In case you missed it, you may find gift guide number one here: PBF Gift Guide 2019: Under $30
Today’s gift guide features a myriad of kid-friendly gift ideas. Truth be told, this is the gift guide I kept forcing myself to scale back because I had a billion ideas. When it comes to quality gifts for kids, something they’ll use for months and years tops my list, along with gifts that encourage imaginative play, reading and creativity. I also love gifting kids with something they need and the gift ideas below include a bunch of these ideas. Many of the gifts are great for kids of all ages, but since our kids are four and one, many of them likely trend toward the preschool and toddler age groups.
I hope you find something fun for a little one in your life below! And for future reference, you may find many of these gifts and other gift guide recommendations in my Amazon Shop!
PBF Gift Guide 2019: Kids
Chase received his kitchen helper / learning tower stand for his second birthday and 2.5 years later, it’s still one of the most-used items we have in our house. It’s ideal for little ones who want to feel included in kitchen tasks from cooking and baking to washing dishes or even just standing up at the counter! Kitchen helpers are taller and more secure than a stool and many versions can fold up to be tucked away though we’ve never folded ours away since it’s such a staple for our boys. We have this contemporary stand from Guidecraft and I love it because it doesn’t have a “kid-ish” look to it like so many other versions do. Be warned: It seems to go out of stock very quickly, so I’d scoop it up fast if you’re interested in the exact stand that we use for our boys.
Kitchen Helper Stand Favorites: Guidecraft Contemporary Stand (this is the one we have in white but it’s also available in light and dark wood), Side-by-Side Kitchen Helper (perfect for multiple kids), Kitchen Helper with Mesh Keeper + No Slip Mat (comes with some added safety features, great for the younger bunch)
This gift idea is one I absolutely love, as it repurposes a baby’s receiving blanket into a stuffed animal. Since a baby’s receiving blanket tends to be something parents like to keep for the sake of nostalgia but never gets much use after a baby leaves the hospital, this feels like a unique way to turn it into something a toddler or child would love for years to come. I did this for my sister and also for one of my best friends after the birth of her son and they both loved it!
If you are looking for the perfect car entertainment toy for kids, this is it! I ordered this LCD writing doodle board for Chase prior to one of our long haul trips to Florida and it was an instant hit. It entertained him for a LONG time and he loves it for drawing”maps” on road trips, practicing his letters and numbers, taking “notes” about things he sees, drawing pictures, etc.
Memberships or Classes/Lessons
This is one of my favorite gift ideas for children since experience gifts are often the most memorable. Gifting a child lessons to learn how to play a favorite instrument, participate in a sport, dance, etc. is a great way give them something they will enjoy that doesn’t end up in the giveaway pile in a few years. I also love the idea of giving a child a membership to a local children’s museum, zoo, nature center, aquarium, Gymboree, trampoline park, MyGym, etc. so they can get out and explore local hot spots with their family and friends.
Hatch Baby Rest (Sound Machine, Night Light + Okay-to-Wake Alarm In One!)
Let me break this light down for you: It’s a sound machine, night light and okay-to-wake alarm all in one and — get this — you can control the Hatch Baby Rest from your phone. Using the app, you can turn it on and off, change the volume and brightness remotely, alter the “okay to wake” time and set programs every day for a certain sleep schedule. Is that not amazing!?
I initially bought our Hatch Baby Rest for Chase’s room when he began waking up ridiculously early a few days in a row and I needed a solution but he thankfully went back to his normal ways before the light arrived so it went into Ryder’s room when I was nursing since it was the perfect nursing light. It’s now back in Chase’s room and he’s using it as a night light + noise machine combo at the moment. The Hatch Baby Rest is not only attractive and sleek but I think this is such a genius invention because it serves so many different purposes. It’s one of those items I’d tell every new mom to put on their baby registry since it will get years of use.
Talk about a slam dunk gift for boys and girls! When we discovered how much Chase loved using his walkie talkies, they became a go-to gift for me to get for his buddies for their birthdays.
A friend of mine recommended the stomp rocket to me when I was looking for Christmas ideas for Chase a while back and it’s one of those inexpensive gifts that ended up being a HUGE hit. It’s also one of the toys Chase seems to gravitate toward when he has friends over for play dates and they love shooting the soft foam rockets all over our house. Lately Ryder has even been toddling over to it to try to launch rockets!
My mother-in-law gave this star projector light to Chase for Christmas last year and he is still in love with it! He sets it up in his room for “star shows” all the time.
If you’re a regular Things I’m Loving Friday blog reader, you’ve seen this box pop up on the blog a few times before! My mom signed Ryder up for LOVEVERY Play Kits just before his first birthday and I cannot rave about these beautiful baby and toddler toys, books and puzzles enough. LOVEVERY Play Kits are designed by experts (researchers, academics and practitioners in the fields of psychology, development, occupational therapy, and education) and are especially created for a child’s specific learning stages. They’re all about “playtime with a purpose” and use science-backed research to create toys to engage the brains of babies and children in a way that’s both purposeful and age-appropriate.
The play kits contain a research-backed play guide that explain what the toys included in every box do and offer tips and activity ideas for increased bonding with your baby or child. All products in the kits are made with organic cotton, sustainably forested wood and baby-safe plastics and aesthetically I can tell you that they are all absolutely beautiful. I feel like every time one of these kits arrive, I’m texting my mom to tell her how awesome they are and the toys in these play kits are the kind of keepsake toys I’m planning to hold onto for years.
The collection of musical instruments we have in our house are put to use by the boys nearly every single day! Whether they’re playing along to music we’re blasting in our house or creating their own songs or band, I love seeing them make music and only hope their passion for playing with these instruments and dancing translates to a life-long love and appreciation for music. For older kids, there are a lot of great options out there, including this mini acoustic guitar (complete with flashcards to help them learn to play) and this keyboard with light-up keys that can correspond to songs.
We got Chase’s first pair of rain boots in a Stitch Fix delivery and I truly had NO idea just how much he would love them and use them! Any time there is even the slightest drizzle outside, Chase pulls on his rain boots and loves stomping in puddles. A big-time bonus from a parenting perspective: They’re incredibly easy for him to pull on all by himself.
Rain Boot Favorites: Western Chief Rain Boots (So many options — for boys + for girls! Chase has the fire man rain boots + matching fire man rain jacket and loves them both so much!) Hunter Rain Boots (a classic and for good reason!) / Tucker & Tate Puddle Rain Boots / BOGS Skipper Waterproof Rain Boot (we have snow boots made by this brand and the quality is amazing) / Glitter Light Up Rain Boots / Rainbow Light Up Rain Boots
As a parent who spends a lot of time with her kids outside and hopes to instill in her children a love for the outdoors, this kind of a gift is right up my alley! One of our friends bought this outdoor exploration pack for Chase when he came to visit and it was an instant hit. It’s filled with all of the outdoor essentials — a compass, binoculars, magnifying glass, crank flashlight and whistle — and Chase loves packing it up to bring along on walks around our neighborhood or on trails for a special hiking adventure.
Joules Padabout Slippers (aka Quality Slippers That Actually Stay On)
I requested a quality pair of slippers in Chase’s most recent Stitch Fix delivery and they knocked it out of the park! His Joules Padabout slippers were a mega-hit! Not only are they space-themed, but they glow in the dark and are easy to pull on and off. Most importantly, they’re warm and actually stay on his feet since they’re boot-style slippers. The padabout style comes in a variety of prints for both boys and girls and I cannot recommend them enough, especially if you do the whole “new pajamas on Christmas Eve” thing like we do in our house!
Chase received a Plasma Car from my parents for Christmas when he was 2.5 and completely shocked my whole family when he hopped on it and flew around the house! Apparently he had been riding Plasma Cars at preschool for months and we didn’t know it! There’s no denying these Plasma Cars are huge hits with kids of a variety of ages because Chase still rides his all over our house every single day (which you’ve likely seen if you follow my Instagram Stories)! It’s only a matter of time until we get another one for Ryder to chase after him!
We have a subscription to this bi-monthly magazine and our boys love it! They’re both animal-obsessed and every issue of National Geographic Little Kids is packed with fun facts about animals, beautiful photography and simple games. While Ryder loves pointing at the animals over and over again, if you’re looking for optimal engagement, I think this is a magazine best for kids in the 3 to 6-year-old range.
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Additional Kid-Friendly Gift Ideas
- Water Bottle (a great stocking stuffer, especially since this seems to be a commonly lost item for kids — this Thermos one is our favorite)
- BOOKS!!!! (check out this post for recommendations: Favorite Books for Four-Year-Olds)
- Pound-a-Ball Toy (perfect for kids ages 1-2)
- Car Skyway Tower (this thing is a monstrosity but both boys have loved it)
- Play Car Keys
- Puzzle Name Stool (this is one of my favorite gifts to give when children reach potty training age)
- Mini Wagon (because toddlers seem to love dragging stuff all over the place with them)
- Little Tikes 4-in-1 Trike
- Wooden Dog Pull Toy
- LeapFrog Lap Top (I swear this thing helped Chase learn his letters early)
- Space Projection Flashlight
- Power Wheels Jeep
- Floating Fishing Pole
- Strider Bike
- Mega Blocks
- Adjustable Basketball Hoop
- Large Snake Plush Toy
- Take-Along Tool Box
- V-Tech Rock and Bop Music Player (great for car trips!)
- Water WOW! Activity Pads
- Touch & Teach Book
- Bath Bombs
Disclaimer: None of the items in my gift guides are sponsored, however affiliate links are included. Thank you so, so much for your support!