gift guides 2010: ages 1 – 3

This is my favorite age range, because my daughter is smack dab in the middle of it! There are so many wonderful toys that she can grow into – enjoying them now on one level, and enjoying them as she grows and can do much more with them. Hopefully this isn’t just me being optimistic!
For more kids gift ideas, make sure to check out all of Small for Big’s gift guides.

Under $25

Lanky Cats, Ziggy, $10 Age: 3 +
This is one my favorite designs – and at the time it was a struggle to convince the sales team that this design would sell. Lanky Cats have been doing well for Manhattan Toy for several years now. Toddlers love recognizing real animals, and right now for my daughter it’s cats. We can’t go anywhere without Ziggy.(the 3 + age grade refers to the large plastic eyes, but we’ve never had a problem at our house).

P’kolino Wooden Puzzles, $17 Age: 18 mos +
I just love all of P’kolino’s wooden toys, I’ve featured some already on the blog, and there’s another item coming up on this list. Open-ended puzzle solutions will keep your kids a little less frustrated and a little more creative. Plus, when you’re sitting there too, you’ll be a little less bored.

Sprig Toys Eco Dump Truck, $14.99 Age: 3 +
The smell of fresh sawdust is a smell I’ll always appreciate, and believe it or not you can get a little whiff of wood from Sprig Toys. Made of an eco-friendly wood/plastic composite, these toys are built for rough-housing and imaginative play.

Stack ‘N’ Spray Tub Fountain, $24.95 Age: 1+
This bath toy is on our wishlist. I’m honestly hoping it will help my tot be more comfortable in the water (maybe she’ll even sit down in it!). I’m excited to play with the interchangable stacking levels – different combinations make the water move in different directions.

Bob’s Your Uncle illustrated animal flashcards, $35, Age: 2 +
Modern illustration meets you and your kid’s thirst for knowledge. Ok, maybe not your tot’s quite yet, but don’t you want to know the unusual factoids about every animal in this deck? I do.

Barcelona Children’s Accordion, $24.95 Age: 3 +
The age grade on this is 3 +, but I know toddlers will love it before then. Whether or not they can push and pull it like their bigger counterparts, think about all those buttons and playtime with mom or dad to make it work. This one is a must.

Under $50

Giant Constructive Blocks, set of 12, $24.99 Age: 3 +
Did anyone else have these at their preschool when they were wee? Just looking at the picture makes me happy, I can only imagine how much I – I mean my tot – would enjoy these in person. At this price, get 2 sets for more building fun! Blanket fort anyone? (and if you’d like a multi-color version, check to see if these large blocks are back in stock!)

Multiblocks, $48 Age: 2 +
These blocks help kids learn about proportion and scale – each block is measured and marked to be part of another (4 squares = 1 long rectangle, etc.). Plus, it means your buildings will all equal out in the end.

P’kolino Nesting Birds, $28 Age: 18 mos +
This sturdy wooden toy will play peek-a-boo, hide-n-seek, and stack with your kids. All three of those things are the utmost of fun for a toddler, and therefore, for you as well.

twilight turtle stuffed night light, $29.o9 Age: 3 +
This little turtle may not have a ton of stage presence when he’s just lying around the house, but when bedtime arrives, his star(s) shine. With three different color options, Twilight turtle will project stars all over your ceiling and shut off automatically 45 minutes later. Magic.

100 Piece Wooden Train Set, $29.99, Age: 3 +
My daughter is fascinated with trains, and now we’re getting this big old set for Christmas from grandpa (a fellow train nut). This is an outstanding deal available at this price only until Dec. 31. Lots of pieces, lots of track, and lots of fun.


Shoenhut Child’s Grand Piano, $62.90 Age: 3 +
This is written from a toy designer and classically trained concert pianist – you had no idea what you were walking into, did you? But the beauty of this piano is it’s full-size keys. So your little tots can play and learn on this keyboard, and transfer to a real piano without any fuss. Read more about it all in this kids pianos post (and see the red upright version too)

bla bla dress up dolls, $72 Age: 2 +
Blabla Kids are so dang cute, and now these new dress up dolls give them an even bigger appeal. Plus, their large size and simple clothing make it easier for tots to begin to help (getting them undressed of course, what tot wants to put clothes on?!) Plus, there are additional bla bla doll clothes as well.

All Natural Doll Pram, $120, Age: 1 +
In the beginning, just pushing this stroller will be enough, but soon all the animals and dolls (and bags, and blocks, and bowls from the cupboard) will be enjoying the ride.

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