Thursday, November 27, 2014

Top 6 Toddler Toy Picks From a Mother of 5

With the holidays now in full swing, I seem to find myself once again trying to decide what to get the kids for Christmas.  Toddler toy are among my favorite because toddlers love to play.

Here are some of my top toddler toy picks this year, and lets be clear, although this post contains affiliate links, the toys selected are truly toys I would recommend or buy for my own toddler.  This is her second Christmas and I'm so excited!

1. Play Kitchens
I want this kitchen in a bad way.   My sweet baby Bonnie would love it for years to come and it is REALLY cute!  Kitchens are GREAT toys overall.  All of my kids (even my little boys) have enjoyed playing pretend an making meals in a play kitchen throughout their toddler and preschool years.

Any kitchen also needs food.  I really like the play food and accessories from Melissa and Doug.  They have really fun sets and wonderful quality.

2. Puzzles
Melissa and Doug also has really great puzzles.  Puzzles are like Legos, you know that the pieces will often get spread from one end of the house to the other from time to time and it is often going to hurt your foot when you step on them, but the benefit to your child out ways the potential risk to your feet.   Plus, puzzle pieces are easier to match up and reassemble than those pesky Lego sets.
I rather like this particular puzzle, it is bright, fun, has texture, and is very simple.  Simple Puzzles like this are great for toddlers starting at about 18 months.  My advice is that you really pay attention to the suggested age on the puzzle and your child's abilities.  Giving a toddler a puzzle that is way too hard can frustrate them and then they won't want to do puzzles anymore.  Better to start out easy so your toddler feels confident.

3. Little People
We love Little People! Toddlers can easily play with them and they will love playing with them for years.  Fun and durable!

4. A Small Big Trampoline
We have this trampoline in our playroom (well actually it is the formal dining room, but we just aren't that formal.)  We got it for Christmas a few years ago and it is awesome.  My toddler totally loves it and my bigger kids do to.  It gives enough bounce to be fun but not so much that kids get hurt.  


5. Baby Dolls
If your toddler is into baby dolls, then I just have a few words of advice on baby dolls for toddlers.  Keep your child's size in mind.  You don't want to get a baby that will be too heavy for your baby to carry.  My favorite choice for a first baby is actually the Circo mini babies at Target.   They are so easy for your toddler to carry around.  It doesn't have to be the  Circo brand.  But those little babies are GREAT!  Smaller plush dolls are really great too.  Like the little Mooshka dolls.

6. Blocks
I am not really the biggest fan of blocks, but I've gotta include them here.  Kids love them, but they also love to dump them out and scatter them.  If I am doing blocks, I prefer larger ones or stacking/nesting blocks or cups.  Melissa and Doug have Alphabet Nesting and Stacking Blocks or these Deluxe Jumbo Cardboard Blocks:
Your child gets all of the fun and fine motor skills that they would with smaller building blocks, but there are fewer to pick up and they're easier to find.  Anything Megablocks is great too!

What are your favorite toddler toys?

Friday, November 14, 2014

Festive Yarn Wreath

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I love all the texture in this wreath and it is pretty easy to make.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

DIY Felt Ball Coasters

Why is it that everything looks cute covered in felt balls?? :)  I am totally in love with how these turned out.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Monday, November 10, 2014

Felt Ball Garland Tutorial

I am so excited for this week of felt ball crafts! 
What better place to start than with a tutorial on making felt ball garland.

It was actually when I saw this "Cheery Garland" card from Tiny Prints that I first fell in love with felt ball garlands.

I just love all the bright happy colors and I especially love the silver and gold balls.  I had never seen a felt ball garland that have silver and gold metallic ball in it before. So of course I had to make one.


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