Author Topic: Pick up the right gift for a baby  (Read 1543 times)

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Pick up the right gift for a baby
« on: April 03, 2011, 11:50:59 AM »
Gift Guide for Kids One Year Old
By Teeny Tots



1 Year Old


It's a whole new world once a formerly floor-bound baby can walk because everything in a toddler's domain has to stand up to her exploration. What'll keep her busy: improving her gross motor skills by pushing and pulling wheeled toys everywhere she goes; working on her fine motor skills by putting things, like blocks and activity boxes, together and then taking them apart again; and learning the difference between like and unlike shapes, colors and textures by sorting them into categories and working simple puzzles.


A baby gift is one of the most enjoyable things to purchase, especially when shopping for a sibling, close friend or relative. The arrival of a baby is a time of celebration, joy and excitement, often times...

There are so many different baby care products on the market today that it is almost impossible to decide which ones are best. In the end, the only way to really find out if a product is...


Though toddlers are too young for sophisticated art projects, they'll love experimenting with markers, stickers and dough. Just be sure to buy large items because anything that can fit through an empty toilet paper tube could be a choking hazard for these kids, who explore their world by mouthing everything they can get their hands on.

 Crayons


These come in large sizes for easy handling.

Markers


Large washable markers in bold colors.

Modeling dough


Buy it or make it yourself. Some homemade varieties are edible, too.
Stickers


Use large ones of her favorite character to help decorate a card or gift.

 
Bibs 
Bibs
Clothing


Most toddlers are still in diapers and are still squirmy, so buy clothes that are easy to get on and off.


Bibs

Velcro fasteners are easiest at mealtime but often get hung up on other clothes in the wash. Give the parents a lingerie bag to put this in for the wash cycle.

Coat

This age child is ready for a coat or jacket. For extremely cold temperatures, though, furry fleece sleepers or bunting with a hood and a front zipper still work well as long as the child doesn't have to walk outside.

Diaper "bloomers"

Get them personalized for a special touch. Usually for girls, these come in fanciful lacy varieties.

Dresses

Buy larger sizes for longer wear.

Hair ribbons and bows

Some babies don't grow hair for quite some time, so bows and headbands add a nice little-girl look to bald heads. For babies with very fine hair, many bows are made to stay on the finest strands of hair.

Hats

A floppy sun hat is great for the beach. In winter, make sure the hats cover the ears.

Jeans

A good sturdy jean is great for this age child, who is walking -- and falling.

Mittens

Match coats and hats, if possible.

Overalls

Rugged and sturdy, these are great for new walkers. Look for those with snaps on both legs.

Rompers

Look for snaps on both legs or a zipper that runs down one leg for easy diaper changes. Young kids live in these, and parents just can't get enough of them.

Shoes and socks

Kids learn to walk best barefoot or in socks, so look for skid-proof tabs on the bottom to prevent novice walkers from slipping. Outdoors, they'll need high-quality shoes that fit right. Laces are fine, but Velcro closures will save time and frustration with wiggly feet.

Shorts or pants

Some pants come with snaps, but they're not necessary because pants slip off easily for changes. Look for elastic waistbands in all cases.

Sleepers

Pre-shrunk, 100% cotton is best for all infant clothing. Sleepwear should always be made of flame-retardant fabrics. These also come without the foot covering, which is handy when combining pajamas with socks and shoes. (It happens more often than you might think.)

Snowsuit

For actually taking the child out in the snow, not just to keep her warm. These are lined and waterproof.

Sunglasses with 100% UV protection

Kid size, of course. These are purely for fun and pictures.

Sweater

Knits are very warm and great for cold weather, but if it's for spring or a climate that's temperate year-round, go with cotton for comfort.

Sweatshirt

These are cozier than a sweater, especially during naptime.

T-shirts

Those with logos of favorite sports teams or cities are always a hit. Personalized ones from sisters, aunts or grandmothers make great gifts, too.

Two-piece outfits

Coordinates are often more dressy than rompers and make great special-occasion outfits.

Undershirts

The ones that snap together keep bellies warmer because they don't hike up under clothes. Look for front fasteners for easy dressing and diaper changes.



For the Car

Car items are essential for families whether they're making long trips or running errands. Many toddlers' favorite characters -- from Elmo to Blue to Arthur -- adorn products made for the car.
Car seat heat shield


A cover for the car seat to keep it from getting too hot.
Car seat strap covers


Soft and furry for added comfort. The ones with toys attached are fun, too.
Headrest cushion


These are especially nice on long trips when babies will be sleeping in the car a lot, although many babies take cat naps in the car just running errands.
Organizer


These hook over the back of the front seats. By this age, kids are ready to use the storage pockets for books and toys, and parents still have room for bottles and other necessities.
Pull-down sunshades


For side and back windows. Pick one with a bright character on it for baby's delight.
Seat cover/protector


A sturdy cover placed underneath the car seat to catch spills and keep the car upholstery clean.
Travel toys


Small, portable toys such as rattles and toy bars that attach to car seats.
Sunshades


For side and back windows, these are especially good on long trips when kids might need to sleep in the car. Many of these come with kids' favorite characters printed on them.
Tip : anufacturers sometimes offer coupons toward discount purchases. Keep an eye on your local newspaper or the mail for a sales circular.



Keepsakes
Keepsakes don't have to just sit on a shelf. You can look for those -- like music boxes and piggy banks -- that kids can use now.

Music box


They come with angels, or as carousels, or to commemorate special occasions.
Photo album


Spring for the acid-free paper for a special gift.
Picture frames


Decorated with balloons, boats, bears or ballerinas, these will be put to good use.
Piggy bank


If it's silver, include a cleaning kit for mom and dad.
Quilt


Many can be personalized. Even better, make it yourself.
Silver Items


Rattle, spoon, dishes or dresser set, most of which can be engraved.
Tooth fairy box


She'll always know where her baby teeth are stored.
Tip : A handmade or personal item can be more meaningful than a store-bought item.



For their Room
Furniture makes a great gift because kids this age are just beginning to transition into the "big kid" furniture they'll use for the next five or six years. And you don't have to be extravagant: Check unfinished-furniture and used-furniture stores for great buys.

Bookcase


Something small, just to get started. Make sure this matches the décor of the room.
Closet organizer


Kids love the independence of doing things themselves. A kid-organized closet lets her reach her own clothes and put her own sweaters away. An unusual gift, but one that the child will love having.
Comforter


For children who are already moving out of the crib, something fun and inexpensive adorned with a favorite character will go over well. Inexpensive is the key here because tastes in characters change quickly.
Decorative items


The child's name in wooden letters, for example.
Dresser


Consider the size of the child's bedroom and that the top drawers of tall dressers are harder for kids to get into.
Glow-in-the-dark wall and ceiling stick-ons


Decorate the ceiling with these, then watch the "stars" fill the sky.
Growth chart


If he doesn't already have one of these, now is the time. Decorative wooden ones make great gifts and are portable when families move.
Iron-on wall mural kit


These inexpensive kits allow parents to iron a pattern straight onto the bedroom wall and then simply paint in the lines to create artist-quality murals.
Lamp


Decorative ones that match the child's bedroom theme are great. If you want to go all out, get the ones with a nightlight feature.
Magnetic paint


Allows you to turn the bedroom walls into a magnetic play board.
Mirror


Another useful but unusual gift. If the child has a sliding closet door, consider getting mirrored doors for a two-in-one gift.
Nightlight


These come in many varieties and styles and are small enough to fit on a package or stuff inside a stocking.
Sheets


In winter, a good set of flannel sheets will keep her warm. In summer, 100% cotton breathes for a good night's sleep.
Step stool


For sitting or standing. Many wooden ones can be personalized.
Toddler bed


A good transitional bed for agile children who are climbing out of their cribs or when space is limited. Crib mattresses fit in the frame. Check with parents first before buying this one.
Toddler tables and chairs


Kids love to have their own space. These are great for eating, coloring or entertaining.
Toy chest


If they don't have one yet, this is overdue. Some people prefer bins to toy chests, but anything that holds toys will work.
Wall hangings


Many decorative styles are available; they come in wood and cloth.
Tip : Simple bookcases and toy chests can be made at home.



Multimedia & Music
Toddlers love to make silly sounds, so don't hesitate to give anything that makes music, including simple instruments.

CDs and cassettes


Sing-along songs for the car are great for long trips or for a quick diversion.
Instruments


Drums, tambourines or toy keyboards, for example.
Music box


A keepsake or a toy; kids love music.
Toys that talk or play music


A delight for children this age, who want to push buttons and make things go.
Videos and DVDs


Ideally, with slow-moving images and few words.
Wind-up plush toy


Pull-string or wind-up. Kids love these interactive talking/singing toys.

Safety Products
Newly mobile toddlers are prone to exploring things they shouldn't, so while they might not get an immediate thrill out of a product designed to protect them, it still makes a thoughtful gift for the family. And they'll probably have loads of fun playing with the empty box.

Bath toy temperature gauge


Disguised as a toy, these record the water temperature.
Cabinet and drawer locks


The types that keep the doors and drawers from opening, and closing, give added protection.
Child-proof container caps


These slip over bottles, such as laundry detergent and bleach, to keep young kids out.
Coffee table guard


A soft edging that wraps around the top of the coffee table; found in a variety of sizes.
Door spacer


For kids that are starting to walk and push doors shut, this keeps little fingers from getting smashed.
Electrical outlet covers


At this age, still a gift for mom and dad. Every unused socket in the house should have one of these in it.
Fireplace guard


For elevated brick fireplaces, a soft wrap to place over the brick edge. Often found in modular pieces that fit end to end.
First-aid kit


Either for the home, or something small for the car or diaper bag.
Safety gate


If the family doesn't have one yet, this makes a great big play yard out of one room and keeps curious toddlers out of harm's way. Great for separating animals from kids, too.
Sliding door guard


Keeps doors from sliding shut on small fingers.
Stove guard


Keeps fingers away from hot burners.
Thermometer


Many parents like ear thermometers, but rectal models are more accurate with high fevers. Digital models is easier to read.

Toys & Books
Once 1-year-olds are literally up and running, the great outdoors and outdoor toys provide endless fun. Make a book special by writing a personal note on the inside cover; make sure to include the date and occasion.

Bath Toys
Bath books


A great distraction during hair and ear washings.
Bath puppets


A washcloth that doubles as a puppet.
Floating toys


Balls, boats, rubber toys, nesting cups and sponges. Make sure these are age-appropriate.
Suction-cup toys


Kids love learning how the suction works. Some are larger with lots of bells and whistles and hang on the inside of the tub wall.
Waterworks


A floating structure with features such as wells, a paddle wheel and a squirter. Great for water experiments in the bathtub.
Outdoor Toys
Balls and bats


Offered in a variety of toddler-size models.
Ride-on toys


Scooters without pedals for early riders.
Sand box


Consider the size of the yard, and be sure to get one with a cover for rainy days.
Shovel and pail


The true beach and pool toys. It's best to have a separate set from the bath toys because the outdoor variety get pretty dirty.
Swimming pool


Keep the size of the yard in mind. For smaller areas, inflatable styles are nice, though the hard plastic models stand up more to wear and tear.
Swing set


Need considerable space for these in the yard.
Toddler-size play gyms


A set of tubes or squares; many have slides.
Wagon


The classic gauge steel red wagon is always a hit, but these also come in plastic and a variety of styles.
Travel Toys
Activity books


Look in the mirror on one page, lace the shoe on the next, snap the snap on the next. These are great fun and travel well.
Attachable rattles and teethers


The smaller variety of attachable toy; it's easy to stow in diaper bags and pull out when needed.
Attachable stroller and car seat bars


Losing a favorite toy causes distress for both baby and parent and wastes time combing the park, sand and streets. These attachable activity toys provide hours of worry-free enjoyment.
Books


Small, sturdy board books are best for cars and travel.
Linking rings


Not only a fun toy, but a good skill-builder.
Suction-cup toys


Perfect for windows and restaurant tables.
More Toys
Balls and soft toys


They squeak, jingle, or crinkle.
Beanbag toys


Check to be sure that these are safe for children younger than 3 years old.
Blocks and other building toys


Come in a large variety of sizes, from hand-held wooden blocks to floor-size plastic building squares to soft plush blocks.
Crib toys


Tie-on mirrors and activity centers, for example.
Dolls


Best to get baby dolls as opposed to the 12-inch fashion doll, which includes parts that are too small for children this age. Soft centers are nice for cuddling.
Multi-activity centers


Either a flat toy or a table, these include a variety of dials and buttons.
Nesting cups


A great developmental toy, kids can either nest these together or build tall towers.
Pop-up toys


Jack-in-the-box was the original, but there are many of these now with multiple pop-up surprises.
Push and pull toys


New walkers like to use the push toys for balance. Strings should be cut to 12 inches or less on pull toys.
Puzzles


With five or fewer easy-to-grasp pieces.
Sorting toys


Such as a wooden board with inserts for circles, squares, triangles and rectangles.
Stacking rings


A classic tapered cone with multicolored rings. No home is complete without this one.
Stuffed animals


Make sure they're safe for children younger than 3 years old.
Teethers


The larger teeth are coming in, and the baby teethers are probably shredded by now. It's time for a new, sturdier set.
Train sets


Toddler-size train sets or just vehicles such as cars, trucks, dumpsters and planes.
Books
Especially good for this age: board books that are made to withstand rough handling, simple rhyming books and those with textures and movable pieces.

Activity books


Look in the mirror on one page, lace the shoe on the next, snap the snap on the next. These are great fun and travel well.
Board books


Perfect for little hands to handle.
Cloth books


Great for reading and chewing. These can usually be washed with the family laundry.
Electronic books that make sounds


A great combination of book and music.
Fairy tales


These are the stories you grew up with - Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen and Aesop -- though there are many other collections.
Nursery rhymes


For moms and dads to read aloud and begin memorizing.
Picture books


These are the lifeblood of books for young children. Large pictures with few words.
Pop-up books


You might want to get two of these; they get torn easily.
Pull-tab action books


A child's first interactive book.

Tip #1 : School supply stores have great toys and books and are often open to the public.

Tip #2 : Check kids catalog companies for personalized gifts, such as doctor kits, pencil boxes or overnight bags.


Nusrat Jahan
Assistant Professor
Department of English
Daffodil International University