How it all began...
Sacred Heart Toys was founded by Michael & Laurel MacKinnon in 2012, soon after the birth of their daughter, Amelia. When Amelia was baptized she received beautiful presents in celebration that will always be treasured, such as crucifixes, a "baby rosary" made of pink glass beads, a Mary and Jesus statue, etc... She even received an extra large wooden rosary made for young children. We were very grateful for all of the sweet thoughtfulness and generosity of our family and friends.
A few months later as Amelia grew we gave her the children's wooden rosary to hold and when she was around five months old she started chewing on the already sharp edged cross, splintering it and banging it about the house. (The wooden rosary for children is actually made for three years and up, but we were new parents and didn't think to read the packaging) As such, Grandmothers and Aunties were very concerned that Amelia would hurt herself. They questioned, "Isn't there a soft rosary for babies out there"?
Their concern prompted a little research on our behalf to find a rosary that was safe, plush, and made for infants and toddlers - a true Baby Rosary. Surprisingly, we couldn't find one...which seemed hard to believe. Well, one thing led to another and that is how Sacred Heart Toys began with the plush "My First Rosary".
As Amelia has grown she has inspired us to create a few more Faith teaching toys for babies and toddlers. For example, the My First Cross is a perfect alternative for her when she wants to touch the sacred objects on our family alter. She now has alternatives to hold, hug and kiss that introduces the Faith (her Faith) to her in a very natural way. We no longer have to worry about a sharp cross or a fragile statue as she has her own collection of "plush sacramentals". Even better yet all grandmothers and aunties are happy knowing Amelia is safe. Tip: If you have these toys blessed they will become real Sacramentals!
Coincidentally, this all began in 2012 during the Year Of Faith. And, it was during the month of October dedicated to the Holy Rosary that all this transpired. As such, we are grateful to Our Lady as we believe Mother Mary has guided and helped us with the endeavor of creating "Devotional toys that inspire a life of faith, prayer and devotion to her son, Jesus".
Our mission is to design toys that accomplish several goals:
- To develop new toy concepts with the intention of opening windows for children to learn the tenets of the Catholic Faith at an early age.
- To provide a platform (toys) by which parents can naturally talk about aspects of our Faith to their children.
- To evangelize all those who come in contact with the toys. They are a great conversation starter about the Faith! Hopefully they inspire even adults to "lift their hearts to heaven".
- To provide high quality, safe, non-toxic faith teaching toys for baby showers, infant baptisms, 1st birthdays or the "just because I love you" gift.
Having converted to Catholicism in 2010, Laurel & Michael have been deeply impacted by the richness of the Catholic faith. They are faithful to the teachings of the Magisterium They live in Boise, Idaho with their daughter Amelia and dog Linus. Thank you for letting us share our story with you! May God bless you!
In the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary,
Michael and Laurel MacKinnon