...as opposed to the plastic jungle of garishly colored, brain-sucking clutter we typically call toys. I just read a post over on Z Recommends about a cool product called thumballs. Thumballs are four or six inch soft stuffed balls that have things printed on the individual panels (12 panels for 4 inch balls and 32 panels for 6 inch balls).
I am particularly excited about their early learner series (numbers, letters, shapes, and animals) as well as their icebreaker version (perfect for the college students I work with). How cool!