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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bringing zen to the playroom

zenblocksWhile searching for a gift for a certain hard-to-buy-for someone, I came across zenblocks and was immediately charmed. The sets of six small irregular blocks (each one is unique) are hand-fashioned in Idaho from sustainable wood sources and finished with natural oils. Pretty enough to leave out on display, they can be used as a stacking game or a solitary stress reliever. Finding the balancing points takes enough patient focus that whatever else is on your mind fades away.

Perhaps my favorite thing about zenblocks is that children can enjoy them just as much as adults. Whether being banged about by babies, piled by toddlers, stacked in towers by older kids, or rolled in the palm by reflective adults, they are as at home in the playroom as on the office desk. No gimmicks, no electronics--just simple, beautiful objects that invite you to touch and play.

$23-26 at zenblocks

GIVEAWAY! We have a set of yet-to-be-released cherry zenblocks to give away to one lucky reader! Thanks to everyone who entered--the contest is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Danielle L!

227 contest entries:

Pam July 21, 2009 at 5:24 AM  

These are so awesome! They're gorgeous and would look fabulous just sitting on a shelf in our living room but would be so much fun for my husband and I to play with with our 3 year old who would adore them. He loves to stack and build things.

melacan at hotmail dot com

Christy Lee July 21, 2009 at 7:21 AM  

These are so pretty, I would love to have a set for my living room. I don't know who would like them more, me, my son or my husband. Thank you for the great giveaway!


Aisling July 21, 2009 at 7:22 AM  

I'm a Type-A personality looking forward to retirement very soon. I have lots of things planned, one of which is learning to unwind. These blocks would be fun and relaxing as well as just being really good looking.

Sharon July 21, 2009 at 9:13 AM  

I think these are so pretty they could just be a piece of art sitting on a shelf but in my house, I think my 8 year old would love them!

valerie2350 July 21, 2009 at 11:35 AM  

these look great - I can see leaving them out and having people pick them up to play with them :)

Anonymous,  July 21, 2009 at 12:09 PM  

I think I'd keep moving them around and hide them from BF or he'd be ploaying with them all day

swprlady atgmail dotcom

Kara July 21, 2009 at 12:27 PM  

I can see why they call them zen blocks, I think any age would want to try to play with these amazing little blocks. I have 4 kids and this would be a great game for them. Its something they are allowed to play with and looks good.:) It suits children from all ages really and would look awesome just hanging on the toy shelf or even book shelf. At least they are they toy that can be functional and mod at the same time. Super cool giveaway . Thanks

Kara July 21, 2009 at 12:28 PM  

I have your button on my sidebar as well thanks.

Kara July 21, 2009 at 12:30 PM  

I follow on twitter as well --evyready and tweeted today

cherdon July 21, 2009 at 12:52 PM  

Who wouldn't want the chance to own these yet to be released cherry zenblocks??? I would give them to my daughter so she could display them on her "shelf of keepsakes". This would be a great conversation piece and a something for all to play with. Thanks for this unique giveaway.

rebekah arnold July 21, 2009 at 1:03 PM  


rebekah arnold July 21, 2009 at 1:07 PM  

i follow on twitter and heres my tweet
tennrose you have to check this out zenblocks giveaway

Annie1 July 21, 2009 at 1:13 PM  

The blocks are awesome!

little sculptures to create larger sculptures

(in Canada)

Annie1 July 21, 2009 at 1:14 PM  

Follow you on Twitter


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Annie1 July 21, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

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riley July 21, 2009 at 1:22 PM  

These are neat! I love toys, activities that are pleasant to look at. I think this would be great for my son who loves to build. And it looks like a great way for mom to unwind after the kids are asleep!

mverno July 21, 2009 at 1:48 PM  

the grandchildren would like these for playing with

spitfyr323 July 21, 2009 at 2:38 PM  

Cherry wood is my favorite - in fact, my kitchen is done in cherry wood. I think I'd leave them on the island there - they'd be a fun decoration!

spitfyr323 at hotmail dot com

MJ July 21, 2009 at 2:50 PM  

I teach kindergarten. They would be awesome in my classroom!!!


Mayhem July 21, 2009 at 5:02 PM  

Well, they're just pretty to look at... But they would be a great way for my kids to experiment with some physics concepts.

Elsie,  July 21, 2009 at 5:20 PM  

Your drawing date is my wedding anniversary, 26 years of a blessed marriage...
and I have a wonderful son in college.

Those are not reasons for the zen blocks, lol, just the facts!

I'd love these in my home...welcome, Zen blocks, I have a serene place for you!

CarrieAnn13 July 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM  

These are great. They would look wonderful displayed on our coffee table and everyone - including my toddler could use and enjoy them without any worries of breakage or safety. Wow!

Staci July 21, 2009 at 6:08 PM  

These are beautiful! I'd love to add them to our coffee table as decoration and as a way to entertain my little one.

Mary A July 21, 2009 at 6:14 PM  

These are so beautiful. My son would love to stack them. Thanks for the giveaway.

Annette D July 21, 2009 at 6:16 PM  

These blocks are beautiful! My teenage son would love these. He took a sculpture class this year in school, so he is constantly creating.
This would be great because he could create new designs over and over again.

Wehaf July 21, 2009 at 6:52 PM  

Those are beautiful! I think we would keep them out on our coffee table with our Kapla blocks.

urchiken at gmail dot com

Tonya July 21, 2009 at 7:31 PM  

I would keep them in my office to decompress when I am totally stressed and give my kids something to do when they visit.

Dayna July 21, 2009 at 7:45 PM  

Oh my goodness, my two year old son would have hours of fun with these zenblocks! He is constantly getting into the pantry getting out all of the cans and stacking them. So not only would they be great for him but also convenient for me!

Lisa July 21, 2009 at 7:53 PM  

Love these! Would love to have a set on my desk or on our coffee table. My kiddos would adore these as well. Thanks for the giveaway.

Anonymous,  July 21, 2009 at 7:58 PM  

I am a social worker and would love to have these in my office for my patients as another way to teach them to relax, to meditate and to re-focus. Love them!

CeciRacine at gmail dot com

NGS July 21, 2009 at 8:02 PM  

MY SIL has two preemie babies in the hospital right now. I bet she could use them for stress relief and then the babies could use them for pounding together when they get older!! Positive thinking!!

Creative Mom July 21, 2009 at 8:23 PM  

In my house we would use them and stack them straight or make an arch out of them. When we're done place them on a shelf and display them. I know my son would love these and my husband and I would have fun with them also.

Aleda July 21, 2009 at 8:36 PM  

I'm a graduate student and I'm *always* looking for things to fiddle with while I'm reading articles or thinking. These blocks would be perfect!

artmarcia July 21, 2009 at 9:29 PM  

These are beautiful! I want to win them for my grandsin, so he will learn to appreciate great design at an early age.

Raine Hicks Wheeler July 21, 2009 at 9:59 PM  

I'm a school teacher (I teach elementary music) and I could really use a set of these to calm down with after a long day at school or better yet...on my desk at school to calm down after that "especially difficult" class and/or child and/or grown-up (They tend to be the most frustrating!)! Also, they are so pretty - they would look lovely sitting on my table. I especially like the walnut ones.
lorrainehickswheeler at gmail dot com

Madeline July 21, 2009 at 10:29 PM  

They would go straight to my kid who would be absolutely in love with them. Stacking is his new "thing".

Bella July 21, 2009 at 11:17 PM  

They would be going right next to my bed. I'm always super stressed and have problems sleeping some nights so I would for sure have them in close proximity!


Bella July 21, 2009 at 11:18 PM  

I subscribe to your site via my RSS yahoo reader!


susan July 21, 2009 at 11:24 PM  

This would be perfect for our table in the living room ~ definitely a piece to talk about!

Kelly July 22, 2009 at 5:33 AM  

These would be a great diversion for my husband, who has a little bit of a Wikipedia addiction! And the baby would love them, too.

Lauren July 22, 2009 at 5:39 AM  

I would display these in the living room so I could use them to unwind or fight boredom and anyone who came over could play with them too :)

free indeed July 22, 2009 at 6:02 AM  

This would be great to have around when the grandkids come to visit...something for them to play with and when they leave, I can stack them and leave them for a wonderful display putting away for the next visitors to come....all year use!

Anonymous,  July 22, 2009 at 7:03 AM  

They would be used in my home as a stress reducer after a hard day at the office.

Sandra July 22, 2009 at 7:10 AM  

My daughter would love to stack and play with these blocks. When she finally relinquishes them, I'd use them to de-stress.

Anonymous,  July 22, 2009 at 7:23 AM  

I'd probably use them just to play with-I love puzzle-type things. I also love the colour of the wood so'd they be displayed when I wasn't playing with them!

Randominities July 22, 2009 at 7:28 AM  

I will put them as an arch or a small stone henge in my zen sand garden. Thanks so much for this contest!

tarahsfoodreviews July 22, 2009 at 9:57 AM  

It would be pretty on display and great to use to keep my hands busy when I'm stressed out.


Amanda Daybyday July 22, 2009 at 10:49 AM  

I love these! I don't get excited about many building blocks...but I think these would get a lot of use in my family...from my 2 year old to my husband.

Erin July 22, 2009 at 10:56 AM  

I love that they're functional, yet they also provide beauty - a piece of art that we can change and manipulate. My husband, my daughter, and I would all enjoy playing with these. Thanks!

Joannie,  July 22, 2009 at 2:18 PM  

These are amazing and completely new to me. I would use them in my "yoga room" as I meditate!

Trish July 22, 2009 at 3:32 PM  

These are probably THE coolest things I have seen in a while. I am a stressed out freak and these would be on the coffee table, so I can "play" with them as needed ;)


Linda July 22, 2009 at 5:20 PM  

I would probably put them by my computer since I have been spending a lot of time here lately.


julis55 July 22, 2009 at 6:56 PM  

these look great - I can see leaving them out and having people pick them up to play with them :)

Shelly July 22, 2009 at 9:05 PM  

i collect cherry wood sculptures and items and this would be a great addition

andrus.shelly at

Colengal July 22, 2009 at 9:09 PM  

these are soooo cool! I would use them in my home office as "un-stubling blocks."

They would be great for kicking in the creative process. July 22, 2009 at 9:36 PM  

My 8 year old cousin is a serious tower builder and block enthusiast. Give that kid a pile of stuff he can make into a tower, and he'll play for hours! I would love to have these at my house so he has something really fun to play with when he visits! July 22, 2009 at 9:39 PM  

I have your button on the sidebar of my blog!

Cabootique July 23, 2009 at 8:56 AM  

I would have them on my desk to calm me/inspire me when I'm stuck.


jennem July 23, 2009 at 11:23 AM  

We would keep these on our coffee table for everyone to play around with.
Jennifer, jennem22 at yahoo dot com

Smooshy July 23, 2009 at 12:26 PM  

i'd give these to my husband, it's just the kind of thing he likes to mess with!

Valerie,  July 23, 2009 at 1:01 PM  

They would be on display in the gameroom
simple and unique-perfect!
KawaiiNeko2008 at aol dot com

mogrill July 23, 2009 at 2:47 PM  

This would be fantastic!! Thanks for the chance.

Mia J. July 23, 2009 at 8:58 PM  

These are very cool. I think my daughyter would mostly like to build with them.

JaMean July 23, 2009 at 9:06 PM  

These would go on the counter in the kitchen (main room in my home) so that everyone coiuld play with them while waiting for whatever, talking on the phone, begging for food... :) Cool little gadgets!

Carapace July 24, 2009 at 4:21 AM  

I would use them for therapy. I've had major neurological problems for a few years, and I'm constantly trying to hang on to my remaining nervous system skills. I think balancing zen blocks sounds like great physical brain-training!


Kimberly July 24, 2009 at 6:05 AM  

These would look great arranged on my desk. I would love to have something like this to play around with when I get stressed. It's great that these are attractive and functional.

amanda July 24, 2009 at 10:01 AM  

I would use this in my home as a decoration in my living room. They are so charming!
oheeyore at hotmail dot com

OSUfanz July 24, 2009 at 12:57 PM  

my son loves simple things- he would really dig these!


OSUfanz July 24, 2009 at 12:59 PM  

I am a fan on Facebook!


Danielle L,  July 24, 2009 at 1:40 PM  

These are awesome! I would keep them on my coffee table and I am sure plenty of people woule play with them!

Danielle L,  July 24, 2009 at 1:40 PM  

I am following on twitter-Daniellelo

Danielle L,  July 24, 2009 at 1:41 PM  

I subscribed to your feed via email!

sweetsue July 24, 2009 at 10:02 PM  

I would give these away to my son who is going through a lot of stress right now.
smchester at gmail dot com

Swaddle Babies July 24, 2009 at 11:39 PM  

These would look great on my entry table, but I'm sure they wouldn't last long there! I imagine my family having a grand time playing with these blocks :)

Swaddle Babies July 24, 2009 at 11:43 PM  

Following on Twitter :)
Etsy and Twitter: SwaddleBabies

Swaddle Babies July 24, 2009 at 11:44 PM  

I'm a FB fan :)
Etsy, Twitter, FB: SwaddleBabies

Swaddle Babies July 24, 2009 at 11:44 PM  

I'm a FB fan :)
Etsy, Twitter, FB: SwaddleBabies

Abby July 25, 2009 at 5:34 PM  

This would actually be a great stress reliever for my husband at the end of the day at work

ajcmeyer at go dot com

Terra H. July 25, 2009 at 6:54 PM  

My son enjoys stacking things, so this would be great for him. It'd keep him busy for hours.

remarker/fcffollower July 25, 2009 at 8:48 PM  

I would use these myself - to relax when I sit too long in front of the computer :)

The Rozell Family July 26, 2009 at 1:52 PM  

these are super cool! I would love a set for our living room for our kids, guests and MYSELF to play with! these are beautiful!

bboyle July 26, 2009 at 4:28 PM  

These are really cool. I would give them to my father-in-law to use as a stress reliever.

Grace July 27, 2009 at 12:54 PM  

These are so cool. I think they would be used by 2 little girls to make bridges, mountains, and more. What a GREAT giveaway. Thanks.

gracescotkeith at hotmail dot com

Thao July 27, 2009 at 1:33 PM  

I could use this for stress relief as well as the kids using it for hand eye coordination. And all around banging blocks too!

member (dot) thao (at)

Thao July 27, 2009 at 1:36 PM  

Your button is here

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Anonymous,  July 27, 2009 at 1:54 PM  

Zenblocks would be used in attempting to make an object of art. Each person could have the floor for a 2 week period......then the next persons turn. These sound really nice.
gourdsrmylife at yahoo dot com

Anonymous,  July 27, 2009 at 1:55 PM  

I subscribe to your blog.
gourdsrmylife at yahoo dot com

The Dreamer July 27, 2009 at 7:45 PM  

These are so pretty! I'd put them front and center on our coffee table so it would be a conversation piece

addeviant006 at gmail dot com

jamielz July 27, 2009 at 8:21 PM  

I have a zen theme in my office at work and these would go there to keep with the peaceful setting.

Christina July 28, 2009 at 6:07 AM  

Christina - - I'd keep them in my living room and constantly change the design (which would de-stress me)!

selinda_mccumbers July 28, 2009 at 7:41 AM  

I would use them to have something for my hands while I was watching TV!


Jayfr July 28, 2009 at 9:46 AM  

These look nice. I'd keep them in the family room where we could interact with them instead of having the tv be the focus. They'd look good on the window seat...

Melissa B July 28, 2009 at 11:58 AM  

I would place my zenblocks on the coffee table as decoration (and the occasional fun activity for my guests). saidera1 at gmail dot com

paula h July 28, 2009 at 12:43 PM  

I would keep them in the living room for my kids to play with. They would love them plus they would look nice in the living room.


nightowl July 28, 2009 at 3:58 PM  

I would stack them as a centerpiece on my sofa table where I could see them. Then when I am stressed or just want to have a little break from everyday life, I would make something with them.

lace July 28, 2009 at 9:36 PM  

These would be used as the crowning gems on the soaring towers the girls make with their blocks.

Anonymous,  July 29, 2009 at 12:40 AM  

I have a brand new, entertainment center, and have been looking for something interesting to add to it, and these blocks are perfect for that. Also, I think they make geat conversation pieces.

chipper101 at

cpsnsamples July 29, 2009 at 5:13 AM  

neat sure every person who walked in my house would have to play with them.

cpsnsamples July 29, 2009 at 5:13 AM  

neat sure every person who walked in my house would have to play with them.

erma July 29, 2009 at 6:26 AM  

I would put them on a shelf with some candles.

pixie13 July 29, 2009 at 8:50 AM  

I have a fifteen year old & a three year old, they'd both love these. I doubt they'd be put up much, everyone would be playing with them all the time!

missrantsypants July 29, 2009 at 10:51 AM  

They are gorgeous to look at, but we would use them for the balancing game aspect. I think it would be great 'brain training'.

furygirl3132 July 29, 2009 at 11:16 AM  

These look really cool and would be pretty just sitting on top of the TV or on the bookshelf, but I'm sure my 6 year old would love playing with them and stacking and unstacking them. Thanks so much for such a wonderful giveaway!


furygirl3132 July 29, 2009 at 11:17 AM  

Subscribed to your RSS feed through Google Reader and email.


furygirl3132 July 29, 2009 at 11:28 AM  

Have your button on my blog here:


furygirl3132 July 29, 2009 at 11:28 AM  

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Anonymous,  July 29, 2009 at 12:14 PM  

giving a way,,,thanks,good luck all.
autumnrosen atyahoo dotcom

sweet_h2o July 29, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

These are lovely and fun! Perfect for my little daughter who has just discovered the joys of stacking things. Of course, they'd also look great here in my rather zen office too...

bellydgirl at yahoo dot com

sweet_h2o July 29, 2009 at 1:18 PM  

I am now following you on Twitter! Can't wait to see updates! My id on twitter is Smootiful

bellydgirl at yahoo dot com

sweet_h2o July 29, 2009 at 1:19 PM  

I became a fan on Facebook under Tracy Pace :-)

bellydgirl at yahoo dot com

Happi Shopr July 29, 2009 at 4:37 PM  

these would be lovely in a bowl on the shelf for each of us to use to wind down at the end of a stressful day. trinitygsd at yahoo dot com

kngmckellar July 29, 2009 at 5:52 PM  

I would put them on the coffee table for people to play with when they come! My kids would love to play with them also and me when I sit and watch tv.

Egare1 July 29, 2009 at 7:51 PM  

We'd each use these differently at our house! Hubby says he'd stack them and try and make them balance, I'd gaze at them and meditate, and I'm sure baby would throw them around!

Sarah Z July 29, 2009 at 8:08 PM  

I think my daughter and I would make designs out of them!
believedreamcourage (at)

Izzie July 29, 2009 at 9:18 PM  

I would learn to juggle the zen blocks, or at least, play with them,

chromiumman July 29, 2009 at 9:33 PM  

these are great, i think we'd just use them as conversation starters on the coffee table

Mollie G. July 29, 2009 at 10:35 PM  

If DAD gets ahold of them, it could be for sculptural opportunities OR for juggling practice! I really love that first-encounter graphic of the stack balanced precariously against each other...


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