Shipping took longer than expected due to the holidays, but, it arrived in time for Christmas. The box was GIGANTIC, so finding a place to store it for a few days was a chore.
On Christmas Eve, we tore into the box to put together the big Santa gift. All the parts are included, and it goes together fairly easily. From having read other reviews, I paid special attention to the areas of trouble: mailbox flag seemed to droop, so, I did the logical thing and gave it a hefty tap with a hammer. It popped into place and functions just as it's supposed to. We skipped the screwing on of the red roof tiles. I'm no glutton for punishment, and I couldn't understand how this step would affect function. All in all, set-up was easier than I expected and really took less than 1 hour after all the tools are collected and at hand.
Christmas morning came early when the babe began puking in the middle of the night. Between wretches he played exclusively with the stove unit, stirring his pots and throwing in the felt food Santa brought from IKEA. He really seemed to love it!
Within the first 24 hours we noticed that the plastic bubbles that stick out of the shutters to hold them in place in the body of the toy were malformed, causing the shutters to nearly fall off. This wouldn't matter so much, but, these are the shutters that have the whiteboard/chalkboards on them. Hence the 3 stars for value. I get that it's all plastic, but, I'm not in the habit of dropping $160 on plastic toys, so I expect the product to last past the first 24 hours of play. Still considering writing the manufacturer to ask for replacements.
It's really a great toy. Encourages pretend play and seems to thoroughly entertain my 18 month old. Not sorry I bought it, but, trusting that LT's will do the right thing!
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