Re: Calico critters
I just ordered a set.
My girls played with the 'deluxe village house' at the store and loved it. I'm not sure I thought it was all that great quality to be honest, but got tired of torturing myself with online shopping and just ordered it. It gets better reviews than the townhouse on amazon.
If you google deluxe village house gift set you can find it for about $120 and it comes with one room and one family.
One thing I did like about the house was that you can play with it from different sides so 2 kids can play. I do think that calico critters are a bit little for my 3yr old but I think she'll enjoy it as much as the 8yr old. I'm pretty sure the littlest pet shop animals will be living in the house so I've not bought any more pieces at this point.