From the Cabbage Patch dolls of decades ago to Tickle Me Elmo a few years back, there's always one hot toy that the kids are dreaming of during the holidays.
Well, we have the rundown of what will be making their wish lists this year, along with a few tips on how to be sure you get your hands on them.
In the Hall household during the holidays, royalty rules.
"We are all about princesses in our house. We have little tiny princesses, big princesses, medium princesses," said mom Krystyn Hall.
But figuring out what to buy the other kids in her life is an issue. And that's where Toy Insider mom Laurie Schacht saves the day. She says ultimately, there are four hot groups to select from. The first is tech, no matter what the age.
"They're swiping before they're speaking sometimes and we're really embracing it because they're really learning the digital skills that they need for the 21st century," said Schacht.
For the little guys, the Leap Pad Two is out now with a second camera and faster processor. Meantime, the iPad is all the rage for just about every other age. And now, your tech can actually turn into the game controller. A car and Y-Spy Helicopter are sure to be hot.
"Once they're airborne, they can take pictures, videos and share on all their social networks immediately," said Schacht.
Want something more traditional than tech? Construction toys are the second category. Lego is out with a line for girls these days. There are also chunkier versions for toddlers with littler hands. Even Angry Birds is into the build-it craze.
"You're actually building the Angry Bird set, just like you see on the app," said Schacht.
Crafts are the third category. From the huge toy train you can color and crawl through, to the Crayola marker air brush to the Haute Couture fashion design set.
"Comes with fabric and cloth and everything they need, including mannequins and a real working sewing machine," said Schacht.
Pop culture rounds out the final toy category and this year, Chuggington is taking train fans to a new level. It's over two feet high. The radio controlled Batman car comes pre-programmed with commands. Disney's Doc McStuffins is in demand, along with Merida and Angus, her horse built for the brave.
Click here to find the full Toy Insider list of 2012 holiday toys.
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