Gift Ideas for Little Ones

Gift Ideas for Little Ones

I remember one day when I was a little girl going with my Grandpa Doobydoll (yep, that's what we called him) to M.E. Moses, the old dime store in Dallas' Snider Plaza.  For some reason, my Grandma wasn't with us and I remember the moment of panic I felt just before we walked in.  "I hope he knows he's supposed to get me something here," I thought. "Maybe I should tell him just in case."  And I did.  I specifically told him that it was something that all grandparents had to do.  And he said, "Oh really? Well, thank you for telling me."  I remember feeling very satisfied that I had just saved him the embarrassment of not following proper grandparent protocol when going to the dime store.  Really and truly, I believed I had done him a favor.

I'm sure by now most parents know what they are getting their kids (or what they are not getting them).  I think I have successfully convinced Edward that a bearded dragon might be a 7-year-old present so if Santa doesn't bring one, it's only because he's not allowed, too.  I'm pretty sure he's buying it because he told all of the TSA agents at the airport the other day.  I did make the mistake of describing "coal in your stocking" as being like getting some rocks in your stocking.  Because Edward would be happy to receive a bag of rocks (boys) he interpreted it to mean that Santa throws rocks at you if you are naughty! I mean, what?

Anyway, these gift ideas are more for those of you who are buying gifts for other people's kids and want to get them something good.
Hanna Andersson Sleeper Marine Stripe - These are so cute and make great gifts because they are not necessarily in every parent's budget for kid PJs.  The zipper is key.  Great for busy parents who maybe don't have time to change their kid out of their PJs before they leave the house.
serenaandlily.com


Sweater Knit Baby Blanket - You can never have enough baby blankets.  They get dirty and fall on the ground in parking lots and who has time to do all of that laundry.  I love the pop of citron on this one.
serenaandlily.com


Mini Trampoline - I have this in my living room after I was unable to convince the boys that the springy part under the sofa cushions was not a trampoline.  It doesn't take up too much space and they can jump all they want.
toysrus.com


Dress-a-saurus Rex - Kids love dress up and these are great because they can't outgrow them next year.  That's cute that they put girls in the dino costumes.  They also have butterfly wings. I once pitched such a fit when I went to get my tonsils out because they gave me train pajamas, that they actually didn't do the surgery.  Just saying.
landofnod.com


Squishy Toy Egg - My kids love squishy toys.  We have ALL of them ever made.  Edward has asked for a squishy gorilla and a squishy platypus (?), but the squishy egg is the best Santa could do.  At least with boys, squishy toys are always a winner.
onlinesciencemall.com


Good Luck Minis - These are super tiny so may not be good for little ones, but Edward loves these.  I'm learning that just like girls love to put things in their purses, boy like to put things in their pockets.  These are perfect for that.  I found these at Hobby Lobby as well.
tgftoys.com


Little Bean Nap Mats - These are the creation of my super stylish sister-in-law.  They come in lots of different patterns, are all organic, have an attached pillow and blanket and are easy to roll-up.  My favorite thing is the little pocket where you can put the pacifier, a love note or even one of the Good Luck Minis above.  
littlebeanshop.com


The Book With No Pictures - This is the cutest book.  Every time I read it to Edward he laughs hysterically.  It does say "chicken butt," which I don't love but I use it as an opportunity for Edward to put me in time-out (kids love to do that).  The point of the book is that parents have to read every word on the page.  It is really silly.
thebookwithnopictures.com


Magformers 30-piece Set - Apparently these are all the rage.  They are a little pricey, but I've read that it's worth it.  This is the kind of thing parents often want to get for their kids, but can't always justify, which is why it would make a great gift.  (I did get these for Edward because he loves building things so Nanna and Grandma Suze hold your horses ;))
the-learning-tree.com


Wooden Fish Stacker - The colors alone are so pretty, but these are also extremely durable and feel safer than plastic.  We have the wooden blocks and my kids love them, but I think the Honey Bear (who is now 16 months!) would love these for the stacking component.
littlebeanshop.com


Gracie Cat by Hazel Village - These Hazel Village animals are my new go-to baby gift!  My sister-in-law gave the Honey Bear Owen the Fox when he was born and he sleeps with it every night.  It's safe to put in the crib with babies and he would use the arms and legs as a pacifier.  It says hand wash, but I throw in the washing machine all of the time.  They have all different animals with cute little stories.  They are the best!
littlebeanshop.com


Mermaid Dress - Because who doesn't want to be a mermaid??
littlebeanshop.com


Zingo - We play this game all of the time.  Edward always manipulates it so he can win.  It's very easy and a great learning tool.  It's great for four and five year olds.  Also, Edward's preschool teacher has her masters and said she read a study that the one thing most prison inmates had in common across the board was that they didn't play board games growing up.  So there's that.
the-learning-tree.com


Cyril Sloth - this might be more of a gift for me.  We don't need another stuffed animal.  I have a hard time getting rid of them because how do we know they don't have feelings? Blame The Velveteen Rabbit.  Anyway, I see this guy everywhere and just want to take him home.
jellycat.com


Waiting Is Not Easy - We bought this book the other day and will probably read it every day until Christmas morning.  I love the Piggie & Elephant books because I get to use my theater voice and Edward thinks they are hilarious and makes me act them out with him.  This one is super cute and I think my favorite of all of them because of the end (which I won't give away).
pigeonpresents.com


And while we are talking about giving and toys and kids, I wanted to share this book/new tradition we are starting this year.


Edward's Elf brought it to him direct from Santa after he saw how much Edward loved putting money in the Salvation Army buckets.  It's really a cute book about giving that comes with a special "giving bag" and a keepsake bell from Santa.  Basically, your child gathers toys and clothes to put in the bag and leaves it under the tree.  Santa will come and take everything in it (and I added that he might leave him a little treat in return).

While I want my kids to find joy in giving, I also understand that when they are young it is often really hard to grasp that every one isn't living in the same kind of household.  Their little world is so tiny and comfortable, which is such a blessing, and I hope it gives them a solid foundation so they can go out and help others less fortunate.  This book really is a great starting point for little ones.  I also love that it uses Christmas magic to encourage children to get into the spirit of giving.  And who doesn't want an extra visit from Santa?!*

*Actually, me as a little girl.  I was terrified of Santa.  I had no idea why once a year a grown man was allowed into our house by way of chimney while we were sleeping and no one seemed to be at all concerned that something could go terribly wrong.

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