August 9, 2011

Baby Toys: All You Need is Four!

Posted in Water Droplets tagged , at 12:35 am by Tamara

I’m determined to keep the toy situation from becoming out of control.  I don’t know if I’m going to be able to do it, because baby toys are so cute, and it’s so fun to give him things, and….  But clutter stresses me out, and I would really rather have a few great, quality toys that Berean loves than a million cheap ones he doesn’t play with, so I’m determined to try!  We all know we only really played with a couple of our toys as kids, anyway.  Of course, it’s much easier to keep a handle on it right now when he has no idea what toys he has!  Haha!  But for the time being I’ve found four baby toys that cover all the bases, are safe and well-made, Berean loves, and I love too.

1.   Freddie the Firefly.  This was the first toy Berean showed an interest in, and it’s great for when babies are just getting interested in toys but don’t have a lot of coordination.  It’s easy to hold and has fabric in the wings that makes a crinkle noise, which he finds fascinating.  Now that he’s older he’s getting interested in all the different textures — it has parts that are silky, fuzzy, ribbed, knotted, knitted, etc.  He’s fascinated by the contrasting colors—the front is colorful and the back is a bold black and white pattern.  It also has a mirror, teeter toy, clinking rings, and a squeaker.

I think it’s a beautiful toy. Maybe I’m silly, but I’m really affected by atmosphere/ambiance and it makes me feel stressed to be surrounded by kid’s toys that are garish and clashing.  This one is bright and cheerful and the colors are gradated so they coordinate really nicely.  And, last but not least, I’ve also read that Lamaze is committed to not using PVC in their toys, which is great.

2.  The Skwish.  It seemed like every family I babysat for as a teenager had one of these, and I was just as mesmerized by it as the kids!  The black strings are elastic, so you can squish and pull on it and it springs back into its original shape.  The balls on the rods slide so as you turn it it’s like looking at a kaleidoscope and it makes a gentle clinking sound.  It is very lightweight and easy to grasp, so great for helping develop motor skills.  I can just see the neurons firing when he’s playing with it and watching it move!  Manhattan Toys says that all their Skiwsh varieties are made with replenishable rubberwood with a water based, non-toxic finish.

3.  Sophie the Giraffe.  When Berean started gnawing on everything I got one of those circle gel-filled teethers.  Not only was he totally uninterested in it, but he seemed to have a hard time holding it, and even though the packaging said it was non-toxic I was a little unsure.  I kept thinking they needed a stick-shaped teether so he could easily get it in his mouth.  Voila!  A giraffe!  I was a little surprised how pricy it was ($20), but it got great reviews (4.5 stars on over 1,300 reviews!) so I gave it a try, and Rean loves it.  It squeaks, and Rean loves to fling it around and make it squeak as much as he likes to chew on it.  It’s made of all natural rubber (from a tree) and food paint—no harmful chemicals.  Again, I’d rather have one expensive but safe chew toy he loves than a lot of cheap ones I’m not sure about.

4.  Blankie Bear.  Rean loves to cuddle this when he’s falling asleep in his swing.  The bear is snuggly, he loves to chew on the fur on the edge, and the underside is cool satin.  If I put a stuffed animal in his lap it rolls off as soon as he moves, but the blankie part of this keeps it in his lap.  I wouldn’t put it (or any loose blanket) in his crib, but it’s great for when he’s in his swing or high chair.  I got this as a gift and couldn’t find a link to the exact one, but I love the look of the Pooh Bear one in the link!

With these four toys you have something soft and textured, something hard with movable parts, something chewable, and something soft and snuggleable.  All your bases covered in four toys!

So, what are your favorite baby toys, and what would you recommend for when he’s a toddler (and beyond!)?



  1. Both our kids LOVED that first toy. Entertained Alaena for many long road trips :)

  2. For when he is a toddler I would recommend Geo Trax trains. Bobby loved them….they are tons of fun and the kids can put them together on their own. No small pieces. Dean and Bobby could sit on the floor for hours making “Bobby’s World”. I have to say also fisher price little people, he had those from the beginning and we loved all of those too.

  3. Mom said,

    Snap blocks!

  4. […] = ''; } Six Month Stats!Lamaze Gardenbug Wrist Wrattles and Foot FindersBaby Toys: All You Need is Four! #mm-link-gen { width: 99%; margin: 20px auto 0px auto; text-align: center; } #mm-link-gen […]

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