I’ve had a few people ask what gifts Maggie got over the holidays and her birthday and what she has really enjoyed so far, so I thought I would share!
I also don’t strictly buy “neutral” toys for her (I talked about this on stories recently) – some stuff I get is neutral coloured, but other stuff is not. This is because: 1) Maggie likes colourful toys; and 2) there is developmental value to playing with colourful toys – bright, contrasted toys are a sensory experience for babies.
You can read more about age appropriate toys (and the role colours continue to play for children as they grow) here.
So here is what we got and what M received over Christmas and her birthday:
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A Custom Name Puzzle (A Little Different From the Popular Ones Right Now!)
I had this puzzle made for Maggie by Lifebits. I think I talked about briefly before, but here is the photo as well. We chose our own animal – I just sent a photo of what I wanted it to look like (it’s a sheep, Maggie loves her sheep stuffy!) and ta-da! I love that I was able to support a local vendor purchasing this. It is an imperfect puzzle because it is handmade, but it works perfectly and Maggie enjoys the challenge of it.
They have tons of other educational wood toys you can see here.
When she outgrows it I will likely display it in her room or hang it up somehow!
Measuring Cups and a Bowl
Maggie loves measuring cups so I got her a new set (they’re squishy and they’re from Dollarama!) and I also got her a bowl because lately she has been really into “mixing” things with a spoon. She also likes making music with it.
The true reason I got her a metal bowl was because she is obsessed with the dog bowl and I thought having her “own dog bowl” might deter her from the other one (it did not work, but she still likes the bowl).
Kitchen utensils support imaginative play, as well as fine motor skills (and even more as baby grows).
This is not Maggie’s first piano – she actually had the Baby Einstein Kickin Tunes as an infant (the piano detaches from this and you can use it for some time after as well). We still use the other piano but to give her a different experience, we asked for this one on her birthday/Christmas wish list and it was purchased for us.
Maggie loves music – but I have to say with this piano she is mostly obsessed with the faux “sheet music” – which is ok since it is very heavy duty and cannot be ripped (or at least she hasn’t managed to do that yet). I may store this one for a few months and bring it back out as part of a later rotation, but I love it! I actually play with it with her – it is very interactive so is a good toy to “grow” with for a bit.
Maggie has been working on signs at daycare with quite a bit of success, so I got her (and I) this book so we can work on them at home too! I talked more about what she has learned so far in regards to signs in my 1 year update.
I buy Maggie clothes pretty regularly, but she always needs PJs. I feel like she grows out of them faster than anything else?! She also goes through them often and I hate having to do laundry more than 1x per week so I grabbed her a new set of fleece PJs for winter. No feet because she is walking now (she still wears some with feet but I prefer without because even the ones with grip I find aren’t as good for her on our floors).
I love Carters for PJs – they have simple designs and ZIPPERS (which I still prefer to buttons).
Soft Stacking Blocks (and she was gifted Mega Bloks!)
Both are great options for blocks – I know everyone is really into wooden blocks right now, but I honestly didn’t want to spend the $$ (really, my husband could make them as well so). Maggie is happy with both blocks – she likes the soft blocks because she can still put them in her mouth (and they make a squeaky noise – my dog on the other hand, is triggered by this!!). The Mega Bloks are great for building – she is still learning but it’s a good activity for my husband or I to do with her, and she likes all the colours. Mostly she likes pulling the blocks apart, vs. putting them together right now.
Maggie received this from one of her grandparents and we love it! It’s got so many activities in one place – definitely a bit of an investment, but a good gift to request (or invest in) because it has so many different things on it, it’s like several gifts combined in to one. I had been wanting to get her the activity beads for awhile, so the top has that and then all 4 sides have different “activities” too like doors than open and close with animal photos behind them; zig zag animal pieces; blocks that spin and flip!
It is a good side so if any of the activities match a toy you were looking at – consider this because it stores well and fits in a corner of our basement nicely for when she is down there.
I couldn’t find the exact one Maggie has, but we ended up getting her the Step2 play kitchen – mostly because of the price (it was on sale at Walmart before Christmas). I had originally planned to do an IKEA DIY hack, but time wasn’t on my side and we had to rush to find a kitchen for her.
This one came with utensils and pots and pans, so we opt’d for that and then I bought her a separate set of some fruits/veggies/etc by Melissa & Doug.
Does it fit my aesthetic for my living room? Not exactly, but she loves it and that is what matters most to me. Maybe I will have time to do the IKEA kitchen in future and I can replace it! Or maybe not, we shall see where the road takes us.
M received this Crayola Easy-Clean Finger-paint Set as a gift – it was so fun! I loved that there was no mess – we had previously done a DIY no-mess painting (with saran wrap and a canvas!) that was super fun but a little messy, so it was nice to have an option that is really mess free.
I’d recommend it more for kids a bit older than Maggie though – as she wasn’t super engaged. However, we did it a month ago and I feel now she would be more into it as she recently started to like colouring.
M’s favourites at daycare at the Little People toys by Fisher Price, and she luckily was gifted this farm set! It’s definitely one of her #1 favourites right now, alongside the play kitchen – she loves the bell and how interactive the parts are.
Such a simple toy and it’s only 10.99$ but I kid you not – my kid is obsessed! I knew she would like the concept of them because she loves her Yookidoo which I spoke about in our bath must haves post. Each bucket has different types/sizes of holes at the bottom so they “do” different things. I also love how easily they store because you can just stack them inside each other meaning they don’t take up a lot of space. I don’t know about you guys but I don’t have endless space for bath toys (or any toys for that matter) so easy storage is appreciated.
And a few more bath toys:
We were gifted a few other bath toys, all great! They are…
- Boon Pipes
- Munckin Fishin’ Bath Toy
- Munchkin 5 Pc Bath Crayon Set with Bath Letters & Numbers
- Yookidoo Fill N Spill – Set of 4 Cups (a smaller version of our other Yookidoo)
Wow I said a “small list” but between the gifts she received from others and ours it was quite long – I hope it gives people some ideas! However, I should mention that some of her favourite things remain “non-toys” like the simple measuring cups I got her. She also loves her utensils! So never feel pressured to buy your kids a ton of stuff – anything can make a good toy really!