Archive | November, 2010

A Few of Our Favorite Toys: 1-Year-Olds

3 Nov

I welcome November with open arms. Even though it was 90 degrees here today in Southern California, I’ve got Christmas on the brain. I’m doing my best to complete my holiday shopping and crafting this month, leaving plenty of time for relaxing and celebrating in December while simultaneously obsessively cleaning, making freezer meals and generally nesting for the new baby.

One thing I have focused on in earnest these last few weeks is a wish list for our daughter, who turns 3 just a few days before Christmas. I’ve made her a flannel board and felt doll set and a diaper bag for her baby doll, and I found a super creative mom on Etsy who upcycles baby clothes into doll clothes. Even though I don’t have much left to buy, researching our options consumes me at times. I hate making purchases we end up regretting – you know, the toys that are ignored, or that break within a week, or make so much noise we end up hiding them on top of the fridge.

With that, I thought this might be a nice time to share some of our favorite toys over the last three years. This list is by no means exhaustive; it’s just a sample of some of the gifts Kaitlyn has received that have been well-loved in our home.

For now, let’s look at some of our favorites from age 1:
Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Fun With Friends Music Table
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B0015KOOHO
This table is noisy, but it’s also irresistible to the little ones. It eventually (after many, many, MANY hours of use) went into the closet for storage, but we’ve held onto it for the next baby and know he’ll enjoy it as much as Kaitlyn did. The legs are removable so they can use it sitting or standing. I recommend this to anyone looking for the perfect gift for baby’s first Christmas – especially if the grandparents are looking for suggestions. Ages 6 months and up.

Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics Stroll-Along Walker
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B0015KVXW8
This is a toy that has really stood the test of time. We bought this for Kaitlyn’s first Christmas and at nearly 3 years old, she still plays with it daily. In fact, right now her favorite bunny rabbit is sitting inside, and her playing cards are stored in the back tray. Which is saying something considering this stroller is ages 9 months and up – and she’s the size of your average 4-year-old. We’ve got a new doll stroller on her wish list for this year, one with a bit more growing room, but I’ll be a little sad to see this one go.

Fisher-Price Little People Happy Sounds Home (and other Little People sets)
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B001W09LO8
Little People hold a special place in my heart. My sister and I (and my best friend and I) played for hours and hours with our People growing up, and luckily my parents held on to most of the collection (which was extensive). Now Kaitlyn plays with it when visiting Grandma and Grandpa. She received the Busy Day Home (no longer available) for her first birthday along with a Noah’s Ark set, and both are still “in play” (and probably will still be by the time her baby brother is old enough to join in).

Little Tikes Push and Ride Doll Walker
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B00005850G http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B00005850H
We found one of these on Craigslist for $4. Granted, it had a cracked handle and always swerved to the right… but Kaitlyn still got quite a bit of use out of it. The recommended age range is 9 months and up. This is a nice option for both learning to walk and scooting around (and, if you’ve got a curious kid, eventually they’ll try to stand on it to reach things. But then, what won’t they stand on to try to reach things?).

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Car
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&nou=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=domesticatedm-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&md=10FE9736YVPPT7A0FBG2&asins=B001NQHN7S
This one is sort of cheating, because although the age range is 18 months and up, we didn’t buy it for our daughter until her second birthday. But it was a big hit and still is, nearly a year later. Every child who comes to play at our house gets in the car at least once, and usually some negotiating has to be done to take turns. We kept it indoors for most of the year, but recently let it venture out back so I could reclaim some living-room space. Kaitlyn’s preschool has several of these cars for outside play and they are constantly in use. If you see one on sale, snatch it up. I sent my husband to multiple stores last year to try to find the best deal; they seem to be in high demand over the holidays.

Coming soon! A Few of Our Favorite Toys: 2-Year-Olds…

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