Thursday, February 16, 2017

Find Miranda in New Zealand

Find Miranda in New Zealand by Gaby Suhl
Published by Golly Family Limited, RRP $24.99

Follow Miranda the sheep on a hide and seek adventure around New Zealand – the first book in a fabulous new series for children, complimented by a range of handmade soft toys!

 Travel with Miranda while trying to spot her in the different photos. Places in the North Island include: Cape Reinga, Mangonui, Whangaroa Harbour, Waitangi, Kerikeri, Kawakawa, Hokianga Harbour, Rawene, Waipoua Forest, Ka Iwi Lakes, Matakana, Auckland, Mount Manganui, Hamilton, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Napier, Fielding, Woodville and Wellington. Places in the South Island include: Riwaka, Nelson, Kaikoura, Greymouth, Hokitika, Christchurch, Rangitata, Lake Matheson, Wanaka, Cardrona, Arrowtown, Queenstown, Oamaru and Dunedin

 Perfect for children from about 4 plus. Children will love this book: the difference from a normal hide and seek book is the soft toy. Having Miranda the sheep as their friend in real life, makes the book seem more real. They can not only play with the toy, but also take it on their own hide and seek adventures.  Find Miranda is the first of a series of ‘Find’ books, other toys will feature in different countries in the future!

The toys are all handmade in New Zealand by Gaby. Her grandma used to make her toys when she was a kid. Gaby always thought she did miracles with that sewing machine, so a few years ago she thought: ‘maybe the ability to sew is genetic!’ and she decided to give it a go too. In the process Gaby discovered knowing how to sew is not genetic, but after some practise she can do it as well.


It takes about 1.5 hours to make each of the toys. There are no small parts so they are safe for small children. Filling is Poly-Fill which is non-allergenic. They are mostly made of fleece with different materials for the legs. The process of making a new toy is very organic. Some of the toys are drawn first and then the sewing process starts, and some of them get sewn before even sketching. What's common to all of them is the fact that it takes MANY attempts for Gaby to be happy with them and start the process of making them to sell. She creates their personalities after she sees the finished toy.

The toys are created as collectables. They are all part of the same dysfunctional but loving family. The Golly Family so far consists of:

Miranda, the sheep: loves hiding inside pillow cases. Favourite things are colourful marshmallows and tickles under her nose.
Matilda, the bear: loves travelling and trying new flavours which has got her into trouble more than once. She can be seen at food markets all around the world licking products from the stalls.
Amelia, the giraffe: Since leaving Africa, Amelia has been very cold, however she has been unable to find a scarf that will cover her long neck. Amelia loves dandelions, watermelon iced tea and burying herself in the sand.
Hugo, the cat: Hugo has a bit of trouble trusting others, however once he gets to know you he will become your most loyal friend. His favourite thing in the world is dipping his whiskers in tuna milkshake.

Hector, the bunny: he is the friendliest and most forgetful of all members of the Golly family. He loves beetroot pie and tickles under his ears. He is allergic to carrots!

Alfonso, the dog: Alfonso needs to be closely monitored since he has an obsession with yellow buttons. If there are any in the house, he should be kept at a safe distance from them. Favourite things in the world are dipping celery sticks in maple syrup and jumping on beds.

Milo, the elephant: Milo is a very sweet elephant. If you let him, he will surround you with his trunk and cuddle up with you till you fall asleep. Favourite things in the world are broccoli and peanut butter sandwiches, and digging his trunk into bags of rice.


How the Golly Family started

‘My partner's son had a bunny he loved. For his birthday, my partner made him a book, where he took photos of the bunny hidden in different locations around Auckland. The book was a success. Fast forward a couple of years...I started creating different toys, each with their own personality, and one night while thinking how to make them unique I thought about the bunny’s adventures. Why not take each of the members of this unique soft toy family to different countries, and show children different cultures while trying to find the hidden toy?’ Gaby Suhl

The name Golly Family
Golly is a merge between Gaby’s name and her partner Oli. Originally the name was going to be Goli Family, however since the word Golly is very similar and it is used to express surprise or delight, they thought it would match perfectly this dysfunctional family of toys, so they changed the Goli for Golly.

Money goes to charity
For every book or toy sold, $1.00 goes to MANA (Mother Administered Nutritive Aid). MANA is an organisation that fights malnutrition around the world

‘Just three servings of MANA a day can save the life of a starving child. MANA is a ready-to-use therapeutic food that’s been carefully formulated to provide all of a child’s basic nutritional needs. It’s easy for a mother to open, easy for a child to eat, and as tasty as peanut butter.’

About Gaby Suhl
Gaby was born and raised in Argentina. After finishing her vet degree, she decided she wanted to travel and see the world. In 2004 she landed in New Zealand and fell in love with the country. She has made New Zealand her home ever since. After working for Microsoft Licensing for seven years, she decided she would like to explore her creative side. With a passion for creating imaginary characters and showing children the world she was fortunate enough to see, Golly Family was created in 2015. Her desire in making the soft toys is to recreate the special toy you had as a kid; that toy that could not be left behind. To make sure each character is unique, she lovingly crafts each and every one of them.

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