There are so many toy options on the market, and when I became a mom to my girls, I was overwhelmed with all the options. It was so helpful to get recommendations from other moms on what toys are must haves.
Today I have connected to a group of some of my favorite mom blogger friends and have put together a list of some of our favorite baby and children’s toys. I know first hand that many of these toys have kept my girls occupied for hours, so it is so great to share with you some of our favorites!
- Jen at Paisley & Sparrow
- Erin at Francois et Moi
- Taylor at Greens-N-Chocolate
- Morgan at Construction to Style
- Jena from A Spoon Full of Faith
The Baby Stella by Manhattan Toy has been one of my girls favorite toys because she is so soft and cuddly and they love the magnetic pacifier that comes with the doll. The doll has inspiried creative role play in both of my girls. They are obsessed with all the soft accessories that go with the doll including different outfits, a bath set, and feeding set. Vivienne loves to bring the doll with us to many places we go and loves to take care of her.
We purchased this play kitchen for the girls a year ago and it quickly became one of their favorite toys. My four year old, loves to create pretend food and feeds it to her animals. The kitchen is so well made and very strudy. It comes with a all in one stove, oven and refridgerator.– knobs turn, doors open and the sink is watertight for real cleanup.
Ava received this jumbo plush Giraffee by Melissa and Doug as a gift for a first birthday. It has become a staple in her room. Not only is the giraffe a great décor item, it has made her room a fun animal kingdom. I love how lifelike the spotted coat and long eyelashes make the giraffe so lovable.
My girls and I love to use chalk in the summer. We spend hours on our driveaway making large scale drawings and creating hopscotches. I just discovered this fun unicorn chalk and was blown away at how vibrant the colors are on the sidewalk. Plus the shape is very easy for my two year old to grip and color with.
This magnetic play set by Petit Collage has quickly become my daughters favorite travel toy. The set comes with two cardboard dolls that stand on a wooden piece and there are over 40 different dress up magnetic pieces. Our last trip to Florida Ava was playing with this set for over an hour. I love how easy to pack up it is and that it is made with non toxic paint.
I have to admit I first purchased this toy for Viv because it is so cute, but it quickly has become one of her favorites.A safe and durable toddler push bike, designed with a child friendly frame, height adjustable soft saddle and handlebar for maximum comfort and vintage bike look, for the mini me cyclist. Balance bikes are the ideal first bicycle and the best way for children to make a speedy transition to a pedal bicycle, bypassing training wheels! I also love the basket in the front because it is easy for Viv to carry toys down to the park.
I just ran across this Feminist Board Book set by Mudpuppy and I had to get it. I want my girls to always know that they have the power to do anything they want to do and this set depicts some of the most important women in our history. The pages are beautifully illustrated and are so colorful. Some of the women depicted in the mini books are Harriet Tubman, Hillary Clinton, Indria Gandhi, Sally Ride, and more.
There are a lot of play gyms on the market. I did a lot of research to find the best one and discovered the Lovevery Play Gym. This gym includes everything you need – from batting to teething to learning to focus – for your baby’s first year of play. The play gym features five development zones that reveal or conceal, to prevent over-stimulation, and promote everything from making sounds, learning to focus, hiding and finding. Both of my girls were occupied for hours in this gym because there was so much to do. This is a must have toy for the girst year of life.
This is a must have toy for any baby. Both of my girls were obsessed with the classic Skwish by Manhattan Toy. The toy is so easy for babies to grab onto and they are instantly attracted to the bright colors. Beads on the toy slide and rattle. It also is a great teather toy and is extremely durable. Every child needs a Skwish!
This book was a life saver for me. I had such a hard time potty training Ava. Since she was already obsessed with her Baby Stella Doll (see my first toy pick) , I was so happy to see they created this book. It was such a great potty training tool and helped Ava use the “big potty” since Baby Stella in the book does.
10. Birdie Tutu
This iloveplum tutu is the hands down the best tutu for pretend play. Since starting dance last year, Ava often wants to dress up like a ballerina and pretends she is a swan princess. with s. We have gone through numerous dress up clothes and was so happy to discover the Iloveplum tutus. Their pieces are so easy and comfy and easy to wash. They also come in so many different colors and fabrics and have a snap bottom which makes it easy to change in and out of.
Ava received this gift for a birthday gift when she turned 3 and she has spent countless hours slicing the vegetables and fruit. She plays with this in her play kitchen (see above) and often pretends to cook for her dolls. I love how the pieces are easy to slice apart and the Velcro actually makes a slicing sound. Also they are made of not toxic ink and are very durable. These are a must have toy for any play kitchen!
This magnetic stackable ice cream playset by Melissa and Doug has been a family favorite. My girls have found hours of enjoyment with. They love making pretend ice cream cones and the magnetic pieces are so easy to stack. I also love how adorable the set is and the bright colors make each ice cream creation so fun. This is a great gift set for any child who is into cooking and pretend play.
This Pretend and Play Cash Register by Learning Resources has recently been such a great learning toy for Ava who is 4 years old. Lately she has been learning more about counting and money. The toy comes with easy to grab , large sized play money and a built in solar powered calculator that has introduced Ava to the idea of using one. The buttons are oversized so it makes it easy for her to use. This is a great learning toy for any child who is starting to learn numbers and currency.
This has been another favorite toy of the girls and is a great compliment to the kitchen set. The set is very easy to put together and comes with over 40 play food pieces. You can actually flip the awning so it can be a Hot Dog Shop or Ice Cream Stand. I also love how durable this cart is and how it actually has pull out drawers. It is a fun set for the kids to play with when they have friends over.
15. Eco Doh Play Set
Another mom friend introduced me to Eco-Doh, natural playing doh and I have been hooked ever since. My two year old still likes to put toys and her hands in her mouth so I love that this doh is nontoxic and 100% safe for little fingers. The jars are easy to open and the doh stays super moist. Its also made from vegetables and wholesome ingredients.
These Water Wow coloring books by Melissa and Doug have been a life saver on our 3.5 hour flights to Florida. You just add water to the marker and the pages change color with just water. They are mess free and are easy to fly with. Each set comes with a place to hold the marker. The best part is they can be used and used again (just simply let the pages dry).
This Eco Paint finger paint set has also been another favorite from Eco Kids. Since my little one often loves to put her fingers in her mouth, I am always nervous using finger paint products that may contain toxins. Finger paint has been a fun way for my girls to explore colors and to express themselves The set includes 5 re-sealable pouches contatining a natural powder mix to make vibrant colors.
After finally moving into a house and having a backyard, we were so excited to get the girls a sprinkler this summer. I ran across this adorable unicorn one at Target and I could not resist. The kids love the bright colors and water spout that comes out of the horn. This has been great for the days that have been so hot and we don’t have time to venture to the pool. It also has been great for entertaining. Last week Ava had a few friends over and they spent hours jumping through the water.
Mega Blocks were a great first building set for both girls. These blocks are a bit larger then the duplo sets and they are easier for small hands to put together. Both Ava and Viv started playing with these when they were 1.5 and still often use the sets to create towers and houses. They are also lightweight and there are a variety of sets on the market so you can continue to add on to your set.
The Blabla knit dolls are another toy staple in our household. I first discovered these adorable dolls at one of my favorite local stores, Oh Baby. They come in a variety of sizes and different animals. Each doll is handmade in Peru and they are super soft. Each doll is 100% cotton and is made from fair trade material. Both of my girls have started a Blabla doll collection and it has been friend to gift them a new one each year.
21. Hippo Rocker
One of my friend’s Morgan from Construction to Style loves this sweet rocker found at Crate and Barrel She says “has a ton of different animals made into rockers, and I love them all! This hippo is one of my favorites; it is so plush and soft and big enough for both boys to hop on and ride along on. I also love the details in the wood accents. Yet again, another adorable and stylish toy that you can leave it and not hide in a closet.”
Love these rattles that my friend Morgan from Construction to Style found. She says” I mean how adorable are these critter teeth rattles from Pottery Barn that come in both a pig or hippo and only for $19. Our little dudes always want something in their hands and to play with since they were just three months old, and these stylish things were one of their favorites. And easy to clean!”
I love this toy that my blogger friend Erin picked as one of her favorites. She has such a good eye and this play tent is super adorable. Erin says, “Let the backyard memories begin! Here’s another fabulous fort option for little campers. Great design, and once assembled, set-up and take down is a breeze. You really can’t go wrong with Hearth & Hand’s designs!”
I love this water table that my friend Jen has for her kids. She says “it is my favorite outdoor toy because the options are endless! When they get bored with just regular water, fill it with dishsoap and let the kids “clean” other toys (or anything else they want), give them cups and let them water plants with the water from the table, etc!”
25. Toy Dinosaurs
Ava has been obsessed with dinosaurs since learning about them in school My blogger friend, Taylor with Greens & Chocolate son is obsessed with this play set. She says ” Lars received toy dinosaurs last year for his birthday and another box of toy dinosaurs for his birthday this year and I’m amazed at how well they keep him occupied! His imagination goes wild, creating stories about the dinosaurs and how they stomp around together. Even Soren likes to get in on the fun, making big “ROARS!”….well, whenever Lars is agreeable to sharing them. “
Now hop on over to our friends to check out their blogs on their top favorite kids’ toys. They have so many great picks!