Monday, 14 December 2015

{12 Days Of Parenting} Day 2: 'Toddler Christmas Gift Inspiration'

Thank you for hopping over from Suburban Mum and welcome to my post for the second day of #12DaysofParenting. We have many prizes to give away between now and Christmas eve. Full details and T&Cs can be found on the #12DaysofParenting website. 

Since becoming a parent, I have definitely started to learn a thing or two about toys. LO has quite a lot of toys in his collection, but there are some which he loves and plays with over and over again, and those which he plays with once or twice, and then loses interest. Each birthday and Christmas, I am learning more and more about what he enjoys playing with and what sustains his attention. So now, alongside testing out what he enjoys, I look for certain things in toys, and if they don't suit, we tend to avoid them. After all, we only have limited space and there's no point wasting money on toys only for them to spend the rest of their days in the back of a dusty cupboard...

With that in mind, I am looking for toys which are open ended and can be used in a variety of different ways, things which don't irritate everyone with their noises, things which don't take up heaps of space or which are awkward to store and toys which he will be able to use for years to come. Here are some of my top ideas for toddler gifts this Christmas... 
I've already purchased some of these, and I can't wait for LO to start playing with them!

EduShape Fish 'n Spell-  I found this recently in TKMaxx, although it can be purchased on Amazon too. I thought it'd make a great activity for bath time or for when we do water play activities. The magnetic fishing rods catch the letters, but the letters can also be used in other activities too, such as an ABC sort activity. 

Wooden Maze Puzzle- This is something I've already bought for LO. I found it in TKMaxx but it's by a company called Joueco. Although it's aimed at 12 months + it can be used in lots of different ways and used with other wooden puzzles to make a mixed puzzle sort activity. 

Melissa & Doug reusable sticker pad- Again, this is something I found in TKMaxx. We already have the animals reusable sticker pad which LO loves, and as he is hugely into vehicles, we thought he'd love this. 

Big City Carry Along City- Currently on offer for £16 in the Early Learning Centre, reduced from £40, this is a town map with a car ramp and shops attached. No flashing lights or sound effects so LO can decide what he does and how he moves the vehicles around the town. An added bonus is that this folds away neatly into a carry along storage box. 

Toy Cars- LO rarely leaves the house without a) a book or b) a toy car. He has loved playing with Mr F's old toy Matchbox cars, and these go perfectly with the carry along city. 

Convertible Vehicle Book- There are loads of these in TKMaxx at the moment and cost around £5.99. I have bought the Fire Engine book for LO. It is multi-use with a book to read, a road map to play with and you can even convert it into a vehicle to sit and play in. 

Melissa & Doug Shape Sorting Clock- I love the idea of this shape sorting clock from Melissa and Doug. It's definitely a toy with the longevity factor because at the moment, a toddler could use it for shape and colour matching and then later on it can be used to learn how to tell the time. 

Viga Number Colour Stacking Rings- You may be able to tell that we LOVE puzzles in our house! This one is great for counting and colour sorting and can be used with the other wooden puzzles in a game of puzzle sort. 

YIXIN Wooden Rainbow Matching Board- This is a great little wooden puzzle which can be used by itself or as part of a puzzle sort game. These will keep toddlers entertained for ages and help to develop so many different skills. 

Wooden Building Blocks- I keep meaning to get LO a set of building blocks as it's something he doesn't actually have. These are such a versatile toy and can be used in so many different ways, I think they'd be a great addition to his toy collection.

Mr Potato Head- I loved playing with Mr Potato head back in the 1990's and I'd love to get LO one. They can be used in lots of different ways and you can build up a collection of different characters. 

Disco Ball- LO loves having a 'disco' in the lounge before we take him for his bath. We put music on for him to dance and sing to and sometimes put the bubble machine on. The only thing we are missing is a funky disco ball light. 

So that's my little round up of my top toddler toys for Christmas this year. I hope it will give you a few ideas or some inspiration with your Christmas shopping! What do your little ones enjoy playing with? Are there any toys you find are great for keeping them occupied? I'd love to know!

Today's sponsor is Baby Bundle. For your chance to win a Hoppy or Patch please enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below. My code word is sick.

Head on over to Laura's blog My Thoughts on Things to check out her post for today and to gain further entries into the giveaway. 

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