Thursday, December 4, 2008

Imaginations Toy & Furniture Co. will be having a release party for Sesame Street Playground, 
Putumayo Kids’ newest CD/DVD!
Families may join us for activities, coloring, 
a fun sing along session and more! 
Where:  Imaginations @ 1531 South Main Street, Blacksburg, VA.  Ph: 540-951-8515
When:  Sunday, December 7, 2008, starting at 12:30pm
Listen to a few songs from the CD on the e-card link below:

Launch the e-card now!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Wonderful Weekends

at  Imaginations 

Sat., Dec. 6th- Noon- 4pm Book Signing by Local Author Angel Valiant

Sun., Dec. 14th - Noon- 6pm

Playmobil Play Day  

-Lots of Playmobil out to play with!

Sun., Dec. 21st - Noon - 6pm

Christmas Crafts

-let the kids make a present while you finish up your shopping!


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Get a jump start on your holiday shopping and help out the Down Syndrome Association of the NRV!

On Monday, November 10th from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm  Imaginations Toy and Furniture Company will be open to assist families with their holiday shopping.  There will be light refreshments and personnel on hand to help with gift giving ideas.  Plus, special catalog ordering is available for items that may be of interest for those with special needs.   There are gift ideas for every age from birth to adult. And, 10% of all purchases from the evening will be donated to the Down Syndrome Association of the NRV. 

So you can bring your children or leave them at home, but come out to Imaginations Toy & Furniture Co. at 1531 South Main Street in Blacksburg. Enjoy stress free shopping and support your local down syndrome organization.

For additional information, you may contact the DSNRV organization at 961-5001 or or Imaginations Toy and Furniture Company at 540-951-8515 or  

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The employees can't find anything!

I spent all day Sunday rearranging the toy store...planning for the upcoming holidays. There are still a few things that haven't found a new home yet, and more new toys are arriving daily, but the fun has certainly begun!  AND, we're wrapping and doing layaways for the holidays already! Come visit soon!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

BC Erasers

Ice Cream and Frogs and Hamsters! Oh my! 
We just received a new shipment of BC Erasers, the fun little erasers (that I'm not sure anyone actually erases with).  Children of all ages (and several adults) like to collect & trade these fun little fellows.  They're only $1.00 each, so stop by and start your own collection!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Let's sing and dance!

We just received this new display from Tune A Fish Recordings.

It is so much fun! You can push a button on the play system and 

browse through all the songs on a CD.  I think my favorite one is

Dan Zanes and Friends', "Catch That Train".  Come by and 

hear some new songs!  

Saturday, August 9, 2008

We now sell individual 
wooden blocks! 
BEKA blocks- 
Made in 
St. Paul, MN
from solid maple.

Gentle on the planet. 
Gentle on the children.

Sales Reps...our 'behind the scenes' heroes!

This is me & Don Carswell, one of my favorite reps.  He has been selling toys to us, and lots of other stores and toy catalog groups, for over 12 years! (Are we really that old, Don?).  Three to four times a year, Don drives down from Richmond, where he lives with his wife and 2 beautiful daughters, and spends most of the day with us.  

He represents 24 different toy companies, so we have a lot of catalogs to look through. Believe it or not, it is exhausting!  I think it is easier, sometimes, to unload boxes and be on my feet all day.  Sitting, looking at catalogs and trying to decide which toys to buy (spending all that money) is hard work, but I LOVE it.  It is so much fun trying to find the perfect toys that the children will play with for a long, long time.  I do worry about picking things kids won't like, or choosing something that won't sell, and then we're stuck with it. (No sending it back to the company!)  It's a challenge buying just the right playthings that our customers will love, that also are safe, fun and educational.  

There are many, many choices to make, and all of our wonderful sales representatives help so much.  They can give us advice about what they have seen other stores order, and let us know when something is not selling well.  They inform us about toy safety, company specials, shipping issues and new toys that we MUST have.  So, the next time you come in and see me sitting at the front table with someone, it's probably a rep.- just have a seat and help me pick out a few things! 

I want to say 'Thanks, Don' and thank you to all my other fantastic sales reps., it would be much harder without you!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hello from southwest Virginia!
It is so beautiful this morning, I wanted to stay at home and play in my yard.  But, I remembered I had one of our wonderful sales reps. coming today and the thoughts of working in the yard were left behind.  I was excited to come and play with Don instead!  He should have some new toys to show us, and we'll be planning a lot of the Christmas ordering.  I know! It seems too early (and hot) to think about the holidays, but, in retail we have to start working on our 'Hot Toy' list now.

I also thought I would start sharing some pictures of our staff with you.  Our 'Toy Experts' are so much fun!  I hope you'll come in and meet them soon!! 
This is Glisyn.  She is our resident entertainer. She had visions of moving to NYC and being famous, but instead she's wearing a hula skirt and putting on performances for our customers daily!  She started out running our property management office, then was quickly drawn in to the toys.  She still rents our apartments to many of the VT Hokies, but she can't resist trying out all the new games and dress up clothes!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Winners. The Losers. and The Ruckus Man.

Happy July! I hope you had a wonderful 4th of July, loaded with family, friends, fun and fireworks! 

I wanted to tell you about a wonderful trip we just returned from.

We traveled to the ASTRA (American Specialty Toy Retailers Association) Conference several weeks ago, at Foxwoods, CT.  Besides attending informative, educational classes, visiting with representatives of the great companies we carry, and meeting lots of other toy store owners, we had the privilege of  spending time with Tom and Marlene England.  (pictured on the right, above, that's Keith and I on the left). Tom and Marlene own Dancing Bear Toys & Gifts in Fredrick, MD.  We met them last year at the same convention, and hit it off right away.  

Before we went our separate ways last year, we had come up with a friendly competition.  One of our favorite games, in both of our stores, is 'Ruckus', a great card game that's easy and fun to play.  Dan Levy (pictured in the center, above) is the creator, and he had just come out with a new card game, called 'Pile It'.  We decided we would see who could sell more of his new game during the holiday season of 2007.  

Well, before I tell you the results, I should say tell you something else.  Imaginations, in Blacksburg, has sold more of the 'Ruckus' game than any other store in the world.  Over 3,000!  So, not to brag too much, but, we a few boxes (okay a few cases!).  Tom and Marlene are great sports, and have vowed to pay their debt; which is a visit to Blacksburg, BEARing the gift of Maryland crabs.  Of course, we just want them to come see us, so crabs or not, we can't wait for your trip to southwest VA, England family!!  Check out their wonderful store if you're passing through Fredrick sometime.   

If you haven't played 'Ruckus' or 'Pile It' before, come on in.  We'd love to teach you how!

Keep checking here, because I'll post more details about the awesome ASTRA conference soon!  

Sidewalk Sale This Weekend!

It's that time of year again- our annual Summer Sidewalk Sale!  Starting tomorrow, Friday, July 11th & Saturday, July 12th.  10am-6pm both days.  There will be tables outside and inside, full of lots of discounts!  25-70% off!!  PLUS, Annie Kay's (our favorite health food store, located next door), will have $1, $2, and $3 shopping carts full of great deals.  Don't miss it!!

P.S- if you're going to be in Roanoke, Friday or Saturday, visit Imagination Station at 2126 Colonial Avenue.  We have set up the 'Bargain Basement', with lots of discounted toys!
It's time to get some good deals, and go ahead...start thinking about Christmas shopping this weekend!  

Friday, June 13, 2008

It's Summer Time!!  Yeah!
The kids are out of school and mom's are already looking for things to do...and with gas at $4.00 a gallon, you have to look close to home!

So, we're trying to help! Next Friday, June 20th, bring the gang to Imaginations for Zany Zoo Day!  We'll have the store set up like a zoo, where you can learn about all kinds of different animals.  Plus, we're going to have REAL baby goats!  One of our employees' family has a goat farm, and she's going to bring 3 of their new babies here to play! We're very excited!!  There will be snacks, goodie bags, animal info cards, and lots of new toys for you to see.  We hope you can join in the fun...

Mark your calendars now!  
Zany Zoo Day at Imaginations!
Friday, June 20th from Noon - 4pm

Friday, April 25, 2008

Subaru Sustainability Tour Coming to town!

It's Subaru Sustainability Tour day!  
From 10am-5pm today, (Saturday, April 26th), Annie Kay's (our health food store next to the toy store) is hosting a 'leg' of this fun day.  The folks at Shelor Motor Mile are bringing over two 2009 Subaru Foresters and letting people test drive them.  THEN, after test driving,  you will receive a $25.00 gift certificate to Annie Kay's!  Everyone that test drives then gets entered into a drawing for a $500.00 gift certificate!We have 3 tents set up in the parking lot, with activities, free goody bags, kids coloring books, and lots and lots of tastings.  It's going to be great fun!!Come by and see us today to check out sustainability ideas and test drive the all-new Forester!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Hello and Happy Spring!
We have had a wonderful few weeks at the store.  Everyday new items are arriving!  It's like Christmas when we rush back to see what UPS or FedEx brought us.  Most of my employees like the process of opening boxes and pricing the new toys.  I love finding a new home for them in the store!  

So, if you haven't been in the store in a while, you need to come for a visit! 

Here's a few of the new items you'll see:
- 'Snap Circuits', 'Electronic Lab', and Solar kits from Elenco!
- Stacking, sorting, spinning, and rolling baby toys from Small World's IQ Baby!
- 'Gertie' Balls,'Stomp Rockets', Kites, and Sand & Water toys for lots of outside fun!
- 'Rush Hour', 'Cover Your Tracks', 'Bananagrams', 'Zingo', 'Wordigo'...all great games!
Zoomorphs!!  You have to see the new sets of animals you can create!
Chewable Jewells, the fun, safe, adorable jewelry for moms to wear, and babies to teeth on!
- Organic cotton teethers and rattles for babies.
- Organic and Recycled Bean Bags

+ much, much just need to come see for yourself!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The bunny is hopping down the trail next week!

Happy Wednesday!
Believe it or not, Easter is next weekend!  That means the bunny only has a few shopping days left to pick up all the easter basket 'stuffers'. 

So, because it's come up on us so quickly, I have decided to stay open late next Saturday evening, (March 22nd).  We'll be open 10:00 am-8:00 pm for all the last minute shopping.  AND...if you'll plan on coming in between 6pm-8pm that night, I'll give you 15% off any purchase if you print out this post!!  I'll also set out some snacks and maybe I'll have a gift bag or two to give away! 

It will be lots of fun!  Hope to see you then,

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Toylady's got a new Blog!

Hello! and welcome to the Toylady's first blog posting!  
I'm not too clear on what all I can do on this, or if anyone will be interested, but here we go! It's all about toys and playing, so at least we'll have fun!!  :)

First, a little about us...
My name is Paula Bolte.  My husband (Keith) & I own Imaginations Toy & Furniture Co. in Blacksburg, VA, and Imagination Station in Roanoke, Va.  I've been the Toylady since March, 1997.  Back then, there was no internet shopping, no Target close by, only a small Wal-Mart and not much other competition.  Now, you can find anything you want online, in a catalog or walking the aisles of most big-box stores.  What makes our stores unique?  Our customer service, unique selection of toys and furniture, and all the exciting play things we have out for children (and adults) to play with!  I work really hard to find wonderful, safe toys that kids can play with for many years.  

We also offer fun, fanciful, free gift wrapping, so if you're running late for a party or baby shower, you can run in and out quickly.  You can even call us, give us age and price range and we'll have it wrapped and waiting for you when you get here. 

Easter is less than 2 weeks away, time has changed and I can hear the birds singing outside my office window! Hopefully, Spring is here and we can all go outside and play! I hope you will come for a visit and see all the great new toys we have received.  I'll post a listing soon of some of the new items, and I'll see if I can figure out how to put pictures on this!

Thanks for checking out our blog!  Please let me know if you have any suggestions.