Gift Guide: Babies + Young Toddlers

I was doing my annual November toy purge to make way for all the new Christmas stuff and as I went I jotted down some of our favorite and most-used toys.

If you have a baby or young toddler in your life and need a gift idea for the holidays, here are some of our favorites.

**And might I add, if you do have a baby or young toddler in your life (especially if it is your own child), take advantage of this time! Do not go gift crazy. They do not need a lot. As Sarah says, start as you mean to continue. We have always tried to keep it sustainable with gift giving, meaning, will we be able to continue giving this many gifts as we add children and as they age? Just a few things and they are so pleased.

Stacking train - We gave this to Eloise for Christmas when she was a little over a year old and both girls (3 and 5) still play with it. And of course now George loves it too.

Xylophone - We have an older version of this and it's a favorite for all ages. This is about as noisy of a toy as I allow.

Moover baby walker - A higher price point but something high-quality that can be used as a baby walker for the younger set and then a sibling-transporter (among other things) for older toddlers and children. We were given this by friends who just recently aged out of this and their oldest is 7. We also have the doll pram from this line (which also transforms into a sibling-transporter...whether or not you want it to) and these are the things that are on my "toys I will save for my grandchildren" list.

Bus play set + figurines - All three have loved this bus and it's great for all ages! The littlest ones love picking out the figurines and rolling the bus around and the older ones incorporate it into their imaginative play.

Rainbow stacker - Such a simple thing that's fun (George loves rolling the ball that sits on top), well-made, and nice to look at.

Other ideas for this set: practical things! We have had more than a few toddler birthdays and holidays where the "gift" is something practical that they need like a learning tower (Nick actually made ours with these plans)

or toddler chair. Both girls began sitting in these at the dinner table after they aged out of the high chair, and they're adjustable through adulthood. This was Mimi's first birthday gift, sorry.

If you're not as much of a stick in the mud and want something a little more gift-y but still more on the practical side, what about an Advent calendar?

You could also start a nativity collection for a little one and add pieces as they grow. It took me YEARS to find a nativity set I wanted to collect because my criteria were: 1) heirloom quality but also 2) durable enough for my kids to play with, and several years ago I decided on the Lotte Sievers-Hahn nativity. Because of the price point we've had to slowly add to this through the years, which makes it even more special. Each Christmas we give each child a new piece, and my parents have been doing the same.

And for little Georgie this year, who will be around 9 months old on Christmas, we're getting him:

a drum (which is probably a little too big for him right now but being the third child, his toys need to be able to be grown into)

and a rainbow stacking tunnel,

And I think my parents are getting him his first Fagus truck.

As he is our first boy, I am new to Fagus trucks but I love them and can see this being something we collect for him in the future, too.

I hope this was helpful, and I hope to be back soon with an installment of our favorite toys for the older set!

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