Of all the groups of people to buy gifts for, kids are usually the easiest. Just pick the toys that have the most commercials on TV. Kids are suckers for commercials…I should know since I was a kid once. Oh well. Still, you don’t have to be that obvious in gift giving. You can still be creative and give a kid a toy that’s a bit unique and even (dare I say it) educational. I found a website called Cool Kids Toys From Far Away (www.coolkidstoys.com) that had a number of interesting items. My favorites are the Little Boy/Little Girl Bali Dolls ($39.95), which come dressed in traditional Bali ceremonial garb, a wooden flute ($15.95 and sure to drive parents to drink) and a creepy looking frog mask perfect for scaring the siblings ($22.95). The other good website I found was called Nifty Cool (www.niftycool.com) and had a number of other interesting gift items. I love the Rover the Wind-Up Tin Space Dog ($19.99)…which is exactly what the title implies, plus it sprays sparks! The Supersonic Ear ($21.99) is a listening device perfect for listening in on siblings, parents, enemies, whatever. A splendid time guaranteed for all. The Earth and Sky Telescope ($29.99) allows you to see the wonders of the cosmos, or spy on the neighbors. Lift the Lid on Mummies ($15.96) is a playset that gives facts about mummies and allows you to make one. Illustory: Write and Illustrate Your Own Book ($21.95) is fairly self-explanatory: it contains a blank hardcover book and a tip book allowing the kid to create anything they so desire. My favorite item I found there was called the Little Linguist ($69.99). I really wish I’d had this when I was younger. It’s a device that teaches several different languages through associations and such and moves at the speed of the individual child. It’s a fairly brilliant device, and it teaches everything from English, to French, to Japanese. Wow, color me impressed.