Figuring out what to get a one year old for their birthday is generally a bit of a challenge. They're not really a baby anymore, but yet, they're still not a full-fledged toddler. And if you're like me, you're always in search of toys with staying power, toys that will still be relevant as your child gets older. So this, my friends, is a list of our favorite First Birthday presents - and all of these toys have X and S's stamp of approval. :)
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. Most photos courtesy of Amazon.com.
A ball is such a great gift. Kids can never have too many to play with and they are always fun. Some of our favorite balls are:
and those $2-4 balls at grocery stores and Target (not pictured)
2. Ball Pit and/or Slide
This is one of the absolute favorites at our house, both with our kids, and with their visiting friends. Below is the set-up we had for S until last Christmas. Her Christmas present from us was a big kid super-sized ball pit and slide (you can see it in our Art Room tour if you haven't already). The set-up pictured below has 200 balls.
We love our block sets! There are two different kinds of blocks that would make excellent gifts - large stacking block sets and regular wooden building blocks. The large stacking blocks are so fun to knock over for babies and toddlers and S likes to use them as houses for her "guys" (plastic animal and people figurines) now in imaginary play. The regular wooden building blocks are great for teaching shapes, colors, and for learning how to stack blocks. Both kids use ours basically every day.
So we're admittedly on the ridiculous side and have several swings - including some inside our house (it's really fun to have a swing inside - you should try it!). These are three of X's favorites.
5. Water Table
We use our Water Table all the time! In both winter and summer. If you're not already familiar with water tables, we have a post on Why You Want a Water Table that's worth reading - if not for any reason other than enjoying X's amazing expressions in the post's photos. :)
Yep. A cape is so much fun. For those little ones who are not yet walking/running, the cape is just perfect for Peek-a-Boo, and very shortly thereafter it will become a running cape...and then a beloved dress-up item.
7. Pop-up Tents
We have had this set of pop-up tents for nearly three years now and they still get a lot of love. The best part about them is that they collapse and store SO easily - something that was super necessary when we were really tight on space.
Though X can't actually jump yet, he still loves to practice bouncing on this trampoline. S is a full-fledged giant jumper now, and this trampoline is a great way to burn energy. It also folds and stores really easily if you are tight on space. :)
9. Crayola Color Wonder
These are my favorite art supplies for teaching little ones how to make art. The markers and paints only color on the special Color Wonder paper - so if little ones draw on themselves, the table, the walls...you get the picture...nothing happens! This is great news for your table and walls and it also provides some great positive reinforcement for only drawing on paper. S still enjoys using these now that she's older - she thinks they are magic. They last quite a long time, too!
And just a final thought - all of the toys mentioned above do have great lasting power - meaning that it is often easy to find them in great shape secondhand, either at a consignment shop or via the classifieds. Most of my kids' toys are secondhand and they don't mind at all - but we appreciate the savings!!!!
If you have any favorite first birthday gifts that weren't mentioned above, feel free to leave them in the comments below! :)
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All activities here are activities I feel are safe for my own children. As your child's parents/guardians, you will need to decide what you feel is safe for your family. I always encourage contacting your child's pediatrician for guidance if you are not sure about the safety/age appropriateness of an activity. All activities on this blog are intended to be performed with adult supervision. Appropriate and reasonable caution should be used when activities call for the use of materials that could potentially be harmful, such as scissors, or items that could present a choking risk (small items), or a drowning risk (water activities), and with introducing a new food/ingredient to a child (allergies). Observe caution and safety at all times. The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any of these activities on this blog.