Post Punk Kitchen Forum

Favorite Toys
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Author:  dragonssister [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:07 am ]
Post subject:  Favorite Toys

So, I wanted to make a thread with links or suggestions for favorite toys for different age groups. Lorelei's first birthday is coming up so I have been holding off on buying her many new toys so that I can hopefully get her some great stuff that is more her age and developmental level for her birthday.

What were your kids favorite toys at age 1?

Actual stuff that I can buy. She played with a carrot today for like 15 minutes, that's not what this is about.

Author:  Tofulish [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:12 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

I need this thread! I got a great link of toys that are best for encouraging mobility that I have used (and will repost), but I need more ideas for developing manual dexterity. She shows no interest in her stacking blocks yet....

Author:  JENNA [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:01 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

This is Miles favorite 1 year old birthday gift by far:

It's IKEA, mad cheap and he loves figuring it out. He hammers the pegs, sometimes pushes them through with his hands and will then turn it around and do it again. He pulls the pegs out and tries to put them back in. If he finds a peg lying about he'll take it and look for the toy to put it back together...all this on his own. I feel like it's a great learning toy.

Author:  bodhi [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

LittleBodhi really liked that Ikea peg/hammer toy too. And it's totally worth the $6, because it will last for a few years - he still likes to play with it sometimes, and now he's four years old. Awesome. (Or one of those cubes with lots of different shapes to put blocks into.)

These are what we liked/will do again for impending baby:
-Wooden puzzles that have handles on the pieces.
-A good set of wooden blocks is perfect. It will also be fun for several years. Maybe at one, it will mostly be fun to sort the different shapes or colours and hit them together, but your little one will be able to decide what activities are fun with blocks as she gets older too.
-We also have a wooden abacus (I think Melissa and Doug brand?), which is fun and colourful.
-Play-doh is good. It can be bought or made at home.
-Really chunky or fat crayons. We also bought a roll of paper to set on the table, and we just pull out more as needed, and cut the art in whatever size it ended up. (We also liked washable bathtub crayons, but make sure they don't go in the water! They will slowly melt away.)
-A little basket of play fruit and veggies and groceries. This is kept at LittleBodhi's Nana's house, and he especially loved it when he was younger. The food is plushy, but plastic or wood works too. Kitchen toys are also a big hit. Kid-sized spoons and pots, etc.
-Animal sets, like little animal figurines. We actually don't have any of these, but I want to get some when the baby is closer to a year.
-Those stacking ring sets are good too.
-Balls, with varying textures. Sometimes you can find some called sensory balls, I believe, with funny bumps on them. A basketful of these are great. Oh, get a soft one with a bell inside. Those are fun.
-If you get a few small baskets or bowls, you can fill them with any kind of small (non-choking-hazard, of course!) toys, and your little one can fill and empty the bowls. And then stack the bowls. Etc.

Ahhh, sorry, this is quite long! Anyway, what we usually look for is stuff that will be interesting to the senses and imagination. So things that use a combination of sound and sight and textures are great. Anyway, hopefully this is useful to you!

ETA: Oh, we also really like buying toys that will be used longer than not - ie, little blocks that a baby or toddler would have fun with, crayons, etc, but not so much those obnoxious coloured plastic kinds that often require batteries, take up lots of space, are only fun for like a week. When we bought those kinds, LittleBodhi played with them for a while, but they break easily or stop being fun pretty quickly, and he just plays with his favourites anyway.

Author:  Ariann [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Malka currently loves stacking rings (she can do them herself, of course not in order), various balls, a drum and other percussion instruments, and a toy where you put balls in the top and they come out the bottom.

Author:  Butternut [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Lucinda has loved brightly colored child-sized nesting bowls since about five months.

Author:  dragonssister [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

I've been looking into all kinds of instruments lately! I got her a little drum but she just tries to eat the mallet so I'm going to try again in a month or so.

Author:  Ariann [ Tue Jun 19, 2012 10:11 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Eating the mallets is part of the learning! Malka and I took a music class starting at about 4 months and five months later she still sometimes sucks/chews on the instruments, but the proportion of actually using them to using them as chew toys has slowly gone up over the months. She now can really rock out on the drums.

Author:  Aubade [ Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Kai really loved this stacker he got for his 1st bday:

And this Melissa & Doug picnic basket gets a lot of play:

Author:  mittenmacher [ Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:00 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Walter's favorites now (at 18 months) are a work bench and his baby with a little stroller he can push around. At a year, he was just learning to stand up and walk, so pull to stand types of toys were great. He also loved to empty and fill containers, so blocks that come in a box or a bag are great. Stacking/nesting toys, books with flaps, balls. Really simple stuff is best.

Author:  flavabean [ Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:49 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Thirding the stackable toys. Ezra loved stacking boxes at that age. We had some soft blocks that were good for towers (we have since moved on to the wooden alphabet blocks, and those are a bisque when they fall on you or you step on one...)

Ezra lost the desire of sticking the mallet in his mouth around 18 months, and regained full mallet privileges at that time. Now it's a magic wand or an instrument to sneak up on mama with in attempts to shove it up her butt. Sigh. I miss the mallet-sucking days.

Author:  Shanti [ Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Ada loves this: ... ket/Detail She's a month old but grabs it and chews on it, and it doubles as a blanket in her carseat. We also have another Yellow Label doll that doubles as pillow. Their stuff is super soft and fair trade.

Author:  Tofulish [ Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Thank you for reviving this thread! Its almost Leela's 1st birthday and I have no clue what to get her.

Also, this made coffee come out my nose.

flavabean wrote:
Ezra lost the desire of sticking the mallet in his mouth around 18 months, and regained full mallet privileges at that time. Now it's a magic wand or an instrument to sneak up on mama with in attempts to shove it up her butt. Sigh. I miss the mallet-sucking days.

Author:  ismloveyoubobbybrown [ Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:03 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Besides Legos most toys have been useless and I regret buying them (even second hand because they are taking up space). My kids like sticks, kitchen utensils, and anything they can pretend is a gun.

ETA: The one toy that is truly beloved (by both the 1 1/2 and 4 year old) is this hand-me-down Thomas the Tank Laptop. It is so damn annoying, but they cannot get enough of it. They love having a computer like Mom and Dad, and it does a lot of different letter games that let me rationalize the passive play.

Author:  annak [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Things Violet has liked lately (14mo):

- felt/cloth food and tools. Ikea has a cute soft tool set and foods as well (we have the fruit basket and I learned after getting it home that it's supposed to be "3 and up" but looking at it I can't for the life of me figure out why - there aren't any small parts. I'm pretty sure the tool set said 1 and up, but obv IANAL, check to make sure, but I will tell you that almost EVERYTHING says 3+ so I just use my judgment... I mean, otherwise my kid's sucking on AA batteries so I think I'll take the risk with the felt kiwi)
- stacking rings
- wooden xylophone thing
- my friend got her one of those color sorting sets with plastic fruits and vegetables, and while she doesn't really get the color thing yet, she loves playing with the plastic food and she'll get the colors eventually
- board books, especially ones with textures ("touch and feel" or "lift the flap" type books) She likes really simple simple stories - "Corduroy Bear," one of my faves, is still a little boring for her, "Duck in the Truck" is super cute but borderline.. She loves "Violet's House" and "Airplane Flight!" and oh man, she ADORES this "Who's the Bunny" book that is super short and is just different animals with "is this a bunny? no, this is a frog. Ribbit ribbit." It's fine but we have to read it OVER and OVER and OVER again. I guess that's good? Sort of? Another popular one right now is "What Time Is It?" by Tony Tallarico, left over from my kid days.. "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" is apparently boring. We got an Eebee "Clean Up Time" book from the library and she has been loving that. Simple text, lots of pictures of babies, but the clean up after yourself message hasn't really sunk in yet ;)
- This flashcard set was a hit when it arrived yesterday: ... lash+cards
- Recently got her a little set of plastic dishes (had to take the plastic silverware away because the cat was being poked with the fork repeatedly) and the Melissa and Doug pots and pans, which she loves but mostly just scatters around my kitchen..
- a Swiffer with only one metal link in it. We also have a toy swiffer for her, but the toy is $20 and the real swiffer is $6.

ETA: it's not a board book, and she's young for it yet, but "a paper hug" is a really cute book that deals with deployment.

Author:  Zoey [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

This has been Baby Zoey's all time favorite toy: ... =cat+piano

We got it for her around the time that she turned 1 and it is still her favorite to this day and she is 3. It started out with her banging the keys to make music, then she discovered that it played songs so she would kind of sing along. Now she turns on the songs to dance and likes speeding up and slowing down the rhythm. I see them at garage sales all the time but I have never regretted paying full price for it.

You do have to have a pretty high tolerance for music and silly songs about cats for this to work. For me it was awesome.

Author:  annak [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

We have a toy vacuum cleaner that plays songs about how great cleaning the floor is ("Home, home on the floor.. I can vacuum from here to the door! I can work while I play, cleaning up every day, and tomorrow I'll vacuum some more" <= this is the most depressing song ever), so cat songs sound pretty good. Thanks for the suggestion )

Author:  Audrey [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

haha oh man we have that keyboard and even at 3yrs old Dahlia still likes it! but then my sister went and bought her the guitar by the same company - it's a dog that plays dog-related songs - and our patience for cutesy songs wears a little thin. To be honest, my problem is the songs are stupidly catchy and I find myself singing them in my head wayyy too much.

Author:  refinnej [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Oh yay, thanks for this. Birthday and Christmas coming up and I've been thinking about what the bean might like. I've been thinking about adding a push/walker toy to her collection, but our house is really really small, so not sure about that. I'd completely forgotten about puzzles! We were going to get some play phones too, but ended up giving her a broken one that we've glued the back onto (the battery compartment part).

Her faves now, at ten months:

- This thing, which we play with every single day, I sure: ... nting-Toy/
- A neat drum/shaker set (the shakers store inside the drum) that we got on vacation this summer
- Stacking/nesting cups
- anything in sets/with pieces (also works with my plastic cards, a box of sharpies, clothespins)
- books with lift-up flaps
- balls to roll back and forth
- a spinning top (this is just new)

We really spend an awful lot of time with just "stuff" though.

Author:  Aubade [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 7:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

I guess this is obvious but no one mentioned it so I will. Kai's favorite toy at 1 year old, and still, would have to be cars. Any kind of car or truck, he has one in his hands almost constantly. My personal favorite is this recycled one by green toys:


He takes it in the tub and even sleeps with it sometimes.

Author:  tank [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

also have an almost one year old and glad this got bumped!

I think we might get him a hand drum for his birthday. My partner is a drummer and insists we get him a real one and not a toy. I guess the synthetic skinned ones are a lot tougher and can be good for babies? I don't know but he is dead set against getting toy musical instraments. I want to get him some maracas or something too.

Author:  Tofulish [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:24 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

We were at a friends and she had mini maracas and they were the best. Plus Ariann has a big bowl of plastic fruit that rattles and the babies go crazy for it. It is awesome.

A site with amazing Montessori toys. I really like the idea of child-sized tools etc.

Author:  Aubade [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Kai got a bunch of toy musical instruments for his 1st bday (maracas, chick shakes, tambourine, xylophone, drum...) but he just isn't into them. (which sucks because it has totally shattered my dreams of becoming like the partridge family)

Author:  Ariann [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:50 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

Malka's percussion toys are "real" instruments - all made by real percussion companies, not toys, just the right size for kids. She has maracas, "eggs," the fruit shakers, tambourine, and a gathering drum (which lives at my MIL's, it's big). The gathering drum is a great big deal kind of present (I think it cost around $75-100) and great if you have space for it. It can be played with mallets or by hand, is fun to climb on (and is strong enough for that), and actually sounds good. You can also turn it over and use it as a giant bowl for throwing stuff in, which is endless amusement. Lots of real percussion instruments are very kid-friendly. At our music class the teacher has a giant box of percussion instruments that the kids can choose from and play - they're all really interesting and weird little instruments.

Malka's also into chunky toy trucks now, her little car that she rides (she can only make it go backwards now) that has buttons that beep and play music as well as a keyboard on the front, balls as always, stackable toys. I've tried several times to get her interested in stuffed animal things, particularly one that my sister made her, with minimal luck. Putting things into her toy box and taking them out is still super interesting to her.

Author:  FootFace [ Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Favorite Toys

A movie I made about one of TRS's toys when he was tiny, many years ago:
(Click the image)

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