Our kids have received many toys over the years and it’s no surprise that we’re at a point where we genuinely don’t want to see another one coming through our door.
Family members think we’re just being modest when we tell them our boys don’t need anything. We don’t say this because we give them everything they need, but in fact, they have pretty much everything they could ever need or want.
We’re fortunate to have family and friends who care about our little ones and even our pup, but there are way too many toys that have accumulated in our kids’ playroom that we’ve considered donating more than half.
Things To Look For When Buying Toys For Someone
Purchasing toys for kids might sometimes feel overwhelming. For the most part, people choose products that the child enjoys, like a character from their favorite movie.
We have done this before, and often regret it by the next day. What happens when you do this is that the child won’t appreciate the gift for what it is. They will want the next thing with the same character, no matter how silly of a toy it might be.
Although buying toys of a character from a beloved film might seem like a no-brainer, it’s not always a well thought out purchase.
Below are 7 things to consider when purchasing toys for someone:
1. Make sure it is age-approriate.
The first time we purchased a LEGO set was when our oldest was two. It was DUPLO size and he could manipulate the big pieces with his hands. We made sure to watch him while he played with it. Around the time his brother started crawling, someone decided a huge box of LEGO pieces was the best gift for our boys.
Although it did come in handy the following years, it wasn’t age-appropriate at the time. Could you imagine the choking hazard for our boys? Not cool.
2. Avoid loud toys or ones without the off switch.
We joke that whenever someone brings a loud toy or one that doesn’t turn off, that person must hate us. It may not be the case, but the fact that the toy will go off throughout the day more than you can count is enough to think this.
Giving someone a noisy toy can cause unnecessary added stress. We should know, we’ve tried blocking out the sound of our son’s new Buzz Lightyear toy his uncle gave him for his birthday.
3. Avoid buying toys with toxic materials.
You never want to hurt the gift recipient. Toys that are poorly made often cause more harm than good. Be wary of these types of chemicals.
4. Go for toys that inspire their creativity.
We love LEGO products and always encourage family and friends to stick with LEGO when they need a gift. Regardless of age or gender, LEGO toys make the best gift for kids. They won’t outgrow them right away.
5. Make sure the toy encourages learning.
There’s nothing more exciting for a parent than knowing the product their child will be using is also educational. There are a number of items on the market that do just that. Leapfrog has a great line of inexpensive products to choose from on Amazon.
6. Find products that promote physical activity.
Whether you’re dancing around with Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) or simply burning calories with ZUMBA, it’s important to look for products that get the body moving.
Kids don’t always get to step outside or run around the yard as we did growing up. It’s a good idea to encourage them to stay active.
7. Think of products that will grow with your child.
Multi-functional products are a great idea when deciding on what to buy for a child. Radio Flyer has a number of products that function
Buying Toys That Make A Difference
Although we’ve received several items over the years, there are a handful of toys we’ve purchased that we don’t regret adding to their collection. Most of these toys have come in handy with our second kid and other kids who visit.
I’ve listed five of them below, along with the ways they’ve helped our boys:
This toy was our oldest son’s favorite when he was just months old. We’ve even purchased it for family and friends who complain about their baby’s teething problems. It can be thrown in the washer and dryer and looks brand new every time!
2. Little Tikes Easy Score Soccer Set
The soccer set comes with a ball, the net, and a pump. We left the ball behind during a trip to New Jersey to visit family. That was the least of our worries since we had other soccer balls to play with. Having a pump has helped with other balls and even with our jogger, which requires air from time to time.
What we love most about this toy is how it’s taught our eldest about hand and eye coordination. He has such a great handle on the soccer ball as well. We will admit that even adults have played with this set.
3. Mercedes-Benz G55 Kids 12V Electric Ride On Toy Truck w/ Parent Remote Control – Black
(no longer available – try this alternative)
Buying this truck was pretty expensive, probably the most expensive toy we’ve purchased our boys. But the smile on our kid’s face when he first saw it was priceless.
We got ours for about $380 a few years ago. Putting it together was a breeze, but if you need instructions, you’re out of luck. They came in a foreign language.
This toy has helped improve our oldest’s sense of direction and how to navigate his way through pretty much anything. You can control the truck through a parent controller, or you can allow your little one to drive freely. It’s up to you.
By purchasing this controller, we saved ourselves the headache of losing the ones for our TVs. Our little ones love exploring things around the house, but we don’t need them losing or damaging the controllers. Or anything else with buttons.
Having foam mats in their play area has allowed us to breathe a little while the boys entertain themselves. With foam mats, they’re less likely to get hurt when exploring the world around them. Just be sure to keep them clean. They can get messy with little ones.