Running from the Law: Chugga Chugga Chugga

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Chugga Chugga Chugga

Is there anything that toddler boys love more than trains?  Well, other than bugs, dirt, poop and throwing things?  Oh, and jumping off furniture.  And dogs.  And candy.  Ok, so trains are definitely probably in the top 10.  Right? Or is my toddler just extra crazy?  Don't answer that.

Anywhoo, Mac loves trains (and anything huge and insanely loud with wheels).  He especially loves Chuggington (Disney Jr. for the win).  Actually, he really just loves the Koko train on Chuggington. You know, the cute and zippy purple girl train with a heart of gold. He's got a major crush on Koko that little tramp.  He has a little Koko train that he sleeps with every night.  Not kidding.  As I've mentioned before, he doesn't really sit still long enough to watch much TV, but he does like the Chuggington episodes featuring Koko.  I think I've seen the "Can't Catch Koko" episode about 600 times.  And the one where she's waiting for the baby giraffe to be born and her light goes out.  He loves that one.  

So, when we got the opportunity to try out the new Chuggington train set - Chuggington StackTrack Brewster’s Big Build Adventure Playset - you better believe I was all over it!  Mac was SO excited to get this in the mail and kept asking whether Santa or Papa sent it. 
Because we've just completely given up on trying to have nice things or be grown-ups these days, we swapped out our living room coffee table for a train table.  Again, not kidding.  Yes, it's tacky and obnoxious, but if it keeps the toddler entertained for 5 minutes while I'm making dinner, it's a win in my book.  So we set up the trainset right in the middle of the room and let Mac have at it.  
The playset comes with an elevator, an escalator, a working mega crane, a trick bridge, a tunnel, and two engines. It has 4 levels of elevation and multiple layouts for extended play (so when he gets bored with one, we can switch it up).  With so many cool features, he didn't even mind that Koko wasn't included.  (Okay, so that's only partially true...he brought his Koko train down from his room, but she's too big to fit on the track so he has her in his pocket. Silly obsessed boy.) 
Needless to say, Mac loves it!  He's played with it every night since we set it up and it's kept his attention longer than most of his other toys.  He really likes the tunnel, turning the crank on the escalator, the elevator that moves the crane arm and racing the trains "really fast" down the track to the bottom.  (He also loves driving the trains off the side of the track, where they crash and burn on the table and everyone aboard dies a horrible death, but we'll just stick to the niceties here.)
Ryan had the whole thing set up in a few minutes and said it was really easy to assemble.  He set it up according to the instructions, but there are three other configurations that you can do as well.  And it's compatible with other Chuggington trainsets, so you can combine them if you want something more elaborate.

I'm pretty happy with the trainset.  I think it's very well-built and sturdy, which is important with a wild preschooler  I really like the fact that the tracks are interlocking and snap securely together and to the elevation stands.  They're sturdy, so they don't come apart with any little movement. We have another train set in the basement that requires constant adult maintenance because the toddler is not gentle with it and the tracks never stay put.  This one's already taken quite a beating and is fine.  Plus, they're like puzzle pieces that snap together, so Mac can do it himself, if they do come apart.
The only thing I'm not crazy about is the "trick" bridge, which collapses when you drive the train over it, so you can use the crane to fix it.  For most kids, this would probably be a really cool feature, but Mac's not really into the whole "fixing" aspect of it yet (he's more of a destroyer than a fixer), so it slows the trains down and he has to manually reattach the bridge by hand.  Not a huge deal, but I do wish there was a way to turn that off.  
This train set is based on the extended new Chuggington TV special airing on Disney Junior this fall, where Brewster (the blue train) rides up an elevator to operate a working mega crane and repair a broken track.  The episode helps your little one discover important lessons about safety, responsibility and teamwork.  We received the "Chuggineers Ready to Build" DVD, with this episode and a few others to watch while we played with the trainset.  Koko made a special appearance in the show, so Mac was happy. 
So, if you're looking for a fun birthday or Christmas gift for a toddler/preschooler who loves trains, definitely check out the Chuggington StackTrack.  You might even get this kind of awesome reaction!

Anyone else have a kid obsessed with trains?

Chuggington StackTrack Brewster’s Big Build Adventure Playset
All new to train play, this Chuggington set features a working escalator that takes your engines back to the top so you can send them speeding back down again and again. Or take Brewster for a ride on the elevator so he can get to the top to operate the giant crane and repair the broken track. There are so many ways to play. Brewster’s Big Build Adventure Set is based on the Chuggington tentpole episode airing this fall, so it’s sure to keep the excitement going as kids play out their favorite scenes from the show. This set comes with an elevator, an escalator, a working mega crane, a trick bridge, a tunnel, and two Die-Cast engines. It even features 4 levels of elevation and multiple layouts for extended play. Take train play to new heights with the Chuggington StackTrack system! SRP $49.99. Ages 3 years+. Available now at Toys R Us and Target.

Chuggineers Ready to Build DVD
The strongest and most dependable construction crew in Chuggington is ‘Ready To Build’ in the newest Chuggington DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment. A brand-new collection of five fast-paced adventures – including the extended new special slated to premiere on Disney Junior this fall, “Chuggineers Ready To Build” recently made tracks to retailers nationwide. In this special collection of hard-working adventures – including the “We are the Chuggineers” music video! – Brewster joins Chuggineers Zack, Fletch and Tyne to build tracks, bridges and tunnels, make repairs, haul heavy loads and more! Featuring new wagons and machines, including the massive yellow Mega Chug Crane, and new friends Payce, the tunnel runner from Tootington, and Cormac, the cheeky forklift engine, “Chuggineers Ready To Build” will help Wilson, Brewster, Koko and little trainees at home discover important lessons about safety, responsibility and teamwork. SRP $14.98. Available now on

**I received the Chuggington Playset and DVD free of charge for purposes of this review.  All opinions expressed are mine (and Mac's).


  1. OH wow this is awesome! Gonna have to look into this and ask Santa to bring it for my little boy! Thanks for sharing!

  2. OH MY GOSH! Girl, you are not alone. Mason LOVES Chuggington! And to be honest, I kinda like it too! Mason would DIE if he got this for Christmas! I love it. I actually found the VTech Go Go Smart Wheels train set at Costco a couple weeks ago and bought it for him for Christmas. We have some of the other ones and this would go perfectly. And the train moves on it's own! Extra bonus!

  3. Mac looks so cute playing with this- happiest boy! We may have to get this for Autumn because she LOVES trains! Who says girls can't like boys toys? haha. A train is definitely on her list but we weren't sure which to get, this is a top contender now!

  4. that train set looks awesome! as much as Callie likes trains she has yet to get into chuggington! But maybe the extended episode will help her out - I love when Disney Jr does those!

  5. Oh my gosh, this is amazing. I am not surprised that Mac LOVED it! He is such a cutie, by the way. ;) Have you decided what to get him for Christmas? I want to buy so much - this is the best age!!

  6. He is such a lil man, so cute. & that train set looks awesome, I wanna come play too! :)

    Mandie ~

  7. My daughter is a big fan of trains currently too. Her favorite thing to do is build one with our Duplo train set. This looks like a great playset for toddlers!

  8. Wow, looks like a super cute and fun set!

  9. I'm laughing at this whole post because you know I always say that our boys are so similar! The big difference here is that Reed is a Thomas guy all the way, but I think the little Chuggingtons are so cute. I actually just put together a train table last night to save for Christmas, even though I told myself I'd just do a small track with a tub of trains that can hide. I also left the hideous "city" scene in place without painting it grey like my mind wants to do because it's got a cement mixer on it. Who can cover a cement mixer from her boy?? So, I will be joining you in having an obnoxiously large train set in my living room, come December 25th. Cheers to that, mama!

  10. That looks like so much fun! Mac seems like he's really loving it :) I think Owen would just flip for that toy.

  11. We just put our coffee table in the basement because Jude keeps hitting his head on it when crawling. I can imagine within a year or two we will also have a train table in our living room, because why not! ;)

  12. He is in heaven!! We don't have kids but my husband was obsessed with trains with he was younger!

  13. WOAH! So much fun! Except for the whole collapsing bridge. I have a sneaky suspicion that would just completely piss Marcus off until I fixed it. Other than that, what an awesome train! And, we're totally those people with the train table in the living room too. :)

  14. This train set looks like a lot of fun! The perfect gift for the little ones in my life. Happy Thursday :)

  15. How fun! Avery loves Chugginton, I'll have to check into this!

  16. what a great set! Even Elyse went through a Koko stage, she ended up with two of them and had to have both of them for bedtime for a little while! What a great idea for a Christmas present...and while baby dolls are high on Elyse's list of priorities, she certainly wouldn't complain if a complete choo-choo set was under the tree!