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This holiday season I am working hard to be more mindful of what comes into our home–we are going to do a big purge and donate gently used toys to make room for a few new things, we will be asking for non-toy gifts from family and friends, and hubs and I will be sticking to a more minimal gift approach for each of our little ones.

I wanted to pull together a simple holiday gift guide that focused on more open ended toys that are suitable for a variety of ages, as well as promote more active play. So without further ado, I bring you my very first holiday gift guide.



1. Grimm’s Rainbow Friends– These adorable little wooden people allow for endless creativity and pretend play. They can be used for dollhouse play, block play, color matching and sorting games. Using peg people instead of regular action figures allows kids to use more of their imagination as they have to envision the whole character vs being given a complete visual representation.



2. Wobbel Balance Board– This is an extremely versatile “toy” that kids of all ages can play with. Whether its baby using it to practice pulling up or low height climber, toddlers using it as a bridge, a tunnel, a surf board or a seesaw. The possibilities are endless. This one of my must haves for gross motor development.



3. Piklar Triangle– This is another must have for gross motor play. This climber can be used by a variety of ages and is the perfect way to give the gift of appropriate risk taking to your little one.



4. Silks– The ultimate in open ended play. My kids use these to build forts, as superhero capes, props for dancing, as blankets for their dolls, they ball them up and pretend they are garbage to be cleaned up. These are played with daily.



5. Grimm’s Geo Block Set— This beautiful heirloom quality block set is a classic that should be a staple in every playroom.



6. WAYTOPLAY roadway— This flexible road is a must have for any vehicle loving kid. They even have expansion sets so your little one can build an epic track to race cars and trucks.



7. Tegu blocks— The perfect mix between classic blocks and our beloved Magnatiles. These are a must have for any child who loves to build. Another early STEM toy that will be loved for years to come.



8. Haba Roll n’ roll track— A ball run that will help little ones learn cause and effect. It’s also a multi-sensory experience as while the ball rolls it high fives the little people, chimes a bell and rolls over a texture track.



9. Haba Butterfly Threading Game— This is perfect for any crafty child who loves nature. Threading is an amazing activity for fine motor skill development. This also makes a great travel toy and something to encourage quiet playtime when your toddler begins to drop a nap or is going through a sleep regression.



10. Grimm’s Slimline Cars–Ditch all the plastic and matchbox cars in favor of this adorable gender neutral car and truck set that makes a perfect gift for vehicle loving kids.



11. Kid O Magnatab— A modern day Etch A Sketch that is another must have for quiet play or travel. This encourages kids to draw, create patterns, or practice writing letters or numbers. The little magnetic balls also provide a multi-sensory experience for kids when the push them back into place.



12. Plan Musical Toy Set— This all in one music toy is a perfect way to incorporate music for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. I love this one because it combines multiple instruments into one toy which helps reduce clutter.



13. Cuddle + Kind Doll— Buy a beautiful handmade doll for your little one while also donating 10 meals to children in need. What could be better than that. These whimsical dolls are loved here and with so many adorable choices it will be difficult to choose just one!



14. Maileg doll (pronounced my-lie)- These beautiful heirloom quality dolls are made of natural materials and will make an amazing addition to any doll collection.



15. Ostheimer Wooden Animals— Add of a few of these handmade animals to your gift list. Animal figures are a must have for kids for pretend play. They have some really unique options like a hedgehog, a Bernese mountain dog and a unicorn.