My Favorite Holiday Toys

I find it challenging ever year to help Santa find a few special toys for my children that they will genuinely love well beyond Christmas morning. I also look for toys that can be multi-purpose and grow with them as their interests & needs change. For this reason, we tend to stick to books and musical instruments as I’ve found they always meet that criteria, but I also like to keep an eye out for a few fun, interactive toys to encourage their imaginations too. Here are a few that have made Santa’s list this year:

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Learning Resources Farmer’s Market Color Sorting Set.  I love this toy because it pulls double duty - not only is it great for helping kids learn their colors, and to sort similar items, but it also makes for a great collection of pretend food in our play kitchen.

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The B. Symphony is one of the gifts I’m most excited about giving the children. This interactive toy teaches shapes, colors, musical instruments and encourages kids to put different sounds together to make their own symphonies. I’ve read lots of excellent reviews on this one and many folks said it’s great from the youngest to the oldest members of their family.

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A cute take on the typical matryoshka doll sets. These little robots encourage sorting, stacking & lots of creative play. My kids are always interested in how things work and love taking things apart and putting them back together. I love that these little guys would be adorable displayed in their rooms, can be staked inside one another for easy travel and encourage imaginary play when played with as a group.

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This is the Chillafish Bunzi. I discovered this balance bike via word of mouth from other parents, as it’s ideal for kids who aren’t ready for a real balance bike yet. (Note: it’s a pretty small bike, only 16 1/2 inches tall, so keep that in mind if your kids are tall) When I started reading about it, I felt like this was made specifically for Arlo. He is obsessed with his ride-on toy but he’s outgrown the one we have and gets his feet caught up in the front wheels because he wants to go faster than they allow (I think I may have a budding dare devil on my hands). He’s not big enough to really pedal a tricycle on his own yet but he loves to go go go!  This little bike is really light weight and can convert to more of a typical balance bike as he grows and gets more steady. I love that the seat is adjustable and lifts up so that he can store his toys in it too. (The amazon link above features a video where you can see the Bunzi in action)

And if you’re still looking for ideas, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite toy brands that we have used and loved in our home:

I think Plan Toys has the best dollhouses and accessories

Melissa & Doug has my favorite play foods

Alex Toys has the coolest Arts & Crafts sets (Edit: My friend Henna pointed out that today 12/6/12 Amazon has a bunch of Alex toys at 60% off! Thanks for the tip!)

Haba makes my favorite infant toys

B. Toys make fantastic musical & interactive play toys (And are easily found at Target)

I’m done shopping for our chillies this year (I’m ahead of the game for the first time ever!) but I’m always on the look out for cool, creative and engaging children’s toys. I’d love to hear your favorites and what you’re most excited for your little ones to open this holiday season.

Love,

M

(Note: There are no affiliate links in this post. I was not compensated by any of the brands listed above in any way for my recommendations and have purchased the toys listed in this post with my own money.)

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