Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Toy Awesomeness

Had Barney Stinson accompanied us to the  Suwon Toy Library 아이장난감도서관 today, he surely would have agreed that it is pure awesomeness.

The government runs this program for Korean and multicultural families with young children to borrow toys, books, and dvds. Clark and I signed up today along with another expat mom we know who's also married to a Korean. This is Casey and her almost 8 month-old girl, Ivy.

A friend of Casey's, Gisela, also met us there, but has to wait for a membership (must enter a lottery in March) because both her and her husband are foreign. Here's Gisela's little boy, Iggy, who seemed to be enjoying himself testing out lots of different toys.

We're on probation for the first three months so they can make sure we behave ourselves and abide by their rules. The rules are quite simple, really; we can use our library card to borrow up to two toys and three books at any given time (or one dvd may be sustituted for a book). The borrowing period is ten days, after which late fees are incurred with the fee being decided by the size/value of the toy as per a coloured sticker code.

The place is pretty amazing. Everything is barcoded and has labels telling you the product name, what age group it's appropriate for, & general instructions on how to use it. Then, when you go to the check out counter, they walk you through how to use the toys you're borrowing. Here's Clark at the checkout getting shown how to use the play gym we picked out today.

The most impressive thing is the cleanliness. See the woman in the room behind him? She cleans all of the toys as they're returned. And from what I could tell, she was doing a very thorough job of it.

I think it's pretty safe to say that from this day forward, we will never spend money on toys again!

Here's Bubby at home with a (figuratively speaking) new play gym.


  1. That place is ridonkulous!! Next time I'll try to have a less eventful journey there so I can focus more and check it all out. As it is, Ivy's a majorly happy camper--the box from her grandparents came today so she's in toy nirvana. :)

  2. OH-and we have that SAME play mat!! Great minds, great minds.

  3. That is so cool! I had no idea such a thing existed! How did you find out about this?

  4. Oops..posted under my business account, sorry! >.<

  5. Someone started a thread not too long ago on the Expat Parents Forum about rental shops & it eventually led to the discovery of these gov't run toy libraries. I'm certain there must be one 부천. Go check out the thread and it'll give you more details (or I can). But you're not allowed to go to the toy library now ~ you have to rest!^^

  6. Wow, I'm jealous! I'll never get to use it though :(