If you need a few ideas for some special occasions presents, such as a birthday or at Christmas time, for your first child or for a grandchild, a niece, or your best friend’s little boy, here are a few suggestions all between 0 and 3 years of age 🙂
I find it quite nice that both my kids were born at the end of the spring, which makes my preferred choice for a birthday present any outdoor related activity. Of course kids need fresh air even during winter, so I am sure those can just do the trick, even if your child was born in autumn or towards the end or the beginning of the year. The good thing is that the gender does not matter: boy or girl, they will have so much fun on those going to the park!
1. From 10 months onwards (£50+): the smart trike
This is a great product for children that are a bit too young to go on a trike on their own and you would probably still carry in their buggy. But when it is a sunny day you can comfortably sit your child in there as they have a protected seat (that you can remove later on when they are able to pedal themselves without falling) whilst you push them in whichever direction you want to go, as you would with the buggy. The only downside is that you will generally need to carry any extra toys, snack or spare change bag, whilst you can usually dump their weight on a pushchair.
2. From 18/24 months onwards (£55+): the mini micro scooter
Who does not know what a mini micro is nowadays? They are everywhere, kids run on those faster than cars! The advantage of introducing a scooter in your child’s life is that it will boost their independence and they will be keener to use it to go by themselves rather than sitting in their buggy and be pushed the whole time. They are also quite light, therefore you can take them both and position the scooter on the pushchair when your child is really tired. They may become so good at it that you may want to introduce the use of an helmet in case they fall off. Initially it’s best to let them use it only once you reach your local park or playground, rather than letting them go on the pavement as well, as they may be too little to understand the road dangers.
3 From 2.5/3 years onwards (£30+): the balance bike
There are many types and brands of this new model of bikes. The wooden ones are a classic, though I personally find them quite heavy to carry if your child for some reason is not going on it (they stop, interested in the flowers, then they want to run after a pigeon, and so on… In the meanwhile you have to carry it and possibly push a sibling’s pram at the same time!). We went for a metallic one, lighter and easier to maneuver for the child as well. They have become so popular lately as apparently (I still have to test that) the child learns very quickly to stay balanced on those, therefore once they will have a normal bike, they won;t even in the rear extra little wheels, they will just have to add the pedaling with the existing balance they acquired beforehand with this one. It’s also a good time to seriously introduce the street rules so that they know never to cross the road without you and that red means they need to stop and so on.
It’s easy to make the kids burn all their energy when you can go to the park, but how to keep the little ones occupied when you have to stay indoor? I personally found those were perfect Christmas presents from yourself as a parent or Santa Claus 😉 Some are gender specific (such as pretend toys, however I provided a version for both 🙂 ) and some will make every child happy in my opinion!
1. First Xmas (£45+): Activity walker
I just loved this one as soon as I saw it as I felt it was the perfect treat for a first Xmas ❤ . Not only they are stimulated by the activities at the front of the walker but as soon as they start making their first steps, they love pushing it to move from a room to another being sturdy and making it easier to walk fast. Any wooden toy would do the trick anyway, from the cubes to the building blocks, depending on your baby’s age as well, I just thought the walker had the extra trick to be used later on as a trolley to push as well 🙂
2. Second Xmas (£40+): Little kitchen
Who out there is still seriously believing that cooking is a girls’ matter only?! I consider really important teaching our kids, boys and girls, that preparing good meals is part of our daily lives, as it means looking well after ourselves rather than shoving something in the microwave 😦 . This is why this was my son’s second Xmas present and he liked it very much (also because he sees his father cooking all the time more than I do, so he identified with him straight away!). However if you do feel that a boy would really not be onto this kind of pretend play, or even if you have a girl who likes a lot learning about the functioning of things for instance, a wooden tool bench would be equally great fun!
3. Third Xmas (£45+): Car garage / Dolls house – Instruments (various prices)
When you get to a child third Xmas, I really think you are hitting an age where they really want to recognize themselves in a specific gender group, which is absolutely fine and normal by this stage. That is why you may not be able to find a present that would be good for both the child you have in mind and let’s say their opposite sex sibling too (though I truly believe kids play with anything they have, so the sibling will take part in it anyway 🙂 ). However if you still want to stay safe, a musical instrument, such as an ukulele, a small piano, a kids xylophone, a tiny drum or a real harmonica will be a guaranteed success!
So good luck with your shopping to find the best deal and the best present at the same time 😉