Small Town Simple

The Simplicity Adventures of a Mother and Daughter

My Top 10 Toddler Items

ToddlerEvery store that is geared towards children would have us, the consumer, believe that we need the latest and greatest items for our baby/child.  It can be very hard to avoid the temptation and spend more than we expected on kids.  Plus, I have found the toddler stage to be a little harder.  They are too young to play with certain things but have outgrown the baby toys.  However, there are a few items that have really proved their worth during this stage.

My Top 10 Toddler Items – this list does not include basic necessities such as food and clothing.

  • Sensory board.  Last year for Christmas, my husband and I made (he did the hard work while I “supervised”) a sensory board for Tater Tot.  We have since added some more items to it and he seems to enjoy it.  I like the flexibility that it offers because we can modify and change pieces as he gets bigger.
  • Sling/carrier.  I jumped on the baby carrier band wagon late, but our sling still comes in handy.  Tater Tot likes to explore but when he is in a new place, he has a tendency to be shy and want to be held.  Our sling allows me to “hold” him, even as a toddler, but I can still be more mobile and it’s easier on my back and shoulders.
  • A set of blocks.  My mom purchased a colorful set of blocks for Tater Tot when he was a lot smaller, but they have been one of the best toys.  He would love when we stacked them and then he could knock them over.  Now, he tries to stack them himself…and then knock them over.  At some point, we will teach the colors and designs on the blocks.  They are easy to pack when we travel and they aren’t noisy (always a plus in my book).
  • Sippy cups.  I truly believe that you don’t need a lot of extra “kitchen” items for a child.  We have a total of 5 sippy cups, but we could easily operate with 4.  The ones we have are easy to clean and easy for Tater Tot to use.
  • Books.  We were fortunate to receive a lot of books prior to Tater Tot’s birth and we haven’t needed to buy many since then.  I have purchased a few more, but he is completely satisfied with the ones he has.  I think every child should be introduced to reading at an early age and it truly makes me sad when so many aren’t.
  • The great outdoors.  Tater Tot loves being outside and exploring.  It never fails to make him happy if we ask if he wants to go outside.  We barely have time to get shoes on.
  • A comfort item at night.  One of my co-workers gave us a toy that plays soft lullaby music.  I think having this item has been critical in Tater Tot’s sleep habits.  He doesn’t like to be rocked before bed or nap time, so this one item provides a cue that it is time for him to sleep.  It has been in his crib, since he started sleeping in his room and we take it with us on trips to have something familiar.
  • A ball.  Such a simple item, but one that Tater Tot loves running around after.  He is all boy and I’m sure at some point that ball will go flying and break something but it’s a lot of fun to watch him master his coordination with it.
  • A grocery cart/highchair cover.  Tater Tot had a real issue with sticking his mouth on everything and the phase isn’t entirely over.  This cover wasn’t just about him sitting in a slightly unsanitary grocery cart, it was a necessity to try to keep his mouth off the grocery cart.  To some, this may seem like a nice extra, but for me it provided a little less worrying about what he was trying (and sometimes succeeding) to put his mouth on.
  • Bath toy – singing frog.  Tater Tot loves bath time.  He really enjoys tossing smaller toys out of the tub and then having us toss them back in.  But, he especially loves his singing frog.  He gets such a kick out of the songs and the water that shoots out (which I sometimes have to dodge sitting by the tub).

These items have all proved their usefulness and fun time and again.  I am sure there are other things out there that I have completely missed out on, but we haven’t noticed and neither has Tater Tot.

What is your top item for your child?  We are always open to suggestions as Tater Tot gets bigger and other toys/items wear out.

xo, Lauren

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