Posts Tagged ‘baby toys’

It’s that time of year again! This year I got an early start on making up a list of toys and games I thought would be appropriate for him.

To be clear though, he’s not really playing with many toys. Our evenings are made up of “wrestling”, running around, playing with his stool, watching tv and looking at books which he likes to read “mysef”


Kid Laptop | Kid Camera | Music Player

In the tech toys, staples are the kid size versions of laptops and cameras, or even the kid-proof case for your own ipad. If you’re strapped for cash, Jameson also has a recycled mouse (cord cut) and keyboard that he enjoys pounding on and standing on.

There are cheaper kid cameras than the one here, but I like this one since you can swivel the lens so you can take pictures of yourself. I take a lot of photos, and Jameson frequently takes my iphone to say “cheese” (and also “hello”; glad he recognizes it’s a phone too). I figured this is a little beyond his  abilities right now, but it will be fun for him to grow with over the next year.

I liked this music player because you can add real songs to it and it will hold up to abuse. I would consider getting some kind of headphones too. This kind of gift will work well for next year too!


Magazine Subscription | Books | Matching Game

Does your child like to get the mail? I started a subscription with Jameson’s name on it, that I was really hoping he’d get into. So far, no dice, but I still think he’ll enjoy getting mail just for him this year.

Specifically, I’m talking about books that relate to daily activities like brushing teeth, switching to a new bed, going potty, and eating vegetables. Jameson has really enjoyed reading about these types of life activities that he can really relate to right now.

The matching game is a really relevant gift for his age, and a step up from the regular blocky puzzles they probably already have. You can just do a couple cards at a time to not overwhelm them.


Mr. Potato Head | Magnadoodle | Backpack

Body parts? Yes.

Of course, a magnadoodle is at your discretion. If you pick one, I would definitely make sure it doesn’t have loose magnets. Jameson is great about not putting things in his mouth yet, but I wouldn’t trust him that far. I like the fact that he can doodle and draw with this without much supervision at any time. Art doesn’t have to happen at the kitchen table. Since he’s not great about sitting still, I am hoping this will encourage him.

And let them start carrying their own stuff! They’ll enjoy the novelty of it, I swear.


Latch Board | Alphabet or Numbers Puzzles | Build-It Yourself Vehicles

In the puzzle realm, improve dexterity with a latch board type puzzle, or their letter and number recognition with the alphabet puzzles.

I spent a long time searching for a vehicle that I thought would act for both regular play and puzzle/thinking skills. A lot of build-it sets are for older children, and I thought this one settled right where I wanted it to. I can’t wait to see how he interacts with this toy.


Doctor or Vet Set | Wooden Train Set | Play Food

For pretend play, there is always doctor or vet sets (the vet sets frequently come with an animal, which is a bonus).

We also got Jameson a wooden train set. I wouldn’t spend a lot of money on it yet unless you know your child adores trains, because eventually you’ll just upgrade to the electric ones anyway. But it allows kids to build it and play with it, so it’s another win in my book!

If the child already has a workshop or kitchen, then this will just enhance it. If not, play food works well on it’s own or with a little kid-size shopping cart. We’ve had fun teaching Jameson what “pretend” means.


Bilibo | Kid-Size Versions of Adult Stuff | Kid-Size Versions of Adult Stuff

As I said, Jameson doesn’t play with a lot of his toys regularly, so this not-toy is right up his alley. It can be whatever he wants it to be! Which will probably be a hat, since he has been putting most things on his head recently.

Jameson is into dice, which are obviously too small for him to play with without close supervision, so I bought him these hard foam dice just over choking size instead.

The vacuum! You don’t have to spend a lot on the Dyson version; this cheap one Jameson has had for a long time already and loves. We are getting him his own little broom this year, and I am willing to bet it will be a top toy as well. Not to mention, it will continue to encourage him as my little helper!

*I have not used or experienced all these products, but I think they’re great ideas. As always, consider your purchases carefully and note any age specific warnings and details.

P.S. Looking for gift ideas for a 1 year old? Check out some of my suggestions.

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Play Kitchen

Sunday we put together Jameson’s play kitchen! Brian was cleaning out the basement and got tired of staring at the extra large box which we purchased a long time ago. We did anticipate giving it to him before his birthday, when it got cooler out, so this was the right time!

Since Brian does the cooking in our house, we thought Jameson might naturally want to imitate him this way. He will undoubtedly get tools and other traditional “boy” toys, but this item was insisted on by me, who enjoys the fruits of Brian’s labor in the kitchen.

Also, I really wanted to encourage some imaginary play, since a lot of Jameson’s play is rough housing and activities like standing on stools, pillows, boxes and containers.

Jameson insisted on being a helper while we built it. He would take pieces to Brian whenever asked, and wanted to use the screw driver to help put things together.

He also knows the word “batteries” now and whenever something doesn’t work, he’ll say “battwies” and follows that with a “daddy” because I frequently tell him that daddy will fix things. So this time, I put in the batteries for the kitchen.

Once it was all finished, we had Jameson make us some broccoli, apple and bananas. The set came with food, and we went through each of them and Jameson repeated after me.

The following day, we had the cutest conversation about his kitchen:

Me: Are you putting Mr. Bear in the microwave?
J: yeah
Me: oh is Mr. Bear all done? Are you going to eat Mr. Bear now?
J: yeah
(Mr.s Bear and Blanket then made their rounds in the fridge and stove shortly after)

Before Trick or Treat, Aunt Melissa came over and they played with his new kitchen too. It’s fun to ask him for a fork, and he’ll run back to get it.

Surprisingly, he doesn’t use the burners which light up and make noise as much as the microwave, which doesn’t make any noise at all but he will press the fake buttons anyway. Pretty cute!

We moved his toy box into the dining room for now since he’s not playing with much in there. So far, the kitchen’s getting a decent amount of use, even if he does like putting unrelated toys into the cubbies!

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Happy Meal

A couple weeks ago, we stopped at McDonald’s for lunch and brought home Jameson’s second or so happy meal. We had gotten one at the zoo before I think, but this time we kept the toy. We accidentally got the big kid’s toy instead of the one for under 3 year olds, but Jameson didn’t care.

After showing him how it’s used, he quickly caught on and used his own steady hand to put the cardboard disc in the slot and pull back the trigger to release it.

He loved diving behind Brian, using him almost like a barrier against enemy forces. Of course, all he was really using it for was pure enjoyment of watching the disc fly over and over again.

He didn’t really eat his happy meal, but I was ridiculously proud of his accomplishment in figuring out how the toy works and doing it himself.

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Saturday was Miss Vivienne’s 1st birthday party! It was unseasonably cool (in the 60’s) and neither Brian nor I knew that it was going to be held outside. So, when we arrived and discovered how chilly it was outside, Brian headed home for some jackets for Jameson and I.

In the meantime, food arrived, and I imagined my terror toddler squirming out of my grasp and/or grabbing at the food to dump it all over me. I was grateful that JP & Lisa were there with Jonathan so that if necessary I could have an adult helper!

However, Jameson was in rare form, and sat still in my left arm while I also held the plate of food right next to him and which I ladled onto with my free hand. I was impressed with myself, for sure.

He then sat like a little angel on my lap on the picnic table, eating off the plate politely with me. Pizza, blueberries, a little pasta. I also enjoyed the meatballs and chips and cheese dip, which Jameson tried at our second helping and enjoyed as well despite a little spice.

Finally, Brian returned with our jackets, and while he ate, we took the kids off to play with the toys they had around!

It was breezy, so it was easy for Jameson to “blow bubbles” by simply holding up the wand at the right angle. He was so excited. He loved playing with the bubbles.

The breeze didn’t stop him from trying to blow the bubbles out himself though:

He didn’t try to dump out the bubble solution either. We were pretty impressed with his maturity; we’ve considering picking a big bubble wand up from the dollar store. It was a long time of entertainment, and would’ve been longer, except that we had to share.

Before Vivienne opened her gifts, we took a break and went down to the nearby playground, which Jameson also loved. It was a perfect location for a birthday party!

After break time, we headed back up for a diaper change and gift opening. I went with my practical-but-still-seems-frivously-awesome StrideRite gift card for shoes for the soon-to-be-walker, and then I also found this gem: Wooden Shape Sorting Clock. It says 3 and up, but the pieces didn’t seem too small for a 1 year old as long as that one year old isn’t insistent about stuffing their face with wood.

Anyway, it seemed like a great grow-with-me toy, and our lucky day, this lucky lady likes to sort shapes like crazy so I’m sure she’ll enjoy it.

Jameson was a champ, but since he had an interrupted nap in order to arrive in time for the party, he was starting to get a little antsy. He said goodbye to Vivienne’s mom Lisa, and gave high fives all around. He’s always adorably shy around Vivienne which makes me laugh.

It was a great time, despite the cool weather (which I argue is better than 100 degree weather any day!). The location was ideal, and makes me wish Jameson’s birthday was in warmer weather. Oh well… we’ll just have to find other excuses to party in the summer!

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The last weekend in July was a busy one! On Saturday, we went to visit Brian’s grandma and Aunt & Uncle. The last time we were there, Jameson was a new crawler, so it had been awhile!

Jameson is showing much more fear, of strangers and loud surprising noises, so he wasn’t inclined to let his great-grandma hold him. He did however give her a high five!

We had also celebrated cousin Stacy’s engagement to Nick when we were there last, and while they weren’t there, we thought of them since their wedding is now just a week or so away!

I don’t care for watermelon (never have; it’s one of the few foods that I have consistently never liked even as an adult), but Jameson enjoyed some!

He did want to gnaw on the rind, but for the most part he ate his watermelon really well, and wanted another!

Great-grandma has a magnolia tree in the backyard, with thick low-lying branches that if Jameson has the chance, I am sure he will climb when he gets older!

Brian’s Aunt Terry & Uncle Wes have a brand new kitten named Zane. When we met him, he was just 7 weeks old!

At daycare, they have a chinchilla owned by one of the teachers who brings him in every once in a while. Jameson apparently loves the chinchilla, so I was hoping he would do just as well with this other tiny creature. Jameson got to pet Zane, and I was excited to see that he did so well being gentle while Aunt Melissa held him.

Jameson however quickly got distracted by his cousins’ toys, and discovered a guitar that they were generous enough to send us home with! He has enjoyed the guitar a lot, and it completes his musical collection of drums, xylophone and rattles. We could host an entire toddler band now!

It was a relatively short visit, but fun despite the interrupting rainstorm. We still enjoyed our summer meal with the watermelon, pasta salad I brought, broccoli salad and burgers! It is good to see Brian’s grandma, who seems to be doing really well this year!

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