Judge me if you must, but I’m totally that person that puts up the Christmas tree before Thanksgiving. No it’s not up yet but I’m already getting antsy. My husband gives me a hard time about my eagerness every year. Some people may say that I’m getting ahead of myself but I just like to drag out the excitement for as long as possible. It’s my favorite time of the year!
I’m not all about the presents, that’s not what brings me joy. I love getting together with family, celebrating Jesus, the lights, the smells… I could go on.
While I don’t focus solely on the gifts, I really do love Christmas shopping and gift giving. I start to think about it quite early, hence this post coming out in October…
I like to buy things that will be well-loved and last a long time. I’m really into open-ended play, wooden toys, and things that spark imagination. We are not a one hundred percent Montessori or Waldorf family however I do like to incorporate their values and ideas.
I don’t like toys that make noise or flash because they do all of the work for my children. I’d prefer to listen to my girls “vroom-vroom” their own toys rather than a recording that plays over and over, even when they’re done playing with said toy. I avoid these types of things because one of my favorite sounds in the entire world is listening to my daughters imaginations run wild. They’re hilarious.
So whether you’re ready to put up the tree or not, the holiday season is fast approaching so best be prepared. Not to worry because I have the perfect toddler gift guide for you!
Around Christmastime this year, my girls will be 3.5 years old, one month shy of 2 years old and our third daughter will be 3 months old. Olive, my baby won’t be getting a whole lot of toys since she’s so young so for this guide, I’m focusing on my big girls!
Here’s what’s on our list…
1. Play Kitchen (IKEA $79)
I like this kitchen because the height of the legs can be adjusted to three different positions so it actually grows with my kids. I also love that it’s not made from colorful plastic because I prefer neutrals!
2. Play Kitchen Accessories (IKEA Pots+Pans $9.99, Utensils $4.99)
At first I was eye-ing up a Melissa and Doug pots and pans set but it was $24.99. For just $14.98 I’m able to get both of the sets pictured above from IKEA. And again, I love that they’re not plastic!
3. Dollhouse (IKEA $34.99)
I love the simple design and wood features of this dollhouse from IKEA. There are so many fun “hacks” and ways to decorate and personalize it as well. It can also be hung on the wall so when my girls are “over” dollhouses, it can be used as a cute shelf!
4. Dollhouse Furniture (IKEA $17.99)
The furniture is well made, trendy and the perfect pop of color. I know my girls will love them. I’m also a fan because there isn’t a million pieces to keep track of!
5. Dollhouse People (Target $19.99)
I love that these people are wooden but also bendable! The parents are 4.5 inches tall and the kids are 3.75 inches tall so they’re small but not so small that they will get lost. Even though they’re bendable they can still stand up!
6. Balance Board (Etsy $51.89)
At first I was interested in a Wobbel board but at a price tag of over $150 and needing to be shipped overseas, I decided to look elsewhere. I found this one on Etsy with awesome reviews. The balance board originally made their appearance in Waldorf schools but made their way into people’s homes. These are great for imaginative play, strength building and exercise. They can be used by children of all ages.
7. Baby dolls (Target $21.99)
All toddlers seem to love baby dolls. At least for my girls, they love being little “mamas.” The open ended play scenarios are nearly infinite. It’s my own personal preference but I don’t want to get them into collectible dolls where they end up wanting a bunch of them and then they end up all over the house. I think one baby each is more than enough!
8. Wooden Doll Cradle (Target $26.99)
Again, just trying to avoid plastic. I think this cradle is super sweet and just the right size for the dolls mentioned above.
9. Tea set (Target $18.99)
I love “tea time” at our house and I know the girls love to have pretend tea parties and picnics but I wanted them to be able to have dishes that they could actually eat and drink from. Tin was an option but they aren’t very sturdy. I also love the colors of these!
10. Puzzles (Target 28.49)
My oldest daughter has developed a love for puzzles lately. I think puzzles are a wonderful option for quiet time activities and as a mom of three young children, silence from time to time is much appreciated! I like the wooden puzzles because they’re much more sturdy than other options.
11. Grimms Rainbow Stacker (Bella Luna Toys $95)
When I first saw the price tag on these rainbows, I laughed. I thought, who in their right mind would spend $100+ on such a thing?! Well now I would! Grimms rainbows have AMAZING reviews and they are so versatile. The arches can be used as a nesting toy but also bridges, tunnels, trains, boats and so much more. These rainbows definitely spark the imagination!
12. Train set (IKEA $9.99)
My youngest daughter has become obsessed with “choo-choos.” You really can’t beat the price on this set either. We used to have a train table but it was bulky and always looked messy. This set can be build up anywhere and then taken down and easily stored.
13. Picasso Tiles (Amazon $49.98)
I’ve been hearing amazing things about these tiles. Children of all ages sit and play with these for hours and the possibilities are endless. I have to be honest, I don’t know how much my children will like them but I know my husband and I will, ha!
14. Play Silks (Etsy $95)
Play silks are a Waldorf staple. They are amazing for creative play. They can be used for dress up, puppet shows, forts, and so much more! They are the perfect, open ended toy.
15. Popsicle Molds (Amazon $8.99)
I love the idea behind the molds with a stick, like a classic “popsicle” but for my messy toddlers, these are so much more realistic! They are reusable silicone sleeves with a cap! There are so many healthy recipes made with yogurt and fruits so my kids are getting a treat but it’s also good for them!
16. Temporary Tattoos (Ducky Street $3)
I love Ducky Street tattoos because they are inexpensive and the designs are unlike any others that I’ve seen. There are so many designs to choose from!
17. Vintage Wall Art (Retro Planet $4.29)
I am in love with these vintage posters. Obviously these are very personal to our style but someone else out there will agree with me that they’re cute! They will go perfect in my daughters bedroom and you can’t beat the price!
18. Swaddle Wall Hanging (Modern Burlap $26)
These swaddles are just so beautiful. I’ve been admiring them for a while. You can use them as a blanket yes, but my intention is to use it as a wall hanging. The scriptures are powerful and the simplicity of the white swaddle with the fancy black lettering is just what I’m looking for. I’m in love with the “Child of God” one!
19. Shopping List Game (Amazon $11.87)
I’ve heard wonderful reviews about this game. I am a board game lover and want to start my kids young. I was trying to find a game that my girls and I can sit down and play to spark their love for games early and this one is perfect for their ages. If your kids love it you can buy extensions with more foods or with clothes!
20. Pajamas (Target $ vary)
My hope is that my daughters can each open up a present with pajamas on Christmas Eve so that they can wear them the next day on Christmas! We always lounge around the house for the majority of the day so it will be perfect! And honestly, kids are just the cutest in their little jammies anyways!
Check out some cool gifts we received last year by clicking here. What are some things on your wish list this year?