By: Nina Meyer
When buying gifts for toddlers, it's good to have a parents opinion.
There are so many things that LOOK cool and SOUND great, but, until you've experienced the true joy, panic and shock of what toddlers can do with those gifts, you could end up buying something thats doomed for the trash.
Here's some pointers from those of us who have been down this path already.
THE WORST - Beads and Glitter
Anything with thousands of tiny beads or glitter. As soon as you’ve experienced this you’ll understand why. Remember the joke ten years back of mailing someone a “glitter bomb”? That is literally what you are gifting if you go down this path. Those beads and glitter will be EVERYWHERE. For years. In hair, on babies, in every corner of your house, Ugh, lord save your carpet. Walk slowly from the glitter bead bomb and towards something you’ll get thanked for.
A BETTER OPTION! - BIG COLORING BOOKS
Really Big Coloring Books I mean - REALLY BIG. Like A GIANT COLORING BOOK, like half the size of a table. A toddler who likes to draw will think it is SO cool. My son who said like 3 words said his first, “WOW” when he got into it. It’s big enough to keep them enthralled and entertained for hours spread out on the floor. Or you can just get a big easel and paper and draw cartoons on it yourself like you see here.
These are also great for working on sharing, as two can work on either side of the book without having to touch each other (the horror). These coloring books are manufactured in the United States of America and guaranteed 100 percent safe with non-toxic inks, paints and dyes. LOVE IT.
THE WORST - WHISTLES
A whistle. Seems unassuming right? Cute thing to tie on a ribbon?
Well, before you grab that dainty little sound blaster in the checkout stand of your store to round out your gift bag ask yourself one question, “what would it feel like to have this blown in my face at full volume for 4-6 hours?” ehhh...see where i’m going?
Whistles are gifts that only a parent should buy, so they have no one to blame but themselves.
A BETTER OPTION! - SOUND BUTTON BOOKS
They teach a love of reading, interacting, and duplication, while holding attention for hours. The sound effects are engaging and cute and a reasonable volume.
And the buttons are easy for curious fingers to push. Always a great go-to gift.
THE WORST - MAKEUP
Guess what toddlers do with makeup? They cover themselves with it.
And then all their friends with it. And then they attack their parents with it. And then they eat some of it.
And then they run around with wide red lip mouths and purple black glitter eyes and scare all the babies.
A caboodle full of wet and wild may seem like a cute idea but in reality, the lipstick toddlers don't eat, will end up smeared across faces and walls.
All the party guests will go home looking a lot more like Freddy Kruger than Dolly Parton. A BETTER OPTION! - CLIMBING TOYS
This wonderful invention may be a bit (ok a lot) more pricey than a makeup kit, but you won’t have to clean stains off of your walls and every other reachable surface so it just might be worth the investment.
Safe climbing toys are a spectacular way to teach fine motor skills, promote independence and gain self awareness (not to mention help children learn balance and coordination).
It’s a great way to burn energy (no more dreading rainy days!) Foldable, easy to store, well constructed and will last for years. Also, BONUS, it can keep those little tikes from climbing on the coffee table! couches... bookshelves, the tv cabinet etc.. etc etc.
A sure crowd pleaser.
THE WORST - MARKERS
Markers are legitimately the worst.
I don’t know why so many people are ok with markers for toddlers but please don’t give them to my child.
They stain EVERYTHING they touch, bleed through coloring book paper, and once the cap is off for like 5 minutes it’s BROKEN and now you have an aggravated little angel covered head to toe in purple stripes throwing a level 37 temper tantrum because their marker doesn’t work anymore.
Yes, granted, the color pigmentation of crayons is not as great. But really, is little Timmy getting a spot in the Louvre with his teenage mutant ninja turtle?
Washable crayons are actually washable, they don’t dry out and if they break in half, now you have two crayons!
Either way: Here’s a better toy to spend your hard earned money on.
A BETTER OPTION!