There are few bands that have reached the iconic stature of METALLICA. For over thirty years, the band has been providing the soundtrack for listeners like myself, and today comes the release of the first part of the definitive, two-volume biography of METALLICA. BIRTH SCHOOL METALLICA DEATH: The Biography, Volume 1 (Da Capo Press Music Books) has secured a spot in my 2013 Holiday Gift Guide (For Grownups) here on THE ROCK FATHER, as it would make a fantastic offering for the metal fan on your holiday shopping list. Even better, my friends at Da Capo Press and I have teamed-up to get two lucky readers hooked-up with the brand new hardcover! My copy just arrived here at Rock Father HQ today, and I can't wait to get reading...
FOGHAT has been rockin' for over 40 years, and while they've gotten into the Holiday Spirit a few times before, they're back with their second-ever instrumental... a new, 2013 recording of "Winter Wonderland." Available today on iTunes, this early entry into your 2013 Holiday Playlist can be streamed below, right here on THE ROCK FATHER...
Looking for a great gift idea for that special someone on your Holiday Shopping List? THE ROCK FATHER has some suggestions, and if you haven't already checked out my detailed item features (more roll out daily here), this is the easy-to-skim "Master List," updated daily throughout the Holidays of 2013. Simply scroll-down to see some rockin' gift suggestions, each accompanied by helpful links to learn more.
HOLIDAY MUSIC 2013:
Looking for some brand-new seasonal sounds? Here's eight new releases for 2013 that are pretty much guaranteed to be a big hit at your upcoming holiday gatherings...
PBS KIDS DVDs:
Even before becoming a PBS KIDS VIP (Very Involved Parent) Blogger in 2013, the entertaining and educational programming offered by PBS KIDS was already a daily staple in our home. Here's a selection of new and recent DVD releases that you can share with your family anytime you'd like:
KIDS and FAMILY MOVIES:
It's been a pretty good year for home video releases that appeal to the kids... or to the entire family. Here's some selections hand-picked by The Rock Father, many of which have been enjoyed first-hand here at Rock Father HQ. From Disney to DreamWorks, Scholastic to Shout! Factory, there's a little something for everyone...
GIFTS FOR KIDS:
ANGRY BIRDS STAR WARS II TELEPODS by Hasbro
ANGRY BIRDS STAR WARS is a big deal with kids (and some grownups) right now - the combination of two pop culture icons. From Hasbro comes the new Telepods line, which allows those with an iOS or Android device to teleport their physical toys into their digital game. Learn more about the toys, and enter to win some (through 11/29) right here.
BITTY BABY by American Girl
Designed for girls ages 3+, Bitty Baby is a 15-inch soft-bodied doll available in 11 different combinations of skin tone, eye-, and hair-color, allowing girls to create a one-of-a-kind companion that’s just right for them. Each Bitty Baby doll comes dressed in her signature sleeper, along with a special “wishing star” keepsake toy and a beautifully illustrated Bitty Baby and Me hardcover picture book. Read my full feature on these great dolls, right here.
LITTLE PIM Fun With Languages Gift Sets
Studies show that children under six are at the best age to learn a Foreign Language. Little Pim aims to make it fun and easy through "Entertainment Immersion," combining CDs, DVDs, Books and Flashcards into sets geared toward kids ages birth-6. Little Pim is available in Spanish, German, French, Portuguese, Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Arabic, Hebrew, Russian, and English. Check out my full feature, right here.
BATTROBORG 3-in-1 Battle Arena by TOMY
Almost universally included on all "Hot Toys" lists for the 2013 Holiday season, TOMY's BATTROBORG leads the charge of a year when "battling" has been a big thing. Radio-controlled fighting robots. Read my full feature on Battroborg right here.
MICKEY'S CHRISTMAS CAROL: 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray (Disney)
I still remember seeing MICKEY'S CHRISTMAS CAROL when it was first released into theaters back in 1983. Now, this perennial Holiday staple has been digitally restored for the first-time ever in high definition. As I show this to my children, I highly recommend that you share it with yours.
Read my full review right here.
For 25 Years, Melissa & Doug have been making classic, quality toys for young children. As part of their 25th Anniversary Celebration, their "Terrific 25 Holiday Gifts" highlight the best of the best, and, on Black Friday 2013, they'll be giving them away. Check out full details, right here on The Rock Father.
MY LITTLE PONY: EQUESTRIA GIRLS
Recommended for Ages 5+, these residents of Canterlot High scored big here at Rock Father HQ, and will likely have some staying power. Check out my feature, right here on The Rock Father.
BABY ALIVE REAL SURPRISES BABY DOLL
Recommended for Ages 3+, the BABY ALIVE REAL SURPRISES BABY DOLL is one of this season's hottest toys - making list after list of kid-tested toys that are highly desired. We've put this one to the test, and oh yes... even The Rock Father has changed a diaper or two for Baby Alive. Check out my full feature, right here.
NERF N-STRIKE BLAZIN' BOW BLASTER by Hasbro
Thanks to properties like Disney-Pixar's BRAVE, THE HUNGER GAMES, and the CW's ARROW, archery is popular with kids once more. For boys and girls, kids and grownups alike comes the NERF N-STRIKE BLAZIN' BOW BLASTER. It's fantastic, and you can read my full feature right here.
PAJANIMALS APOLLO GOODNIGHT PROJECTOR by TOMY
If you have little ones, chances are Jim Henson's PAJANIMALS are big in your home, as they are in ours. These cute bedtime staples from PBS KIDS Sprout and NBC Kids have their own line of merchandise now, and this adorable projector features Apollo tucked-into bed while functioning as both a music box and nightlight to sooth your kids to sleep. Read my full review right here.
PAJANIMALS BEDTIME ROUTINE BOARD by TOMY
The second Pajanimals item to make my list, this Bedtime Routine Board features all four Pajanimals - Apollo, Squacky, Sweetpea Sue and Cowbella - each paired with a corresponding nighttime activity: Bath; Pajamas; Brush Teeth; Read Story. Once each task is complete, slide the character into bed for a musical jingle. When they're all tucked in, the full "Lullaby" theme song will play while accompanied by glowing lights. Read my full review and see it in-action here.
BEYWARRIORS SHOGUN STEEL OCTAGON SHOWDOWN BATTLE SET by Hasbro
Recommended for Ages 8+, the BEYWARRIORS SHOGUN STEEL Octagon Showdown Battle Set by Hasbro continues a trend that I've previously-noted here on The Rock Father: Battling is BIG this holiday season. Taking into account this "octagon" shape made popular in extreme fighting, this set works very simply, with two rip-cord-powered Shogun Warriors (they're basically really cool tops) that can be customized to battle. Last character standing, wins. Read my full review and see it in-action here.
B-DAMAN CROSSFIRE Break Bomber Battlefield by Hasbro
Recommended for Ages 6+, this game from Hasbro's B-DAMAN CROSSFIRE line is one more entry into that realm of "stuff that battles" being BIG this Holiday Season. While it's character based in appearance, the B-DAMAN CROSSFIRE Break Bomber Battlefield is a game of skill that's addictive even to grownups, as you face off against an opponent while shooting "marbles" toward a wall of blocks in hopes of knocking them toward the "enemy" side. Read my full review and see it in-action here.
TRANSFORMERS CONSTRUCT-BOTS by Hasbro
Creative building sets that encourage kids to create their own, custom TRANSFORMERS figures from a host of mix-and-match parts, TRANSFORMERS CONSTRUCT-BOTS are a new entry to the market, and to my 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. Want to learn more? Check out my full feature, right here.
Smucker's Gift Boxes and Baskets
On my recent visit to The J.M. Smucker Company in Orrville, Ohio - I had a chance to check out some of their fantastic gift items first-hand. Now, I've hand-picked a few to showcase right here on The Rock Father. Check out my selections right here.
The TETRIS Light was a surprise item that arrived here at Rock Father HQ, but one that was a quick hit and a worthy gift idea. Recommended for Ages 8+, I think it's better suited For Grownups.
Check out my detailed feature on the Tetris Light right here.
BIRTH SCHOOL METALLICA DEATH: The Biography, Volume 1 by Paul Brannigan and Ian Winwood (Da Capo Press Music)
Birth School Metallica Death is the definitive story of the most significant rock band since Led Zeppelin. Volume 1 covers the band’s formation up to their breakthrough eponymous fifth album, aka “The Black Album.”
Check out full details on the book, and enter to win a copy (through 11/29) right here.
VICTORY RECORDS HOLIDAY SWEATSHIRTS
Inspired by the classic "bad Christmas sweaters," Chicago's Victory Records has issued sweatshirts and t-shirts featuring six of their artists: REVEREND HORTON HEAT, THE BUNNY THE BEAR, EMMURE, OTEP, CLOSE YOUR EYES, and TERROR. It's a unique gift for fans of those bands, and if you'd like a chance at winning some? Well, I have that chance for you.
THE BEATLES - ON AIR: LIVE AT THE BBC, Volume 2 (Universal)
The latest offering from arguably the biggest band of all-time is the follow-up to their 1994 LIVE AT THE BBC release, which hit a Beatles-starved public only to sell more that five million copies in less than six weeks. There's few people that don't love The Beatles, and that makes this a great holiday gift. Read my full feature, and enter to win a copy (through 11/29) right here.
DANE COOK - HARMFUL IF SWALLOWED: 10th Anniversary Edition Vinyl (Comedy Central)
For the hardcore comedy fan on your list, this 10th Anniversary Vinyl edition of DANE COOK's debut album is limited to a pressing of just 1000 copies. Even better? It's reasonably-priced, despite it's scarcity. Read more right here.
Today marks the official start of the Holiday Season here at Rock Father HQ, and thanks to my friends at Step2, we're getting off to a massive start. What would you do with a $1,000 Step2 Shopping Spree? I know exactly what I'd start with - the 2013 Pink Corvette Toddler to Twin Bed for Addie, and the Pedal Farm Tractor and Trailer for Finley. But how about for you? A play kitchen, wagon, climber and playhouse? How about a backyard climber and patio furniture? How about, a swing set? There's so many possibilities to ponder, and one lucky reader is going to have their wish granted. Step2 has teamed-up with The Rock Father and some of your favorite parenting blogs to make it happen. Now through November 26, you have a shot at a $1000 Shopping Spree on Step2.com!
It's almost the season to be jolly, and my friends at Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment are gearing up to release their latest seasonal film, HOME ALONE: THE HOLIDAY HEIST. The fifth installment of the HOME ALONE franchise first appeared last year as an ABC Family Movie Event, and this year it comes home on October 29th, arriving on DVD just in time for the holidays. FoxConnect has teamed-up with The Rock Father to get two lucky readers hooked up with copies of the new DVD, and you can find your chance below. Ho Ho Ho!
We don't have HESS EXPRESS stores here in the Midwest, but my friends on the East Coast do, and today comes some pre-Holiday news regarding an annual tradition for those with a Hess nearby: The Hess Toy Truck. For nearly 50 years, families have been picking up and collecting the Hess Toy Trucks, which were introduced by Leon Hess in 1964 as "a fun, high quality and affordable toy for families during the holliday season." While the line has gone beyond just trucks to include vehicles such as a police car, fire engines, a space shuttle, jet, and race cars, this year they're back to trucks, with the 2013 Hess Toy Truck and Tractor. Check it out below...