Thoughts From The Gameroom

The ramblings of a Euro-gamer from South Dakota

Archive for the ‘Wooden Toys’ Category

Wooden Toys for Christmas 2013

Posted by sodaklady on January 22, 2014

This year saw my husband once again devoting a large portion of his spare time to toy-making. The usual array was joined by a couple new ones.  One of the ladies that he works with has 2 daughters so each Christmas he has to find something new to make for them, and as they get older, the “toy” needs to be more adult-oriented. This year was jewelry boxes in two tones so they can tell them apart. These were made out of his experience and talent, no plans. I love the dark wood!!

A pair of almost-matching jewelry boxes.

A pair of almost-matching jewelry boxes.

Inside is a lift-out box.

Inside is a lift-out box.









Richard made me a train engine and coal car last year so this year I requested a flatbed to haul Christmas packages, and a caboose. The flatbed and caboose have no plans; they were created from the basic idea used for the engine then tinkered with to get the final look.

My working train. The flatbed is for tiny wrapped presents but I didn't get the chance to do them this year.

My working train. The flatbed is for tiny wrapped presents but I didn’t get the chance to do them this year.

One of the other wood worker’s wife has started collecting some of our creations since falling in love with the pull-toy turtle. Last year she received a train engine so this year her train had to grow. Rather than the working train like mine, she has a passenger train. Like my flatbed and caboose, the passenger car had no plan but was made from an idea of what we wanted.

The passenger car and caboose for a friend's train.

The passenger car and caboose for a friend’s train.


I’ve had comments on several of the posts about the toys and I just want to say thank you for your kind words. A few of you have asked for the plans for certain toys, which I will happily point you to the book or magazine from which they came if we can remember. Some toys (like the cradle) have been such a constant staple that we no longer even know where we found them. Other readers have shown interest in buying them but we do not make these for sale–at least not at this time. Maybe when my husband retires and finds out how bored he is. 😉


Posted in Wooden Toys | Tagged: , , | 3 Comments »

Wood Projects: doll high chair & Welcome sign

Posted by sodaklady on December 29, 2011

Doll high chair 2

Here's the chair with the tray forward to allow room to put the doll in the seat.

Doll high chair 1

Here's the chair with the tray back, to hold the doll in place.


One of my husband’s co-workers requested a pair of doll high chairs for her daughters. She had found a picture online that showed the type of thing she was thinking of but it had disappeared before Richard got around to that project. We didn’t have any design plans but we do have plenty of experience so this is the result. I love the sliding tray, so easy but also sturdy.






Richard has recently discovered the joy of scroll saw work so for Christmas he made one of these Welcome plaques for each of our grown children.

Welcome sign


Posted in Wooden Toys | Tagged: , , , | 4 Comments »

This Year’s Wooden Toys

Posted by sodaklady on December 20, 2011

Each year my husband makes toys with the local Woodworker’s Association to give to charitable groups in the area at Christmas time, but he also makes toys for the children of his co-workers. As the years go by, the children grow as does their collection of Richard’s Wooden Toys. (Can I trademark that even if the plans come from books and magazines? 😉 )  This year he had a request for a jet plane and a train engine so along with pull toys, doll cradles, trucks, cars and heart boxes, we now have two new very neat toys. I absolutely love the train engine! My husband, retired air force, is partial to airplanes and has several styles but this is the first jet plane. The plans said it was an F16 but he made sure I knew that it most certainly was not, as F16s have only one engine!

Toys 2011


Posted in Wooden Toys | Tagged: , , , , | 8 Comments »

Santa’s Helpers deliver toys around town

Posted by sodaklady on December 13, 2010

My husband is a member of the Rapid City Woodworkers Association that, each year, make toys for different charities around the city. This year my husband helped make a couple hundred little tractors. The pictures don’t do them justice; they’re cute and sturdy  and perfect for little hands, measuring  2 inches high, 3 inches wide and 5 inches long.

Wooden tractorRows of tractors








Other members of the association made boats, heart boxes, cars, and several other toys, all equally well-crafted and suited for small, enthusiastic owners. Today they took 3 carloads of boxes to WAVI, Benji’s House, and Youth and Family Services.


Here are some of the members of the RCWA.

Boxes of toys for Y&FS






Posted in Wooden Toys | Tagged: | 4 Comments »

Updating My Husband’s Wooden Toys

Posted by sodaklady on July 10, 2010

A comment on a post I made over two years ago reminded me that I wanted to add a picture of the toy turtle he had made for someone else. I finally have my own turtle now and I think it’s cute as can be. The shell is roughly 9″ long and 7 1/2″ wide. The head and tail go in and out as he’s pulled along.

Turtle with the head & tail in...

and with his head & tail out.

This year’s project was a bi-plane, which is also an amazing little design. It even has a tiny pilot. What a great addition to our collection of handmade toys!

Posted in Wooden Toys | Tagged: , , , , | 22 Comments »

My Husband Is One Of Santa’s Elves

Posted by sodaklady on January 5, 2008

It all started with a doll cradle, a design which was improved after our daughter (at the age of 2) sat in hers and broke the bottom out. When Richard retired from the Air Force and started working for a local home center, he decided to build doll cradles for all the people he worked with that had little girls. For the little boys, he found a sturdy design for a dump truck with a handle to lift the bed. (I’m sorry I don’t have a picture of one.) Now every year, he finds new designs and, of course, there’s always a few new cradles to build.

Doll Cradle

The cradles have a cartoon character on one end and the girl’s name on the other.

Wooden toy car

The little car which looks to me like a Volkswagen Beetle, was one of the first and still my favorite.

Grasshopper Pull Toy

The grasshopper was a step in another direction, an animated pull toy, and he had many people ask for  them. A few were modified by request, made wider with holes in the body to hold crayons.

Wooden Steamroller

Last year’s model was a steamroller.

Keepsake Box

For an older girl, he built a small keepsake chest. The curved lid and beautiful dove-tailing made it a lovely piece. Inside is a removable shelf that rests near the top of the box.

Wooden Road Grader and Front-end Loader

This year he built road graders and front-end loaders for the boys.  One of the older ladies he works with got one of each for her two grandsons.  She came to work the day after Christmas and told Richard what a big hit they were.  The toys had not been wrapped but set in front of the packages under the tree so when the children came downstairs on Christmas morning, they were the first thing that caught their eyes.  “Santa’s elves came!”  I can just imagine a child’s amazement to find wooden toys under the tree—the kind they’d seen Santa’s elves building in many movies and cartoons.

 The wonderful thing is that of all the fancy, expensive toys that they received, these two wooden toys were the ones they played with all day.  Could there be a bigger compliment than that?

Posted in Non-gaming, Wooden Toys | 18 Comments »