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How popular is your name - or the one you've chosen for your child? The NameVoyager is a Java-based application showing you the trends of names in America during the past century. Simply click and type in an initial or name and zoom in to see its ranking for each decade.

In a netshell: In a net shell: Innovative.

The web is a wonderful way to keep relatives and friends up to date with the growth of younger family members. If you don't know HTML, use this free site to track your child's growth and development with photos, guestbook, statistics, milestones, graphs and "wee mail" service. Keep the site private with a password or share it with the world.

In a netshell: Brag page.

Mom's Minivan
Keep the kids quiet on family road trips with more than 101 travel games (organised by age group), safety info and tips. Bright ideas include printable games and songs, travel journals, string figures, scavenger hunts, car sickness prevention tips and their worst "barf" stories.

In a netshell: Are we there yet?

Hear how people from different countries imitate the sounds of animals and vehicles in this collection of "onomatopoeia" from around the world. This unusual interactive project compares pronunciation of sounds by presenting them side by side with their respective flag. Choose an animal from the border to listen or submit your own recording.

In a netshell: Animal crackers.

With all the strife in the world, our kids could use some fun. Dip into more than 12,000 children's jokes in categories from animals to sports. Check the A-Z of knock knocks for a joke to suit your name or play an online game.

In a netshell: Kid safe.

FamilyFun Toy Awards 2002
The next generation is shaping up okay, if the top 10 toy list is any indication. Among the top 10 this year were a Barbie ATM savings machine and four cooking toys. Each year, America’s FamilyFun Magazine rounds up a bunch of kids to spend 30,000 hours testing toys. You’ll also find age-specific toys in 18 categories, from arts and craft to radio controlled, along with photos and reviews.

In a netshell: Santa’s helper.

I Used To Believe
Remember the moment a childhood belief was shattered? This site collects those surprisingly common memories, from bad habits such as thumb sucking to a primal fear of toilets.

In a netshell: True confessions.

Dr Toy
The vast world of toys offers much more than just Barbie, Barney, Beanie Babies, Blue's Clues and Pokemon. Pick up tips on choosing the perfect toy for various ages, skills and interests or view the Top Toys of 2001 list. Find ideas on safety, hygiene, classic toys, games en route, the best videos, family-safe sites and even how to get rid of toys.

In a netshell: In a net shell: Play safe.

talking with kids about the news
“TALK with your kids … before everyone else does.” That’s the motto of this site offering tips for parents and other carers on explaining the news to children. The flood of information during a world crisis is overwhelming enough for adults, but what about the kids? Talking with children early and often about the stories and images they see and hear can help them better understand the world around them. This site tackles terrorism as well as other tough topics, such as violence, sex, drugs and alcohol, death and divorce.

In a netshell: Free the children.

A Canadian single mum set up this site to help other parents wanting to sing to their children. You'll find complete lyrics (and some sound files) to more than 2000 kids' songs including traditional and silly songs, lullabies, action songs and fingerplays and songs from around the world. Other goodies include games, stories, cards, news about children's music and links to recordings, songbooks, sheet music and other printed material.

In a netshell: Sing it.

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Bobby Approved (v 3.2) Unusual Corporate Gifts other than a Gift Basket

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