Last Monday, the Easter holidays started on such a high note for us, we had a cracking (see what I did there!) time. We had been invitied to go to Build A Bear as an early Easter treat. We have walked passed Build A Bear many a time, and even popped in and taken a peek at how it works but for one reason and another we had never actually built a bear.
Therefore the children were really excitied and had already been on the Build A Bear website to work out which bear they wanted and also to took look at the accessories. When we arrived I was surprised by how busy it was for the first day of the school holidays. AS we approached the store we were welcomed by a greeter which is always a good sign of customer service in my book. Once in the store we were welcomed by Matt who was expecting us.
He was enthusiastic and immediately chatting to my three. He explained how the process worked and let them choose the skin of the bear.
Next we were off to the sound machine and giving our chosen bears a voice. I had helped Erin choose a a gorgeous velour bear and we choose the one in six option that says thing like ‘I love you’ Dylan on the otherhand had picked a monkey and choose a monkey giggle as his sound.
The next stage was going to the fluff station where the bear is stuffed. Again the children are given control, they have to activate the machine but also decided how soft / hard they want their bear to be.
During the making process the staff were all excellent with the children and it was very busy for them. However they were giving excellent customer service and interacting with all the children in the store.
Once stuffed with their hearts in place came the grooming and dressing. I found Dylan over at the grooming station fluffing up his monkey with the hairbrush.
Matt then offered the children a outfit each – and the older two were amazed by the choice. It takes Chloe a while to sort out her own outfit for the day and she spent AGES choosing an outfit. However she was not rushed atall and she enjoyed having a good look before choosing. Dylan was easier as soon as he spied the football kits he knew what his monkey would be wearing, although he did have a wobble when he saw the Jedi Knights and Darth vadar outfits! However he stuck with the full on Chelsea kit (his second team as they didn’t do a Villa Kit!).
Again choosing the outfit is not the end of the experienced you are encouraged to dress your bear in the shop. Finally once dressed you make the birth certifacte for your bear. This bit is really clever and special. I was told that each bear has a code inside it and if you have made a birth certifcate the details are stored, then if you ever lose your bear and he is returned to a build a bear shop they can reunite the owner – what a great idea. Chloe really enjoed putting in the details and creating the birth certificate.
Again the smallest details are important at Build A Bear and the birth certificate is rolled and given a ceremonial ribbon just like you would recieve at a graduation. The bears are then lovingly placed into big boxes that the children can carry home.
Since bringing the bears home they have been everywhere with us. Dylan is especially attached to his monkey and it is named Torres and is fast becoming an extension of Dylan! I was also told about the birthday parties they can hold, each party member makes a bear and party games are played. I thought this sounded like a great idea if you want a smaleer memorable party. The parties start at £9.50 with a minimum of six children.
I would like to thank Build A Bear again for the fab time we had, the staff at Bristol we exceptional and the children had a throughly great time. We were given the bears as gifts from Build A Bear but the thoughts and opinions expressed are all my own.