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We got this when my son was around the 6 month mark. He loved it then and still does now although interacts with it in different ways. I think he'll definitly continue to enjoy it for the next 6 months (taking him up to 2 years). It has a few different features -A book with a spiral bind. The pages are quite sturdy and not hugely breakable. - A chunky keyboards with 5 keys of different notes - A microphone- You have to get quite close to it for it to amplify your voice. My son at the moment lieks to put it right to his mouth and just go "AHHHH" down it! It crackles quite a bit. - A drum button which sets of a drum beat. - 5 musical notes buttons which when pressed play different nursery rhymes. - A dog. I dont really know his purpose, you just wiggle him around he woofs! This is fine by my son though as dogs are one of his favourite animals and he likes to point at it and say "dog" and imitate the woofing noise. The keyboard also lights up, this was one of the things that had my son entranced when we first got it. Now i think he prefers the musical activity and the interactivity- he cant get enough of pushing the buttons. Its a vtech toy, as a brand I love vtech we rarely find a toy by them we dont like although I do think they can be quite pricey! As Ive found with some other vtech toys the two volume options are both particuarly loud! The toy takes 4xAA batteries which screw in at the back. The battery life for this toy is great, we dont use this toy everyday but my son is now 18 months and we havent yet had to change the batteries. They are in need of replacement though as in the last few days the toy will go a little slow or out of tune but for almost a years worth I think thats great. You can get these from around £15 at Debenhams, they seem to be a bit pricier elsewhere. I think £15 is a good price but I dont think I'd want to may more but maybe I'm a little stingy! However I like the variety of features and the chunky keys are great for little fingers. I would definitly reccomend as a Christmas present for your (or someone elses!) baby.
Our daughter loves this little piano. It has several different activities to keep little ones amused. The piano keys at the bottom play different notes when you press them and the corresponding light above lights up. they are brightly coloured and have little pictures on. Then there is a little white disk to the left and to be honest i have never really understood what this is, maybe it is meant to be a kind of drum? The best feature for our daughter is the microphone, she loves singing (more like shouting!) into it and hearing her voice amplified, she finds this fascinating and it makes us laugh watching her! Then there is a story book this is really just two plastic sheets with pictures one and it allows you to use the piano in activity mode, our daughter is too young for this but she likes turning the pages. Finally there is the little conductor joystick, he wobbles around when you move him but again it has never been clear exactly what he does? He seems bark and make the lights flash but that's all? all in all this is a nice little toy but not very simple to operate (even for an adult) It is nice and colourful and has two sound settings which is always a bonus. Nice toy but a bit confusing
This is a toy that we inherited from my Auntie as my cousin is about a year and a half older than my youngest daughter so we have had quite a few things passed down from her. The toy is by Vtech and I do tend to like Vtech toys and so do my children, I trust Vtech toys as I have never found a really bad one. My daughter was given this piano when she was about a year old and it is kept at my parents house and although it isn't a toy she plays with everyday she still often plays with it. I have had a look for the purposes of this review and you can buy this toy currently at Argos for £22.99 which I would say is about the right price as it has loads of activities on it to keep little ones interested. The toy is aimed at children who are aged 6 months and over which I would say is about right as really it is about the age they begin to sit up. The toy runs off 4 x AA batteries which came with it when w3e got it but my Auntie may have put them in, the battery pack is on the underneath of the toy and shut with a screw so your child cannot accidentally open it. The toy has two volume controls which I always like as generally in my house both children will decide to play with noisy toys at the same time. The piano is made of mainly white plastic, there is a book on a spiral bind at the top and the pages are made of thick cardboard with a sort of laminated finish, there are 5 big chunky keys to the keyboard and then there is a microphone and a couple of other buttons and rollers for your child to play with so there is loads to keep their attention. The toy is very brightly coloured as you would expect from a baby toy and once my daughter is playing with it it really does hold her attention for quite long periods of time. The book plays a big learning part to this toy, it has different things on each page, there is a page of animals, a page of shapes and a page of nursery rhymes. Depending on what page the book is on when a key is pressed on the keyboard is corresponds to the book, the blue key is for the circle and the elephant, the orange key is for the triangle and the monkey, the red key is for the square and the cat, the yellow key is for the heart and the pig and finally the green key is for the star and the bird. When you press each key it will announce the corresponding shape or animal depending which page you are on which I think is a great way for your little one to learn. I can sit and play with my daughter and point to the things that the keyboard is announcing to help her learn which I think is really good and gives an easy way for parents to help their children learn along with the toy. The nursery rhymes option plays 5 different well known nursery rhymes which we love to sing along to and for all my daughter barely even speaks yet she makes noises in tune with the rhymes which I think is really cute. The green gives you row, row, row your boat, the yellow frera Jacque, the orange pop goes the weasel which Emily laughs at when we sing pop, the red gives a song of three little kittens and the blue is ring o ring o roses which Sophie likes to do the actions to for Emily. The microphone on the toy isn't really that could and just really crackles more than anything else. There is a little dog button which when wiggled will say woof woof and a drum button which of course sounds like a drum. All of the buttons are really easy to press so they are great for little hands and they don't need you constantly setting things off for them. I like this toy for how easy it is to interact with and help your child learn, my daughter enjoys playing with it but doesn't play with it all the time but when she does she plays for ages with it. I would recommend this toy as a really good educational toy will added fun value.
I don't actually remember who got this for my daughter as every birthday and christmas she receives so many gifts I never remember where they have come from! In any case when she was 18 months old she received this as a present and even now that she is 3 she still gets a lot of amusement from it! It has a book element which on one page has shapes, the next page, animals, and on the final page nursery rhymes. These coincide with the 5 keys - red , orange, yellow, green and blue. Switching the pages is easy to activate the different settings so this is simple to do. ~Shapes~ When on this page the Triangle is Orange, the Circle is Blue, Heart is yellow, Square is red and Star is green. So when my little one presses the blue key on the keyboard for example it says "circle" which is good for her learning shapes and colours simultaneously. ~Animals~ Monkey - Orange Cat - Red Pig - yellow Bird - green Elephant - Blue. This is good as I can interact with my daughter now and she can learn colours and animals. So If I point to the picture of the elephant I ask her what colour it is (the picture of the elephant is blue) and then on the keyboard, the blue key also has a picture of an elephant so she learns to make association by understanding the elephant is blue, she presses the blue key and it makes a noise of an elephant (aaa-roooo!!! Yes that is my elephant noise!) ~Nursery~ This page is the most fun as my daughter absolutely loves nursery rhymes! Row, row, row your boat - green Three little kitens - red Ring-a-ring-a roses - blue Pop goes the weasel - orange Frere Jacques - Yellow By pressing the coluours on the keyboards this allows for different songs to be sung by the keyboard. My daughter loves row, row, row your boat so she repeatedly presses the green button and sings along and does the actions! (Pretending to row a boat of course!) It should be noted the songs don't last very long and so would be good if the songs sang both versions which I normally sing for her! There are other features which include a basic drum, and a little blue dog which when moved, and makes a music sound and cute little woof woof. There is also a microphone which is extremely short so doesn't move off the holder, so it's annoying my daughter can't really take it off and pretend to have a sing a long on it, she has to lean forward to try and hear herself in it. The volume has 2 settings, "quiet" and "loud" but to be honest we have had it so long it just stays on loud as the "quiet" setting makes no noise! I am actually surprised at how long it has lasted as we haven't changed the batteries at all in almost 18 months! It requires screwing to put new batteries in which is much safer as no chance of litlte ones opening it up and playing with them, and I believe it takes 4 AA batteries. Overall I really like this toy as not only is it educational but it's musical and engaging and it is one of my daughter's favourites. She goes from time to time forgetting about it, but always comes back to it. It was an amazing gift, and she has definitely got lots more play with it yet!
My son received the VTech Sing and Discover Piano as a Christmas gift when he was only 3 months old, the toy is reccomended for 6 months + so he was too young to play with it at the time. He first started properly taking an interest in it when he was about 5 months old and I found that the Lights & Music would nearly always grab his attention. As he still couldn't sit unaided, I would place him in his Bumbo chair which has a tray on the front and put the piano on the tray for him to play with in front of him. This toy has a Brightly coloured Musical Keyboard with chunky keys which suit even the smallest of fingers. The toy doesn't just play music as I expected it would since it is a Piano, it also teaches colours, animals and instruments. There is a Notebooke with pages above the Piano's keyboard which your baby can turn, and each different page will change the mode of the Piano. For example, if it is on the Numbers page it will sing different numbers when the keys are pressed and if it is on the Nursery rhymes page it will sing the different Nursery Rhymes etc. The Nursery Rhymes that the Piano plays are; Row Row Row Your Boat Three Little Kittens Frere Jacques Pop Goes The Weasel Ring-a-Ring a Rosies Along with other musical tunes! If the piano isn't being played with, it reminds you it is still being switched on by shouting things like "Come and Play with us!" and "Jam with the Band!". There is also a continuous faint beating noise that sounds even when the toy isn't being played with, this is handy in one way as it reminds you the toy is still switched on so that you can turn it off and not waste the batteries, but at the same time it is also a really annoying noise for the parent! There is a circular "Drum" button at the side of the Piano which makes a Drum beat noise when pressed, then theres a Blue dog "conductor" at the side which makes noises when jiggled. Finally there is a little microphone which is attached to the piano with a small lead which I noticed has been made the perfect length to be safe for your baby. The toy encourages your baby to sing by saying "Sing into the Microphone!" and the microphone really works too, but not too loud! There are 2 volume options depending on how loud you want it, but to be honest even on the quietest setting it is still quite loud! Once again I think VTech have made a great little toys hear that it both educational and greatly entertaining for babies. It is easy to clean too and it can just be wiped down, ours it still shiny as it was new. It requires 4 x AA Batteries which are included when you first buy the toy, they seem to be lasting us a while too. I think this is a toy my son will be playing with for a while and it is certainly one that I am happy for him to play with considering the educational value and brain development it encourages. The VTech sing and Discover Piano is widely available in most Toy stores for £19.99 and it is well worth the price tag.
The Sing and Discover Piano is one of your typical V-tech electronic baby toys; made out of brittle looking (yet actually quite sturdy) brightly coloured plastic, and with various interactive bells and whistles, intended to engage a 12 to 18 month old's attention. The piano takes the form of a small piano keyboard with attached music stand - all highly stylized. There piano has only five, chunky keys, each a different jolly colour, and with a cartoon, musical-instrument-playing creature drawn on it. Above this are another set of five pressable buttons shaped like musical notes. These are made out of translucent plastic so that lights can shine through them when they are pressed, and each plays a different flowing, electronic tune / song with words whenever it's depressed. The 'music' on the music stand part is a ring-binder containing a four-page, brightly coloured, plastic picture book. The first two pages are 'shapes, ' the next two 'animals' and the last one 'nursery' and the whole thing is set up so that depending on which set of pages you've turned to, the piano makes different noises, appropriate to the content displayed (it says 'circle' and 'square' and so on when you've turned to the 'shapes' pages, etc.). There's also the familiar V-tech blue 'Puppy' character as a fixed but swivelling toy attached to the right hand side of the keyboard (he's got a conductor's baton and is presumably directing the V-tech orchestra). Puppy swivels around on his base like a computer joystick and when you move him about, he makes a glissando type noise and a barking sound come from the keyboard. On the left, a bright, blue and yellow toy microphone (it clips into a stand there when it's not in use) connected by a short length of plastic-coated wire, and another giant round plastic button to press on. When you speak into the microphone, the sound comes out slightly amplified (sort of) via the slots at the other side of the of the piano keys. Appropriately enough, the sound quality from the mike seems to be best when a baby's got the handset actually in its mouth and is babbling 'ha-HA' or some such into it; it doesn't seem to work so well for adult speech, for example. There are two volume switches, quieter and louder that you can use to adjust the volume of the piano. The on switch also switches it between 'modes' - one to the right, and one to the left, with the 'off' position in the middle, which I find not very user friendly, though this is a very minor point. As with all V-tech toys, the batteries at the back have a screw-on cover for safety's sake. Happily it comes with the batteries already installed. Though I'm not sure why most of the entire back panel of the toy is covered with black plastic; that looks a bit grim, and as V-tech toys are usually so carefully designed to be bright and jolly looking. The whole play panel type arrangement is just over a foot long, and about a foot high, so it's not horribly massive (unlike, say the detachable front panel from the V-tech baby walker that we've also got, which is about the size of one half of a broadsheet newspaper). We got the piano from Argos for £20 for the baby's Christmas, and he plays on it several times a day. So we're very happy with it.
The VTech Sing and Discover Piano is definately one of the best toys I've bought for my son and he loves the music and interacting. I love it and if he wasn't playing with it I'd be half tempted to give it a go myself. I managed to pick it up for about £20 which was well worth it in my opinion. He is now 2 years old and I can see him playing it for a while yet. It has plenty of stuff to play with which is a great thing and keeps kids interested for long periods. There are five brightly coloured piano keys in red, orange, yellow, green and blue, each with different animal pictures on them, and when each one is pressed you can listen to the tunes and see the flashing lights. On the right hand side of the keyboard is a blue puppy dog which acts as a joystick to play with and mine and also my son's favourite part is on the left which is a microphone. In regards to the microphone my son loves this as he can pick it up and hear his own voice echoed and louder when he speaks into it. He can also sing along to the music at the same time as pressing the piano keys. There are also music sheets that are very easy to turn and make noises when you turn them. This helps with your child learning how to turn pages like in a book. He learns from the different colours and shapes and also the noises that come from him pressing different keys. Add this to the lights that engage him and keep him occupied and you have a great toy. I would highly recommend this to anyone as it's not that expensive and will keep your child occupied for hours as he plays with all the different features.
Okay so most battery operated toys these days tend to be loud, flashy and repetitive; however this version has all of the above but with a bit more variety than most. There are two main modes, one based around music and rhyme the other is focussed around learning colours and numbers. There is an illustrated notebook with several pages that prompt several new songs and sounds and work in conjunction with the note shaped buttons underneath in addition to a piano keyboard. The buttons do different things depending on the mode or page that's shown in the book which makes the babies experience it a bit more exciting. My daughter is just four months but has already having great fun pressing the buttons and wriggling to the musical tunes. I paid a little more for this in Boots, but I've seen it on Amazon for just under £13 which in my opinion is great value for money. I've bought quite a few toys from the vetch range as they are sturdy and seem to last. This particular toy seems to serve its purpose for being educational and it certainly interests my baby with its bright colours and lights. Finally as a bonus it has two volume settings meaning you can put it on low if the repetition gets too much!
I bought this piano for my daughter's first Christmas in 2007. It cost £20 from Boots and was in the 3 for 2 deal. It's the same price and in the same deal this year, and available from a wide variety of other stockists; Early Learning Centre, Argos and Amazon being some of them. At the time of buying I was wandering around the store with my then five month old daughter who was not in a happy mood. I took her to the toy section to distract her and plonked this piano on her knee, she looked rather startled, but interested, and began to frown and poke at it. The unhappy noise stopped and was replaced by an electronic one which meant I was able to do a bit of shopping in relative peace. At that time anything that could stop my daughter crying for more than thirty seconds seemed miraculous and I decided that this could be a Christmas present for that year, (even though she'd seen it, and sure enough when Christmas Day came it was still a surprise!). The recommended age for this is from 6 to 30 months. My daughter is now coming up to two and a half and still enjoys playing with it, so it has had plenty of use and, despite being occasionally rather annoying, was a good buy. There is quite a lot to it so unless you're especially interested you might want to skip to the pros and cons paragraph near the end where I sum it up. When you switch it on a chirpy little voice shouts out 'It's Showtime!', and launches into a song, (to the tune of 'Skip to my Lou'), which implores you to; "come play with your animal friends, the fun and music never ends, play the piano and sing too, there's so much for us to do", then yells "Come and Play with us!" Oh yes, I know it all off by heart. My husband has been known to switch it off in annoyance and put a ban on it, but I can let the noise go over my head. I've noticed that Mums seem to be able to manage this kind of feat much better than Dads, at least that's true of my acquaintance! There is, importantly, a volume button, so it can be on loud or extra loud. Why anyone would choose to have it on the higher setting is beyond me, although now my daughter can switch it to this, she does so. The quieter setting is definitely loud enough. It took a while for my little one to get to grips with the on/off, modes setting and volume buttons as they are small and quite stiff for a young child, (I think it was better when I had full control of them). The piano has five broad colourful keys and there is a fat blue and white drum pad at the left hand side. The drum pad doesn't seem to vary much as far as I can tell, after saying 'kick to the beat', it plays three different percussion beats on three pressings, but it is the easiest button for very little hands to press. There is,(was), a microphone attached to this side. On the right hand side there is a little round speaker and a blue plastic puppy,(the composer). At six months old this was the bit my daughter favoured. Obviously that puppy looks really juicy to a little teething one, and, if you push it, it barks! Holding and moving the puppy can also make the music speed up or slow down. Above the keys there are five light up buttons shaped like musical notes, these light up to the music and can be quite manic. Above them is a little book with three scenes entitled - 'shapes', 'animals' and 'nursery'. As you turn a page there is a musical sound and a phrase such as, 'Jam With the Band!', and the button and key responses change. The pages are strong and despite them being a bit bent, I can vouch for the fact that they are made of durable material. Each piano key and light up button is associated with an animal. There is a cat on the red key, a monkey on the orange, a pig, a bird and an elephant. They each play their own musical instrument and are used help to illustrate various things on the pages, eg on one page the cat is reading a book which, we are told, is shaped like a square. There are two modes of play; music and learning and there are three sections to each, denoted by which page of the book is open. It's a bit difficult to remember what does what at first, I remember my daughter wanting to hear a particular song one day and it took me aeons to work out how to find it. Music Mode When in music mode, it doesn't matter which page of the book you are on, pressing the piano keys on their own will always sound a note enabling the user to make up tunes. If you press a key when a tune is playing it will stop and let you 'pretend play' it yourself, one note at a time, but if you stop, it will return to playing normally. This means the player can give the impression of actually playing the tune themselves, if they/you should find them/yourself so inclined, (Okay I admit I have on the odd occasion been seen pretending to play one of the tunes while my daughter tries to wrestle the piano from my grip). Pressing the buttons will result in tunes being played, two to each button on some pages, or songs being sung. You can make the animals miaow/grunt/tweet etc to different melodies by pressing the keys or buttons when a tune is underway. One of the things I originally found a bit frustrating was that once a tune was underway it continued to the end, there's no cancel button. However -useful tip - I have discovered that in effect the red button on the microphone stand acts as a cancel button; whenever it's pressed a voice says, 'use the microphone to sing along!', but it can just be pressed to stop a tune and then quickly overridden by another button. All of the tunes are well known, some very obvious ones such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Hickory Dickory Dock, others annoying in that you know the tune but can't put a name to it, (unless you're a musical know-all). There is a melody list in the instruction booklet but I don't think everything is actually covered on it. Irrelevant aside - There is one well known classical tune that I have tried to find out the name of without success. In fact, as it is on the same button as Hickory Dickory Dock which my daughter likes a lot, I made up some lyrics to it to keep her happy and I wonder if anyone can recognise it by the rhythm? I've tried to make the punctuation do some of the work, imagine it sung to a fast high pitched piano tune; "Now the mouse is running round the house, now the mouse is running round the house, now the mouse is running round the house, little mouse is running round the house. Running round the house. Running round the house. Now the little mouse is running all around the house. Now - the- li-ttle mouse is running all aro-oo-uuund the house". I know it's ever so slightly a long shot, but does anyone have any idea what it is? Learning Mode In learning mode the keys will teach colours by saying the colour of the key that is being pressed. Shape names are taught on the shapes page, ("The sail on the boat is shaped like a triangle"), and instrument sounds are also taught - eg the words, 'the bird is playing the violin', followed by a bit of violin playing. Then there are animal noises to be learned too, "miaow like the cat, miaow, miaow", and so on. Various other noises come into play and new words may be learned as the animals undertake simple activities like the cat fishing in the pond. Songs are played in learning mode too, the five songs on the 'Nursery' page are sung in both modes. The Microphone There is a microphone which allows your child's, (or your own), voice to come out of the speaker if they sing along. The one on our toy didn't last long. There were a couple of problems with it. The first, which is the same for all of them, was that the lead was a bit short. I appreciate that this is probably for health and safety reasons, no one wants to see their child strangled by a toy, however, it means sitting uncomfortably close to the piano to sing into it as well as encouraging inadvertent rough handling. We soon had a problem with a loose connection, (probably caused by a good yank), which meant that the output was crackly and sometimes just touching the microphone made the whole thing crackle annoyingly. My husband 'fixed' it temporarily by shortening the lead even further, but it soon packed in altogether so we removed it. Automatic Power Down - If the piano is left untouched but switched on it will continue to try and attract your attention by shouting 'come and play with us' and various other musical entreaties, until after a while, (the booklet says 30 seconds but I'm certain it's a lot lot longer), it says 'bye bye', and shuts up. If you have any other Vtech toys you will recognise the voice as it seems to be the same one on all the Vtech toys I've heard. It takes 3 AA batteries. For some reason in the instruction booklet Vtech state in big letters that they do not recommend the use of rechargeable batteries. Having only just noticed this all I can say is that I have been using rechargeable batteries in it for the last two years without any noticeable ill effects. They've been changed no more than a handful of times over this period and my daughter does play with it a fair bit. Having said this, bear in mind that she doesn't have lots of toys, because for various reasons, I don't think it's good for children to have too many. Fun for Fun's Sake On the Vtech website this is sold as an educational toy and much is made of the 'developmental benefits'. I'm a bit fed up of hearing this sort of thing on children's toys. As a rule I'm not a fan of noisy plastic toys. I think plain old wooden/soft non electrical items are often a lot better, as the child has to use their own imagination instead of having everything done for them. I suspect many/all the claims these kind of toys make are really just so much claptrap. Children learn more from being with their families and interacting with real people than with lumps of plastic, no matter how bright they flash or how many different noises they make. 'Encourages auditory stimulation' is one of the terms used about this toy on the Vtech website. I mean, come on, 'auditory stimulation?' isn't that what happens every time you hear a noise?! Children learn every minute from every thing around them. Just let it be fun. To sum up the pros and cons: There are plenty of tunes and songs which little ones like and other fun features like animal noises. The chunky keys are good for little fingers to get to grips with and all those sounds and flashing colours make it a good distraction for crying babies. It could possibly encourage further interest in music. There may be something in the 'developmental benefits' such as language development, certainly there are close links between music and language so who knows, it might well help with speech. It's not too pricey. Apart from the microphone it seems quite hardy, ours has certainly taken a bit of a bashing and survived well. It teaches shapes and colours in learning mode or can be played simply as a piano in music mode. It can seem a bit complicated and difficult to work out. I think it could be over stimulating for a baby, especially in combination with other things going on such as more toys. The noise can be repetitive and irritating. The microphone seems fragile, ours didn't last long. I've seen my daughter progress from being barely able to press the keys, through bouncing happily to the tunes although not knowing how she's made them happen, to eventually gaining some kind of mastery over it. She now likes to play little tunes of her own composing and understands what will happen with different buttons that she presses. She knows how to get it to play Hickory Dickory Dock and other favourites. She seems to prefer the music mode over the learning mode, although she likes both. Although I wouldn't rush out to buy more of this type of toy, I do think my daughter has had good use from this one and I'm pleased that it still works well enough to be passed on for another child to have fun with. I've knocked off a couple of stars for the faulty microphone and the irritation factor, but if I could I would actually give this 3.5 out of 5 stars.
We bought this toy for my first baby girl two years ago, and she used it from about six months old, and still likes to have it out to play with now. The keys are big and easy to play with using tiny hands. They all make musical sounds and make different sounds depending on whether you select a speak function or just music. The pages turn over at the top, and this can be easliy achieved by a baby who is more than about eight months. They also make sounds when they turn, and help you to select a different function for the light up keys beneath the keys. There is a beat box pad and a microphone attached to this toy, which lead me to my only criticism of the piano. Sadly, the microphone broke after about six months and it seems that the wire is faulty (and this is not the first toy of mine that this has happened to). Other than that, this toy is a really good buy for christmas or birthdays, as the price can sometimes be quite steep due to its v-tech brand name
This is easily the best toy I own and has been since my son was 3 months - now 8. It is a versitile toy with lots going on - at 3 months my son loved to watch the colours flash and listen to the tunes, then he loved grabbing the puppy and bashing the keys with his hands and now we have pregressed to hitting the keys with the microphone like a hammer. The best thing though is that it will be a toy to grow up with as there is so much learning still to be done once they can understand colours, numbers and shapes - as a musician myself i think the concept of the puppy playing the music faster and slower is great. The pages also make a noise when you turn them and this also helps little fingers learn how to turn pages just like a book. I would recommend this toy to everyone as it has amused my son endlessly and made him smile everyday!