About a month ago, my most amazing cousin and her husband started fostering-to-adopt a sweet 13-month-old girl. She’s rocking it as a brand new mom! As questions have come up, we’ve talked on Skype about sleeping, eating, playing, etc. Last night she asked me about toys: how many to have, how to set up a rotating toy library, what things a 13-month-old would enjoy, etc.
Well, here you go, cuz! An all-out gift guide, inspired by your new little girl and my almost-one-year-old son (in two weeks!!!). By the way, I keep a running Amazon wish list to help me remember good recommendations, and that’s an easy place to reference before birthdays and Christmas. My cousin liked that idea, so I thought I’d pass it along.
Without further ado, the first birthday gift guide:
1. Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site is a bestselling picture book these days, and it would be a fun gift for a little boy as he learns to love and understand stories in his second year of life. (Also, this is what Elliott and I will be giving Gil for his first birthday. But shhh, don’t tell him!)
2. Polka dot dress for a little girl in your life. Babies will start walking around their first birthday, so dresses will no longer be dragged or caught under girls’ knees anymore while crawling. A dress would be a fun way to celebrate this developmental milestone.
3. A wooden alphabet puzzle encourages so many skills, particularly fine-motor and language. Lena loved our wooden alphabet puzzle. When she was about 21 months old, we finished that puzzle about five times a day, and as a result she knew all her letters by her second birthday.
4. Stacking towers are ubiquitous, and I saw why when Lena was about 16 months old. She played with her wooden stacking tower every single day multiple times a day all by herself. Order wasn’t important, but the accomplishment of stacking every piece on the stick gave her so much joy.
5. This ride-on toy will mostly be used as a walker for a brand new one-year-old, but after that it will be greatly enjoyed around the house for years. Every child who comes to our house immediately hops on this bumblebee and zips around. Plus… so cute, right?!
6. A tugboat for bath time! It’s made out of recycled plastic and sure to be a favorite for both girls and boys.
7. A stylish little romper. I am completely smitten with Boden, and Mini Boden is about as beautiful and adorable as children’s clothing can get. Gil received one of their rompers for Christmas, and it’s one of my favorite items in his wardrobe.
8. Dear Zoo is definitely Gil’s favorite book. He gets a smile on his face when we sit down to read it each evening, and he loves opening the flaps and looking at each animal. Lena couldn’t get enough of lift-the-flap board books at this age.
9. Rainbow stacking tower if you want to be more creative than the traditional ring tower. It is made out of wood and looks like an heirloom!
10. These Tegu blocks are wooden but have magnets inside them, which makes them super fun for babies, kids, and adults. This 8-piece set would be perfect for traveling because the pieces will stick together instead of getting lost! (Or at least I hope so… hah.)
11. A little toy airplane for a handsome little boy.
12. Fast track game. Put the wooden cars in the top and watch them flip and fly all the way down!
And now it’s your turn, moms and lovers-of-children. Do your kids (or did you!) have some favorites that I should add to this list?