A couple of months ago, the LEGO Foundation Launched a pilot program to test audio instructions – a tool to enable visually impaired children to build LEGO® sets. In the current pilot program, Audio Instructions are available for LEGO Classic: 11001 Bricks and Ideas, LEGO Friends: 41365 Emma’s Art Studio, The LEGO Movie 2: 70821, Emmet and Benny’s ‘Build and Fix’ Workshop and the LEGO City 60207 Sky Police Drone Chase. I had a copy of 41365: Emma’s Art Studio, provided by the LEGO Group at my request earlier in the year, close at hand, so I thought I test the system out.Continue reading
Here we are, and it is the twenty fourth of December. Since the first of December, we have been visiting the ways in which different LEGO® sets have been but together to celebrate the Christmas Holiday Season. Why have I been doing this? This year is the twentieth anniversary of the release of the first LEGO Advent Calendar. If nothing else I would have just reviewed an advent calendar from each year. But in fact I have found myself spoiled for choice. And I have left things out – I have not really tackled Brick built, non Santa decorations from the early days of the century; I have not mentioned the baubles containing seasonal micro builds; and I remain puzzled about the LEGO Japan exclusives from Christmas 2004. So today, I have chosen a subject that has been getting more and more interesting every year: The LEGO Employee Christmas Gift.
These sets have been produced since 2008, although the 2008 and 2009 sets appear identical, despite seperate set numbers. Initially a simple heart, the constructions have become more elaborate: with subjects having historical significance to the company – either through their direct subject matter, or commemorating a significant anniversary within the company. And you know how I love my significant Anniversaries. [ please note: if you read past the break, there is a spoiler shot of the Box for this year’s Employee Gift. The content will not be revealed.]
We have a few days to go, and a couple of themes to look over as we approach the end of our Advent-ure. Regular readers might recall that this is the 20th anniversary of the first LEGO Advent Calendar, and we have been surveying Christmas holiday themes and set from across the years.
We have seen a number of different brick built Santas over the last couple of weeks and today I would like to look at a subject that has been across many licences and themes in 2018: Brickheadz. This year we have seen a Brickheadz double pack featuring Mr. and Mrs. Claus – 40274 A hot seller, it has been difficult to track down, frequently being out of stock at the LEGO online store.Continue reading
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…Continue reading
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.Continue reading
Today, as we continue our adventure, I thought I’d briefly consider some sets that money can’t buy. Except on the secondary market. Let’s have a look at some sets that have only been released as Gifts with purchase, but designed to help build up the winter Village.
3300014 Winter Sleigh Ride was released in 2011, along side the Winter Village Cottage, and available as a gift with purchase. It again features a lamp post as well as four minifigures, although one has to wait, as the sleigh only has room for three!
As we continue our investigation of Christmas Holiday LEGO® sets, I thought we would return to Christmas decorations today. Specifically decorations given as a gift with purchase. These almost annual decorations tend to become available as a gift with purchase around early December. I have only obtained one over the years, due to the absence of a local LEGO Brand Retail Store and (until recently) a $200 AUD threshold on free shipping for online orders. That is the toy soldier decoration from 2016.