Countdown to the Year of the Pig: Dragon Dance 80102 [Review]

As we approach the eve of the Year of the Pig, I would like to look at another of the sets released for the Chinese ‘Spring Festival’

The 80102 Dragon Dance has been enthusiastically awaited after the initial images arrived last November, and the set has been hotly sought after, in part due to its relative scarcity outside of Asia. In Melbourne, both this set and 80101 Chinese New Year Family Dinner have literally flown off the shelves, with long queues, household limits and disappointed customers being frequent occurrences at the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre store.

I can see the appeal of this set on many levels: as a seasonal set, it is one of the first sets released, outside of the ‘Year of the…..’ series, for this significant day in the Asian Cultural Calendar, touching on subject matter rarely covered previously, featuring bright colours, and a movement function, coupled with limited global distribution to the Asia Pacific Region – this set has very little to be negative about.

This set has 622 parts, and costs $AUD79.99 new. The retail channels for this set have been limited in Australia. Certainly, demand for this set has been high in the rest of the world, and it will be interesting to see what approach might be taken with this type of set in the future.

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Countdown to the Year of the Pig: Brickheadz Dragon Dance Guy [review]

With the Lunar New Year just around the corner, I though I might take a look at the Dragon Dance Guy, the first Brickheadz character to be released for this particular seasonal event. The dragon dance is a frequently performed at Chinese New Year, or Spring Festival, traditionally to celebrate a successful Harvest. The dragon is thought to bring prosperity and good luck. It is also believed that the dance will scare away evil spirits.

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Countdown to the Lunar New Year [Year of the Pig 40186 – Review]

We are now counting down to the start of the Year of the Pig. This year, we have seen a number of sets released to commemorate this event, as the LEGO Group seeks to increase its market share in Asia. We have previously mentioned 80101 New Year’s Eve Family Dinner and 80102 Dragon Dance – these APAC exclusive sets have been in high demand: literally flying off the shelves as soon as they arrive. We have also seen the release of the Brickheadz Dragon Dance Guy, and the Year of the Pig 40186.

This last set is one I would like to look at today. The fifth in the series – following on from previous sets Year of the Dog, Year of the Rooster, Year of the Monkey and Year of the Sheep – 40186 The Year of the Pig is available as a Gift With Purchase at selected locations now. In Australia, it is available through the LEGO Certified Store (GoldCoast), LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Store (Melbourne) and selected Myer Stores (including their online store). Before you get to take it home, however, you have to spend $88 in store. I found mine at Myer Doncater, during the closing days of their stocktake sale ( which meant that most LEGO® sets were selling for 20% off).

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The Rambling Brick’s Advent-ure #20

Today we continue out journey through Christmas Holiday seasonal sets with a quick look the 40223 Snowglobe. Released in 2016 as a gift with purchase in 2016, it has 215 parts, and comes with a Santa minifigure. Santa stands on a brick built plinth, along with a Christmas tree, sealed in with white round tiles, which fail to suspend themselves magically in the air, as shown in the box art…

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The Rambling Brick’s Adventure #19

Yesterday, I struggled to work out the nature of the the decoration that was unwrapped in yesterday’s Friend’s Advent Calendar, and an astute reader pointed out that his daughter felt it was a micro version of the 40139 Gingerbread House released in 2015. Having had that pointed out to me, I cannot unsee that version of the truth. So today, I thought I’d have a quick look at some of the gingerbread houses that have been produced as seasonal sets over the years.

According to Wikipedia, baking gingerbread was exclusively the domain of specialised gingerbread bakers, except at Easter and Christmas times, when anybody was allowed to bake it! Ginger bread houses became a popular construction in Germany during the early 1800s after the publication of the Brother’s Grimm’s Hansel and Gretel, where the witch’s candied house became the centrepiece of the story. Some food historians claim they were already popular at the time, and the the Brothers were writing about something they had regularly seen.

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Welcome to the Year of the Dog: 40235

IMG_9956As the Lunar New Year approaches, our minds turn to the Year of the Dog.  Set 40235 has been available in Australian Myer Stores as a Gift With Purchase for purchases of over $AUD88  This is the fourth set in this series, including last year’s year of the Rooster (40234), 2016’s Year of the Monkey(40207) and 2015’s Year of the Sheep (40148). The Year of the Snake set from 2013 (10250) is of a completely different aesthetic: more of the creator 4 in one build able creatures type of set.  I would not include it in the current series. As well as the LEGO elements and instructions, the set comes with an envelope in which to place a gift of money for the recipient of the set. Continue reading

Happy Holidays One and All

As I write this, we are somewhere between Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve. In Australia, this period of time is characterized by alternating between retail discounts, blockbuster cinematic releases and spending time with friends and family.

For the rambling brick family, we have been blessed by bright sun, warm days, and many opportunities for extended napping. We have been staying away from the family LEGO collection, but not entirely brick free. I was fortunate to discover NINJAGO City lying on top of my Christmas Stocking. It was never going to fit in. My wife and I were also given the wedding topper, by way of commemorating our 20th Wedding Anniversary during this period. I am currently writing in secret… Continue reading