With millions of toys on the market and precious little free time to research them, many moms have been trading tips on choosing holiday gifts for their toddlers. To simplify your gift research, here's a round-up of great toddler toy advice from Circle of Moms members.
- Arts and Crafts. Play-Doh, washable crayons, finger-painting, stickers, ink stamps...many Circle of Moms members recommend arts and crafts gifts for toddlers. If you're concerned about messes, Andrea C. suggests bath crafts: "They make lots of different bath crayons and finger paints that then just wipe off the surfaces."
- Little People from Fisher Price. Many moms, including Tana K., have great things to say about these chunky, easy-to-grasp figurines: "I love Little People. There is so much selection—from the town center to the animals to the wheelies."
- Musical Toys. Toddlers love making their own music. April W. gave her 15-month year old a toddler-friendly xylophone, wave drum, and maracas, while Carla O. suggests the LeapFrog learning drum, Little Tikes piano, and Fisher Price guitar. Other moms also suggested sing-along CDs and DVDs from companies like Baby Einstein.
- Kitchen Toys. Kitchen toys can provide toddlers with hours and hours of entertainment. Joy B. recommends plastic pots and pan, while Amy E. found a food set "kids can 'cut' slices out of." Or, to teach your toddler where some foods come from, look for gardening toys. As Sarah E. shares, "My son loves to water the flowers with his watering can!"
- Push Toys. Ever on-the-go, toddlers loves toys that move with them. "His favorite toys are things he can push around," says Amber of her toddler. From mini lawn mowers to grocery carts and vacuums, colorful push toys come in a variety of forms, some that delight by making noises as they roll. (Just be to pick one that you don't mind listening to!)
- Books, Books, Books. When in doubt, books are always a good gift for children. Over 50 Circle of Moms members have weighed in with recommendations for great books for babies and toddlers. While favorite titles vary, many agree that touch-and-feel books are big winners with this age group.