Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Part 1
I have to let you in on a little secret before I start this gift guide. I’m all about quality over quantity of toys. Our playroom is small with open-ended materials that are appropriate for all four of my children (7,5,2,0). Yes, you read that right. All four children can use all of the materials in our playroom (Well, the baby can’t use all of them right now but she won’t get hurt with any that we have out.) That is the special thing about finding a well-made, open-ended material. It lasts forever and can become whatever your child wants it to be- at any age.
Now, I know you are about to be invaded with gift guides. I usually don’t even do one because I feel so overwhelmed by all of the ones other people publish! But, as I’ve been talking to friends I feel like so many people are swarming in their kids toys and can’t even imagine buying them more. I’ve talked to so many people lately about finding open-ended QUALITY toys instead of buying cheaper toys that just entertain their kids for a month and then they get donated. I want people to know where to look to buy quality open-ended toys. (Plus, I want people to know of some local and smaller business’ to buy from so stay tuned for that.) I know some of these toys can sometimes make people cringe with their price tag but let me tell you they are worth it. I would rather give my kids one Christmas present that is a quality toy that they will play with continually for years then ten cheap ones that will end up in the trash or donated.
I’m going to publish three different guides. So make sure to stay tuned for the other ones.
The first guide is things we already own (or very similar products) and have loved for years. I have attached some affiliate links to help you easily find products. These are our top toys the ones that stay out all the time in the playroom because they get played with that much.
1. Unit Blocks – This is one of the most used toys in our home. I’m always amazed at what my kids create with these wonderful blocks. We have both the regular unit blocks set and also the Architectural set and they have been very well loved. I do have to say with these that they are made out of a softer wood so they do get dinged up a bit. If you are looking for some that will stay looking brand new I would spend the money and get a nicer set. But we have been super happy with this set.
2. Magformers – I don’t think I have ever met someone who didn’t love to sit down with Magformers. I’ve seen kids and adults of all ages sit down and play with them. We’ve been giving these to our kids, a small amount at a time, over the years and we have been able to create quite the collection. We have enough now that everyone in the family can sit down and build together. It is fun to see what everyone creates.
3. Play Silks – These play silks are so versatile in what they can be used for. These silks can be a roof for a fort, a beautiful dress, a cape, or something to drag your little sibling around on. They make baby beds and nests for stuffed animals.
4. Dress-ups – Specifically Little Adventures Dress up. Hands down the best place to buy dress ups we have ever tried. They are quality dress ups that last so well. They don’t get glitter over everything and they don’t itch or have annoying buttons or zippers. We have loved everything we have gotten from Little Adventures.
5. Schleich – My kids and I love Schleich animals. They are wonderful quality and look so realistic. They last so well too! I have had babies chomp on them and toddlers bang with them and they still look brand new. I would highly recommend buying a few of these over a tub of lesser quality animals.
6. Musical Instruments – I love having a variety of instruments for the kids to use. Although I probably love these so much because our play room is in the basement so I don’t necessarily have to hear their music every day. 🙂 But I do love all the educational aspects of having instruments around.
7. Play Kitchen – We have had this KidKraft play kitchen for many, many years and it has been well loved. My kids play with it all the time. I originally thought about getting a smaller one to save on space but I’m so glad I got this one. The kids can store all their play food in the kitchen instead of separate bins so it makes clean up much faster and it looks nicer having everything stored inside. I also love KidKraft customer service. My son was a little to rough with one of the doors on our kitchen set when he was little and he broke it right off. Their customer service was so prompt and helpful. They took really good care of us to replace the door.
I hope you found this guide helpful! The next guide will be coming soon so stay tuned!