I know its a little while off, but really, as always, Christmas is coming!
Now that I have children, I try to be organised for Christmas, have Christmas lay-bys, follow things on ebay etc because, lets face it, if I left it til the last minute, under the tree may be empty! So I have been busy researching exactly what toys are out there and I am sharing my favourites!
Obviously each parent is guided by their own child’s interests and my son has shown a fondness for cooking! I think Santa may just bring him a toy kitchen this year, but which one? If my husband was at all handy, I would have him constructing this unisex style…
…but since that will happen when Santa visits mummies and daddies and brings them what they ask for, I am looking at this one:
A good unisex design that is not too big and will cater to both my children for quite some time.
I love buying my kids wooden toys. Yes, there are not as many bells and whistles but you can guarantee that wooden toys will not have broken bits of plastic within 2 weeks! Janod really do some amazing pieces for our littlies and they are fast becoming a favourite brand of mine. My favourites are:
Voilatoy also do some amazing wooden toys…who wouldn’t love this ark?
Now while I obviously love certain styles of toys, I also want toys that help my children learn…but I am not a school teacher…so I have enlisted the help of Clare, a mother of 2 small children who is a Primary School Teacher to guide us and this is what she says…
“Since having children, I am highly conscious of the type of toys my little ones play with. I want the toys to encourage learning and creative play, have longevity and ultimately allow the kids to have fun. For my 3 year old, her favourite toys include a 3 story wooden dolls house and family (from Voila) encourages her creative and imaginative play. Arranging and rearranging furniture, role playing every day activities. I get to see her re-enact and invent social situations. I have also found a book with stickers is also beneficial, especially when we are out and about.
Puzzles are a great activity that promotes spatial awareness, logic and reasoning. I found a wooden 3 layer puzzle (Djeco) it depicts a tree with woodland animals on it and its also about matching the animals to their own habitat.
Another toy is a wooden bear that has wooden clothes that you sew together. Great for fine motor skills and my 3 year old’s budding fashion sense.
My 1 year old loves to play with cars. We have magnetic cars that join together and my 1 year old pushes and pulls them along. The talking zoo animals by Fisher Price is fantastic too as it encourages my little one to move the animals around the zoo and make noises. This toy promotes playful interaction between the kids as my 3 year old role plays and makes up stories and my 1 year old passes animals and puts them down the slide.
Of course books are brilliant and just some of our favourites include:
Indestructibles -wordless nursery rhymes such as Hickory Dickory Dock based in London and Mary had a Little Lamb based in Bolivia. These books are great as they feel like paper with a plastic coating so they can be scrunched up and sucked on and still look good.
BabyLit board books (by Jennifer Adams) including Pride and Prejudice, Alice in Wonderland, Jane Eyre, Romeo and Juliet. They tell the story either as a number counting book or a color book.
Cozy Classic books by Jack Want and Holman Wang uses wool felt pictures and one word a page to tell the story. Moby Dick is our favourite.”
Wow! What a lot of great recommendations Clare has given us! I love hearing about products that are new to me and I certainly need to get those Indestructibles!
If you have been following Macaroon Kids on Facebook you would know that I am starting to slowly build an online store with fantastic children’s products. While not currently live, I just had to share the items that I am stocking.
Who has heard of Uncle Goose blocks? These amazing blocks are handcrafted in the US from sustainable wood and have that heirloom quality that is so lacking in todays toys. As they state… “We’re really in love with learning, design, and creativity. And we love blocks. So this is what we do, and how we approach our craft. It’s simple, creative, old-fashioned, and maybe a little quirky; but that’s the essence of Uncle Goose Toys.”
Well Macaroon Kids is now stocking these iconic Must-Haves and we currently have the classic ABC blocks as well as the Nursery Rhyme block sets. These great blocks also come in different languages, so if you are interested let me know (website will have these added shortly). I also have a box of the French set…they are so fantastic to let my children learn their French numbers, French names for animals etc, they really are a wonder!
I am also currently awaiting my order of Seedling Products. This business, started in 2006 by a mum of 2, produces fantastic DIY creative kits for children. I love hearing of small businesses that respect the human touch, with all their kits being hand assembled! I am so looking forward to receiving the colour-in Earth which won Best Toy Award and the DIY superhero cape! These kits are such fantastic presents, especially for children that already have so many toys! These are the Seedling products I will be stocking and will be added to our website shortly…
And there we have it. I hope this has given you some guidance and inspiration. I would love to list so many more products, for so many different age groups, but no one has all day to sit and read. Follow us on Facebook to be kept upto date when our online store is open xx