I’m using today’s (late) 5 Favorites post to share with you some of my favorite toys, that my kids also love. None of these is a flashy, make-them-scream-and-jump-up-and-down-when-they-see-it toy. There are no sparkly Elsa dolls or dresses on this list, though those gifts certainly have their place (and my girls will be getting a few such gifts this year). These gifts aren’t flashy, but they do have staying power. The things I’m sharing here are the things my girls go to over and over and over again. They play with these things in so many different ways. They’re just brimming with possibilities.
I thought I’d share them with you in case you’re not sure what in the world to buy that special little person in your life for Christmas. This isn’t me hinting for someone to buy these things for my kids. We already have all this stuff. I’m just trying to be helpful for all of you.
1. Magna Tiles
A friend of mine got these as a gift for Miss one year, and since then I think all of my friends who have seen them at my house have purchased these for their kids. These are the best building toys ever. They’re versatile. They store in a small space. And no one is going to scream obscenities while hopping around on one foot after stepping on one of these.
I have always had the hardest time figuring out what to buy for Christmas for little ones in the 0-2 year range. I’ve never been fond of the idea of buying tons of baby toys that they’ll outgrow in six months or less. This is one of the best gifts to buy for this age group, in my opinion, especially if you have older kids and are already overflowing in the baby-toy department. The little ones love to sort these and stack them and chew on them, and the tiles last and last. I got a box of these for Sis for her first Christmas to add to the box we already had. And I bought more for them for this Christmas.
All of my girls, ages 2 to almost 6, love playing with these. They’re a little on the pricey side, but I’ve purchased all of mine at great discounts. Amazon has them half-off from time to time, and the ones I bought this year were cheap on Zulily. And they’re so worth it.
2. Play Silks
My girls play with these so much, ours are starting to tear and fray. Lately their game has been to tie them all together and string them around the playroom in an elaborate way, or pull each other around with them, or pretend they are looong pet snakes. These have also been used for all sorts of dress up, as blankets to wrap baby dolls up in, and to pretty up a blanket fort.
These are fabulous for any age.
My older girls spend hours doing these. Then they play with the finished product. They started with the beginner ones and quickly advanced to the more difficult ones. I know these aren’t exactly the best activity for encouraging creativity, but they are great for learning numbers and fine motor coordination. And for keeping them busy, independently, for several hours. I’d say these are good for the 3 and up age range. A three year old would probably need a decent amount of help on the easy mosaic. The harder ones say they’re for 5 and up, but Lass can do them just fine (she’s 4).
*Note – The gems on the advanced ones don’t stick very well. I help the girls with these and we put little bits of glue on the help them stay. Kind of annoying, but we haven’t had any mosaic sets that are predominantly covered with gems. I think these might make me change my mind about the brilliance of this item.
4. The Rody
I love the Rody. Each of my girls has one. This is another great gift for the really little ones that will grow with them for several years. Miss is probably too big for hers (she’s almost 6), but she still rides it anyway. And the girls play other games with them where they line them up on their sides and stand and bounce on them while holding the counter. Rody also makes a good veterinary patient.
I’m pretty sure my girls will have exceptionally strong leg muscles from all the time they’re spent bouncing around on these guys. I’d say age 18 months to maybe 5-ish (I wouldn’t buy this for a five-year-old though, as it would be outgrown fairly quickly).
My girls are crazy about animals, especially Lass. We have a ton of plastic animals that they play with all the time.
Quite a few of our animals are not made by Schleich, and come from the dollar store or the dollar section at Target. But you can only buy so many cows and lions before you need to branch out to something with a bit more variety. Schleich toys are so well made and they have so many to choose from. When Lass asked for an Okapi toy? I found one from Schleich.
They have everything. Except an oarfish, which is one of Lass’s latest interests.
These toy animals are wonderful for all ages. They have knights and fairies and other fantasy creatures too.
Now, please share. What are your favorite toys with staying power for your kids?
Check out more favorite things at Call Her Happy’s link up.