time reaching out to those around me and sharing with them all that I have to offer.  Discovery Toys is a great company with great products and a great business opportinity.  I think if I were able to share that well with others, then my business would really grow by leaps and bounds.  But, I don't have that confidence in myself that says, "Yeah!  You can do it!  This is awesome!  Those phone calls are so easy!" etc.  I find myself insead saying, "Well, they are porbably too busy to want to do this." or "I don't want to pressure them into doing this."  So, I just don't say anything to anyone.  That is what I would change if I had a Magic Wand.

Cara : )

Are You Ready to Get Confident and Certain About Your Business Success?

"I'm the person that small biz owners call
when they're ready for hands-on help
creating a meaningful business
that creates more freedom and flexibility in their lives.”
I’m Susan Baroncini-Moe and I’m about to reveal how you can grow your small business into real prosperity—in your blue jeans!

If you would like to learn more about Susan Baroncini-Moe go to:
or to find out more about this contest go to:

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Grandparents of Children with Autism

I just found this article about research being done of grandparents of children with autism.  I found it very interesting and wanted to share it with you.  I'd love to hear your feedback and if you are a grandparent of a child with autism, what are your challenges and rewards.  How has it effected you?  Here is the link to the article:

If you are a grandparent of a child with autism, you too can participate in the survey.  Here is the link for you to do that:

Looking forward to hearing your feedback!

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Spring Preview

So excited for the new Spring catalogs to arrive. We have great new products starting in March. Who wouldn't want to host a party and earn some of these new toys for free?! Let me know where to send your catalog. And let's get your party date on my calendar today! I can do catalog parties for those who live too far away for me to drive.  You get the same great benefits as a home party hostess.  Call me or email me today!

Some of our new items:

Chiming Charlie
plush octopus that provides great sensory stimulation for baby

Baby Moves
a 3 pack of board books for interacting with baby

Measure Up! Balance
a great science toy for preschoolers learning weights and measures

Garden Works
Wonderful sturdy set of gardening tools

A Seed Grows
Lift the flap book
great companion to Garden Works

Big Hungry Bear Collection
set of story book and plush companions

Gustav Mole Collection
great story book, game and plush companions for music loving children

Wipe Clean Shapes & Colors
super addition to our wipe clean set

Wipe Clean First Words Spanish
another great addition to the wipe clean set

And who says we don't have toys for their school age children?? Here are a few great ones for those age 8 and up!

How to build your own Country
book set that involves kids in social studies skills

Pick It Math Puzzle
great problem solving fun game, can be played head to head

One Odd Old Owl
(prequel to Puzzle Island)
brain-teasing book

Once the new items are available, I will post more pictures and more in-depth information. I cannot wait for our new toys to come!

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Play is the Business of Kids - Pt. 4

6 to 9 year olds

Social: board games, tabletop sport games, organized sports, hobby kits, kites, balls, skates, bikes
   DT Toy Suggestions: Friendship Island, A to Z Jr., Play to Be Safe, Marbleworks collection
Intellectual: dolls, toy typewriter, printing set, racing car, construction sets, science and craft kits, handicrafts, sports and hobbies, books, tapes, puzzles
    DT Toy Suggestions: Marbleworks collection, Think-It-Through Set, The Living World, Jawbones, Tricky Fingers
Spatial Relationships (moving confidently through space): large bicycles, ice and roller skates, pogo stick, scooter
   DT Toy Suggestions: Think-It-Through collection, Mosaic Mysteries
Creative Problem Solving: costumes, doll houses, play villages, miniature people and vehicles, magic sets, art materials
   DT Toy Suggestions: Fashion Friends, Discovery Fun Playhouse, Labyrinth, Tricky Fingers, Puzzle Island

What Caregivers Can Do
Be observant of children's play.
Ask "What did it look like?" and "What did it feel like?"
Play make-believe games.
Build things.
Play competitively at games and play situations.
Improvise imaginary characters and play situations.
Play theater and puppet dramas.
Encourage creative writing and poetry.
Play work games.
Attach names to objects.
Play sandlot sports.
Tell jokes and riddles.
Read to the children.
Let the children read to you.
Help children to organize and clarify things.
Take children to the library.

To order the DT Toys listed above and so much more, visit and click on Shop Products.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Play is the Business of Kids - Pt. 3

3 - 6 years age range

Social and Intellectual: additional dress-up outfits, bathing and feeding doll, puppets and theaters, store-keeping toys, toy phone and toy clock, playhouses, housekeeping toys, toy soldiers, dolls for dressing and undressing, large puzzles, outdoor play equipment, board games
   DT Toy Suggestions: Play to be Safe, Friendship Island, Discovery Fun Playhouse, Fashion Friends

Problem Solving: farm, village, and other play sets, small trucks, cars, planes, and boats; beads, blocks, buttons, peg board, simple construction sets, housekeeping toys, trains, race car sets, balls
   DT Toy Suggestions: Zoo-mobiles, Giant Pegboard, Motor Works, Fashion Friends

Form and Spacial Relationships: simple puzzles, set of plastic measuring cups, large tricycles, sleds, cookie cutters, wagons, scooters, swings, backyard gym sets and jungle gyms, empty cardboard boxes, seesaws, monkey bars, rope swings
   DT Toy Suggestions: Progressive Puzzles, Measure Up! Cups, Playful Patterns

Creativity: crayons, children's safety scissors, finger paints, clay, sketch pads, paste, rhythm instruments
   DT Toy Suggestions: Jam Sessions, Make It Fun Craft Kits, Ahoy! Pirate Pete, Once Upon A Time

Language: story books, books on cassette tapes, radio
   DT Toy Suggestions: Bilingual Songs CD, Wipe Clean Learning to Read & Write, ABC & 123 Wipe Clean Workbooks, Playfull Letters, What Am I? collection

What Caregivers Can Do
Reverse roles.
Make-believe telephone conversations.
Play hide-and-seek.
Improvise characters doing routine things.
Practice motor skills with card and board games.
Play games of courage.
Play "counting" and "number" games.
Provide children with the materials and environment needed for good, healthy play.
Do gymnastics.
Mimic animals and people.
Use hand puppets with different voices.
Listen to and talk about dreams.
Tell "what-if' stories.
Act out fairy tales.
Read to the children.
Teach children to identify different sizes and shapes with cookie cutters and baking pans.
Play "matching" games.
Describe activities that are taking place while you are doing household chores.
Encourage children to create stories while looking through books and magazines.

To order the DT Toys listed above and so much more, visit and click on Shop Products.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Monday, February 15, 2010

Play is the Business of Kids - Pt. 2

18 month to 3 years age range

Gross Motor: first tricycle, wagon to get into, rocking horse, large balls, outdoor play equipment, push-pull toys
    DT Toy Suggestions: Tangiball, Working Trio, Hammer Away, Roll & Play

Fine Motor: weaving sets, art materials, peg boards, clothes pins for tossing into an open pan, large balls, wheel barrows, sandbox toys, blocks of different shapes and sizes
    DT Toy Suggestions: Giant Pegboard, Bathtime Bugs,

Exploration: sandbox, child-size play furniture, play appliances and utensils, handmade materials, doll furniture, large packing boxes for climbing in and out
    DT Toy Suggestions: Bathtime Bugs, Measure Up! Pots & Spoons, Measure Up! Cups, The Potty Train, Match Up Ride & Go, Match Up Hide & Seek

Symbolic Representation: simple dress-up clothes, stuffed animals dolls, tea sets
    DT Toy Suggestions: Measure Up! Pots & Spoons

Problem Solving: various size boxes, simple puzzles, games, stringing large beads, take-apart toys with parts that snap together, construction toys that snap together
    DT Toy Suggestions: Caterpillar Shape Sorter, Castle Marbleworks, Place & Trace, Sunshine Market

Creativity: clay and modeling dough, blocks, large crayons, non-electric trains, blackboard and chalk, simple musical instruments, finger paints, safety scissors, paper and pencils
    DT Toy Suggestions: Baby Grooves

Language: picture books, children's magazines, tapes of stories
    DT Toy Suggestions: Sounds Like Fun, The Potty Train, Match Up Hide & Seek, Match Up Ride & Go, Roll & Play

What Caregivers Can Do
Pretend-play (create a traffic jam with a toy car).
Play tag, bounce, catch, and empty-fill games.
Hide things; "lose" things, and let children hide things from you.
Build something with blocks.
Play "guess what it is."
Tell stories and let children supply missing words.
Reverse roles (you be the child; child be the caregiver).
Play follow-the-leader.
Play guessing games.
Act out stories.
Let children imitate your activities (such as washing dishes and cleaning house).
Notice the child's play and praise efforts.
Help children to classify objects.
Sing to children.
Go on field trips in the backyard.
Take children to library.

To order the DT Toys listed above and so much more, visit and click on Shop Products.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Play is the Business of Kids - Pt. 1

0 - 18 month age range

Perception: mobiles - hung over the crib about a foot from the baby's eye level, small fish tank placed near the crib, posters - pasted on the ceiling or walls, music boxes, wind chimes, toy mirrors
    DT Toy Suggestions: Lullabies Around The World CD, Sunny Sounds, Try-Angle

Manipulation of Objects (mouth and hand play): rattles, pounding and stacking toys, squeeze toys, teething toys, spoon in cup, floating tub toys, picture blocks, string of BIG beads, stuffed animals, balls
    DT Toy Suggestions: Rainfall Rattle, Super Yummy, Tangiball, Hammer Away, Giant Pegboard Activity Pack, My Busy Day, Bathtime Bugs,

Exploration (pushing buttons and pulling levers): crib-gym exercises, push-pull toys, small take-apart toys, pots and pans
    DT Toy Suggestions: Go-Go Caterpillar, Measure Up! Pots & Spoons, Play & Learn Snail, Working Trio, Roll & Play

Spacial Relationships, Shapes & Sizes: nested boxes or cups, blocks, large puzzles, plastic containers of different sizes
    DT Toy Suggestions: Measure Up! Cups, Giant Pegboard, Caterpillar Shape Sorter, Sunshine Market,

Cognition: books with rhymes, pictures, jingles, records, musical and chime toys
    DT Toy Suggestions: Match Up Hide & Seek, Match Up Ride & Go, Sounds Like Fun, Baby Grooves,

Locomotion: set of building blocks, large dolls, toys to crawl after, pounding toys
    DT Toy Suggestions: Hammer Away, My Busy Day, Tangiball

What Caregivers Can Do
Be available to play.
Respond to baby's sounds.
Smile at the baby. Let baby play with your fingers.
Talk with baby.
Play "pat-a-cake" and catch games.
Play "peek-a-boo," "bye-bye," and hiding games.
Make faces in a mirror.
Sing to baby.
Play at "losing" and finding things.
Name objects as you give them to the baby.

To order the DT Toys listed above and so much more, visit and click on Shop Products.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Friday, February 12, 2010

Making Work at Home Work - February 2010

As you may remember, I recently partnered up with Making Work at Home Work as a blogger.

Working with a Coach

By Mary M. Byers

I took the plunge and hired a coach late last year. She’s been a fabulous addition to my team and is worth every penny. Here’s how I’m benefiting:

Accountability: At the end of each session, we identify 3-5 activities for me to complete by our next session. I don’t want to disappointment my coach or embarrass myself so I find I’m highly motivated to get my “homework” done each month.

Advice: I’m able to outline my thoughts and then ask for her advice. Though she doesn’t always say, “This is what I think you should do...” she is always able to ask pertinent questions to help me come to a decision I’m comfortable with.

Expertise: My coach has small business acumen and more importantly to me, is an expert in online marketing, something that intimidates me. I have a lot of questions about how to implement my online marketing ideas and she’s a great resource for getting the answers I need. When I’m stuck, she reminds me that I don’t have to know how to do everything and that between us, we can find the resources to implement even the craziest ideas.

Companionship: Let’s face it, being a solo-preneur can be a lonely endeavor. My coach gives me someone to bounce ideas off of as well as the comfort of having someone along on the journey with me. Knowing someone else is rooting for me encourages me to continue to strive for excellence.

If you’re looking to help your business reach new heights in 2010, consider hiring a coach. Doing so is a great way to stretch yourself and grow your business.

Mary Byers is the author of Making Work at Home Work: Successfully Growing a Business and a Family Under One Roof. You can learn more about making work at home work by subscribing to Mary’s free blog at Interested in more articles like this? Join the blog ring here.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader

Thursday, February 11, 2010

My Kids Have Too Many Toys!!

It is all too common to hear from parents that their kids have too many toys and often don't play with any of them! The DT Toy Sort is a personal service we offer with a comprehensive, yet clear process to review the toys in use, edit and organize your toy assortment, and recommend possible teach/play toy solutions that can benefit and enhance your child's developmental skills.

Introducing: dt Toy Sort

The first thing an Educational Consultant will do is help you to determine how to find the "toy keepers" and the "toys you can do without" piles. This reveals a lot about how your child plays. More often than not, the toys in the "must keep" pile are open-ended and the "forgotten" pile are toys that don't do very much at all. This is a key point moving forward in the Toy Sort. This step sounds simple enough, however, many times the reason there are "so many toys" is that nothing has ever been put away after a child outgrows it. Consider how old rattles get tossed in with building blocks.

All toys are sorted, including the removal of any broken toys. Toys are packed away that are not age-appropriate - this includes toys that might be too old for the child as well. Toys that are too old can frustrate young children. Toys that are outgrown can be stored or passed along.

Toy storage is an important component to the Toy Sort. Having things categorized and having a place for each toy, is highly beneficial for the child. Not only does it make it easier for children to clean up when they are done; it also teaches them categorization skills. Clear labeled bins are a great choice (a photo works for pre-reading children) or open bins that children can see into and access easily. (Toy boxes are often seen as very sentimental but become bottomless pits. Use it as a costume box instead.)

Educational Consultants are a valuable resource in teaching parents about the developmental needs of children at every stage in their early growth. Many parents claim they have too many toys, but when the Toy Sort is complete, they have a much better picture of what they have and what is needed for their child's developmental stages. For example, a child may be missing puzzles or patterning toys that are important for a particular growth stage.

The goal of the Toy Sort Service is for parents and children to feel good about their playtime together. When a child can easily find his/her favorite toys and games, we as parents can focus on helping our children to learn through play. Children are also more likely to play on their own, an important skill to develop. You will be glad you took the time to tackle the task with your DT consultant as your partner. Ask us to do a Toy Sort with you soon.

If you are interested in having me help you with a Toy Sort, please contact me today to set up a time. I'd love to help you tame the toy monster in your home. Please let me know if you have any questions. I'm here to help!

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Monday, February 8, 2010

Can't change the direction of the wind so let's Change the direction of your sails!

LOVE what I do! Many of you know that I am a stay home mom of 2 boys 8 & 4. SO I don't always have a regular schedule!

I love what I do so much that I want to share it with everyone!!!

I work only when I want! I work only as much as I want!

I am an Educational Leader with Discovery Toys. If you are are unfamiliar with DT we are an award winning educational toy company. We offer a lifetime guarantee on all our toys! That's right they break it we replace it for free! Just don't tell me if you ran over it with the car, that may not be covered ;) In the 30+ years we have been around we have never had a safety recall!

Discovery Toys is heart-based and family is always first!

SO, it's great toys, with a fantastic lifetime guarantee but that's not the best part, I am helping make a difference in a child's life thru play! The power of play is huge in a child's life. Work is their play and play is their work. So many parents, teachers, therapists are all using our toys. We have Autism support symbols, learning styles and learning pathways next to all our toys in the catalog and on the website.


My job is so rewarding not just with $. I had the priviledge last year to get toys for 163 children that a local organization called Healthy Families of Howard County.  These children mostly come from low income families and otherwise wouldn't have had much to open at Christmas. That's pretty cool;)

You can do in home parties, catalog parties or just Internet orders or all of them (that's what I do) I also do fundraisers and events.

If you are interested in helping families in your community by becoming an Educational Consultant, there is a start up fee. It can be separated into 3 monthly payments if you like.

Here's what you get: 18 of our most popular toys worth over $390, your own personal website free for 3 months, enough business supplies and tools to get you on your way to earning $, free training, fantastic support, great rewards program in your first 3 months worth over $1400 including earning your kit back for free! All for just $125

Be in business for yourself but not by yourself.

Here is my website go and look at the toys. If you click contact me I am the only one your email goes to! Or contact me at

Ask me anything, I will be completely honest with you. I don't want you to join me so I make money off you. I want you to join because this is right for you!

Here is the basics: You make 20% commission on your sale, when your sales in 1 month reach $250 you make an additional 5% on all your sales and are considered eligible to receive more bonuses. Sell $1500 in one month and get an additional 2% bonus on all your sales. There is more, but we can get into that when you contact me.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Product Spotlight - Measure Up! Pots & Spoons

Measure Up! Pots & Spoons
#1674 $25.00
(Buy Measure Up! Cups & Pots & Spoons
together for $35.00 a savings of $2.50)

Little ones stir, pour, measure, and pretend play their way to important early math and science concepts. These marvelous manipulitives are volumetrically correct and sized to interact with our Measure Up! Cups. From number associations, to stacking and sortinng, to molding and stamping, this discovery cooking set builds a host of important preschool concepts. Includes 5 Pots, 5 Spoons and Activity Guide. Pots sized from 3 9/16" x 1 13/16" to 5 3/16" x 3 3/4".

(K, V)  d  f
Learning Pathways: from 2 y - primary school
Math - Reasoning Skills & Imaginary Play

Key Benefits:
-Identify colors, shapes, numbers, and textures
-Develop early skills related to counting, sorting, sequencing, nesting, stacking and measurement
-Pair with Measure Up!® Cups to enhance proportional measurement discoveries, e.g.: (Vol. #10 Cup = Vol. #1 Pot) (Vol. #10 Spoon = Vol. #1 Cup)
-Use spoons to explore balance and center of gravity
-Learn about food groups from the designs on the bottom of the pots
-Play with clay: pots can stamp on clay; clay can mold inside spoons
-Focus on different number associations: numbers stamped inside pots; number of dots inside pots; number of different shapes on handles, plus much more!

To learn more or order this and other games, click here and then click "Shop Online".

My 4 year old loves to play with these Pots & Spoons.  He likes to "cook" with the Busy Bugs and make "Bug Nugget Soup".  He also enjoys sorting the different colored bugs & animals into the pots.  He has a lot of fun playing with the Measure Up! Pots & Spoons.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Friday, February 5, 2010

FAB February Promotions

Want a "FAB February"?  Then check out these promotions just for you, just for February!

“Fab February New EC Bonus Promotion” (Feb 1 – 28): FREE DT Rolling Case! New ECs who join February 1 – 28 and place a $250 or more order no later than March 31 will receive a FREE DT Rolling Tote! That’s a $75 VALUE!

“Fab February Hostess Bonus Promotion” (Feb 1 - 28): A Hostess with a $250 or more party will qualify for a $25 coupon for FREE Products of her choice from our new Spring Catalog in March! That’s in addition to the Hostess Rewards Program of $40 Free Products, totaling $65 Free Products!

“Fab February Customer Promotion” (Feb 7 - 28): Customers purchasing just $40 or more through a party can qualify to receive their choice of two fabulous products at half off!  You can choose from My Baby's World, Sounds Like Fun, Busy Pets, Mosaic Mysteries.

If you would like to take advantage of any of these promotions and have a FAB February, please contact me today!

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Top 10 Products - December

Top 10 in Retail Dollars
2288 Motor Works
1756 Castle Marbleworks®
3875 Marbleworks® Starter Set
1111 Caterpillar Shape Sorter
1341 Go Go Caterpillar
2873 Fashion Friends
1152 Rainfall Rattle
1971 Measure Up!® Cups
2240 Flip Fliop Faces
2193 Progressive Puzzles

Top 10 in Quantity
1152 Rainfall Rattle
1111 Caterpillar Shapr Sorter
1341 Go Go Caterpillar
1971 Measure Up!® Cups
2288 Motor Works
2193 Progressive Puzzles
1759 Place and Trace® Puzzles
1020 Super Yummy Teether
4246 Wiz Kidz
3875 Marbleworks® Starter Set

If you would like more information about any of these items or any items we sell or would like to place an order, please go to my website ( and click on Shop Products.

posted by:
Cara Retz
Educational Leader, Discovery Toys