We finished our Christmas shopping a couple weeks ago but to be fair, we really only had to buy for our families this year! We decided to gift the kids more experiences and less toys because we’ve been trying to hard to declutter our lives and we didn’t want more things laying around the house. I didn’t want Reagan to miss out on the fun of opening presents, so we did something a little different this year and I thought I would share it here!
Every day in December, I wrapped up a small gift for Reagan to open in the morning. I’d put it under the tree in her room and wait for her to notice it (sometimes not until the afternoon haha) and then she opened it. Everything I wrapped up was a little gift–chapstick, puzzles from the Target Dollar Spot, board books, Christmas books from last year, sticker packs, etc. Everything was something we already had or was less than $5. I plan on doing the same thing next year with the Christmas books so she feels like she’s getting something new even though we’ve had it all along!
For her actual gifts, my parents gave her a new zoo pass and a couple stuffed animals and my in-laws sent a couple gifts over but that’s pretty much it! We have so many toys she already doesn’t play with, and there are still things left over from her birthday that we haven’t gotten out for her yet.
I’ve watched Reagan in situations where there are lots of toys and stimulating activities and she actually gets overwhelmed by it all. She can’t focus and play with one thing because she’s constantly trying to see what else there is. It’s like she needs more attention and supervision when there are more toys because she can’t process it all and needs some direction.
So, here are some of my favorite toys for toddlers that can be played with over and over again while keeping a little one’s interest!
MELISSA AND DOUG
Most of the toys I picked are by Melissa and Doug–they do such a good job making toys that inspire creativity while being simple and durable!
Reusable Stickers//Reagan is obsessed with her sticker book from M&D, this will entertain her for hours AND it’s only $5!
Kitchen Play Sets//We don’t have space in our apartment for a full play kitchen, but these pots and pans and play food sets are great! Between 2-3 yrs old is when kids generally start pretend playing, and Reagan loves pretending to make food and feed it to Elliott and I!
Puzzles//We got these puzzles for Reagan last year for Christmas and she still enjoys playing with them! She’s a little old for the fish and numbers one now, but the alphabet one is still great and is helping her learn her letters. She definitely learned her colors from doing the fish one, so that’s an added bonus!
Noah’s Ark//Reagan loves her Noah’s ark! It helped her learn animals and the sounds they make, and it’s good practice for grouping the animals by pair and playing pretend!
Little Adventurers Dress Up//Reagan loves her princess dresses from Little Adventurers, and I love that they are machine washable and made from soft material. She has Ana and Belle, and she feels so proud when she dresses up like her favorite princesses!
Look and Find Books//Reagan has two of these and she loves them! She points out everything she knows, and asks what things are and learns to repeat them back. The Finding Dory one also helped her learn her colors! If you watch my Instagram Stories you’ll see Reagan likes “reading” her Look and Find book to baby sister 🙂
Those are my top picks for toddlers! Now that I’m thinking about it I will probably have to stock up on some sticker sets and send that kitchen food set over to grandma and grandpa 😉 Happy shopping!