I think that I should be posting in toddlers instead of babies!
DS is turning 1 next week, and I have no ideas for birthday presents. His favorite toys are balls -- of which we already have many -- and whatever DD is playing with. My parents are getting him a walk-behind toy and a shape sorter.
i can't advocate enough for the 1 year-old birthday riding toy gift. dd got one and even though she wasn;t really even cruising and her feet didn;t really reach the ground that well she still "rode" on it. she also pushed it around the house as a push toy and just generally loved it. plus, it's one toy that will last at least a couple more years.
i went low key for the 1st bd. dd2 got a balloon. dd1 got the fisherprice barn for her 1st bd and now 10yrs later she still plays with it using her pollypocket dolls. dd2 just plays with the farmer.
A Rainbow People Mover: http://www.northstartoys.com/products/rainbow-people-mover
My review is on the page, but I'll repeat my story - I bought this for my son when he was a year old. When the box arrived and I opened it, I almost cried. My husband just shook his head at me when I showed him - neither of us could believe I had spent $30 on such a small, simple toy, especially since we just did not have a lot of luck with the boys enjoying most of the wooden toys I purchased.
DS is 4 now. He's generally happy to pass on his toys to his younger cousin as he outgrows them, but he will not give up the people mover - he doesn't play with it anymore, but loves it way too much still. I bought my nephew the busy boat for his first birthday: http://www.northstartoys.com/collections/frontpage/products/busy-boat. My sister later told me that she was pretty unimpressed with the toy when her little guy opened it, and wondered what I was thinking, but it is a favorite of her son, too! He's lost all of the pegs at this point, so I'm going to pick up some replacement pegs for him as a gift. :)
If you're looking for something smaller (and by that I mean, cheaper!!), things DS got around that age and loved/still loves are his tool set, his pots & pans (we don't have a play kitchen unfortunately!), his Melissa & Doug grilling set, and simple puzzles (the wooden ones with knobs, the Melissa & Doug latches board, etc.)
stacking rings, dolly, riding toy, shape sorter, ball track, finger puppets, books, nesting cups, musical instruments
www.oompa.com has nice organization for toys by skills
atoygarden.com has lots of nice gentle ideas, including a people mover like the one above, big hit with us too
Playsilks are loved around here, so is a playkitchen and a box to climb in and out.
If your child is short and/or has short legs, she won't be able use the riding toys. My 15months toes are now slowly starting to reach to bottom of his little car.
Mom to two sweet children - Oct'09 & May'12. Wife to a loving husband. Two little souls lost Oct'14(11weeks) and Mar'15 (13weeks). Expecting a little bean in Feb'16
We got ds a riding toy for his birthday, he is a little small to sit on it. He mainly straddles it and walks it. But I like that he'll be able to grow with it for awhile.
large peg puzzles
stacking train (ours is a Melissa and Doug)
wooden blocks at toysrus??
75 pieces for $15
150 pieces for $30
some of the blocks have paint, so if you're concerned about your little one eating it, you could buy the 150 piece one and stow away the painted ones for later when he gets older?
also, if your DS has a dump truck of any sort, he could put the blocks in and dump them out.
my daughter hangs out with boys most of the time and loves to watch the waste management truck when it comes by the neighborhood.
she always races to her blocks and keeps loading/unloading the dump truck for a good 20 minutes, ehehe!
Oh, I think my DS would love a rainbow people mover!
Things that have been big for us in the three months since his birthday:
- a good, real drum made for children, other real but toddler-sized instruments
- Duplo blocks (we play with these a lot!), plus Duplo people and vehicles
- wooden unit blocks (DS got a big set of Haba blocks for Christmas) or alphabet blocks (I got a good deal on some Uncle Goose blocks so I got three sets...he loves them and they're made in the USA)
- play kitchen, pots, pans, dishes...our best play food comes from the recycling container!
- simple wooden puzzle
- anything that has wheels
- bath tub toys (our favorites are from Boon and Green Toys)
- jumbo crayons, stickers
- books, books, books
We just got a ride on toy from his grandma that, at 15 months, my DS is just able to reach the floor on, and he's 75th percentile for height, so if you get one now it might be a toy to grow into. But my son absolutely loves his fire chief's car. He also got to test drive a Cozy Coupe at a play area last week and that was apparently pretty awesome, too.
I didn't read the other posts yet but dd is 1 and loves her nesting cups. They are her favorite toy. She also loves baskets with handles...I gett hem at the thrift store and she put sthings in them like pinecones, felted rocks etc. She also just got her first doll and cradle and boys can have that too imo but up to you. She has finegr puppets and a couple of stuffed animals and lvoes all of the above. We just got her some silk scarves we're going to dye with koolaid and apparently they are the cat's meow and kids love them all through the years. Blocks are also good though dd mainly likes knocking over towers. Oh, we also got her a purse, wallet, address book...stuff with pockets fromt eh thrift store she can open and check out, i plan to also give ehr some discarded keys on a chain. hth!
We only have a crappy strap-it-to -the-chair highchair, so we are getting this for DD:
She is also getting a Radio Flyer Wagon and set of wooden music making toys.
Holly and David
Adaline (3/20/10), and Charlie (1/26/12- 4/10/12) and our identical twins Callie and Wendy (01/04/13)
The best, biggest hit with DS was one of the BIG Tonka yellow dump trucks. It carries around stuff indoors and out. DS is almost four and still uses it all the time. This winter, he has been using it to carry loads of sand around our driveway, to help treat the ice. Completely durable.
The biggest hits around here with my 16 month old are:
- Pots and pans or anything he can use to "help cook"
- Climbing structures
- Large "lego" type blocks
- Coloring supplies (this is hit or miss)
- Stacking cups
- Outdoor sand table
If he likes balls, how about a basketball hoop for him to shoot in? We got a hoop intended for use in a swimming pool and put it in our kitchen when DD was just over 1, maybe 16 months or so. It's the perfect size for a toddler. At 2y3m, it is still the first thing that DD takes out to play with every morning. In addition to tossing balls in the hoop, she stacks other items in it, sits under it, hangs play people on the net, etc.
DD also really liked simple puzzles, play-doh, markers, board books, and this soft birdhouse: http://www.manhattantoy.com/product/0/201110/_/Put_%26_Peek_Birdhouse
Ds at 1 was in love with his big trucks, a pop-up tent/tunnel/indoor slide setup I had for him, and it was about a month after his first birthday that he got more involved with the big legos.I had the gigantic ones made specifically for toddlers and he spent about two months just practicing dumping them out and putting them back in, but eventually he started stacking them and making things with him. Legos are one the best toys out there, imo.
dd is very much into her stacking rings. She also is starting to get into baby dolls...she tries to make me breastfeed them (lol), pats the baby's back and says "nana" (night night). So some sort of imaginary play.....a play kitchen, a doll or non chokable action figure type toy might be fun. or that might just be a girl thing....I know there is no way ds would have given a hoot about a doll at that age!
Very blessed mama to one bouncin' boy (12/07) one who didn't get to stay (6/09), one potty learning, mess making diva(4/10), and one cheerful milk monster. (12/11) Happy partner to the love of my life.