There isn't exactly a shortage of options when it comes to buying gifts for toddlers — which can be the exact problem when you're trying to choose something. That's because most toddlers don't quite understand that the holidays involve selecting a special gift or two, so the decision making is often left to you. Of course, you can always rely on books and puzzles which are a no-fail option for little ones. But if you need some help selecting a certain something amongst the overwhelming number of options, then I've got you covered with the best 2017 gifts for toddlers.
Whether you are looking for a blast from your childhood past with a retro Fisher-Price toy, seeking to build your kid's language knowledge, or simply hoping to buy yourself some time with an activity center, then there is a gift for you. I've even included a cuddly stuffed animal that will not only make your little one smile, but help put food in the bellies of kids in need. And that's a cause worth supporting in my book.
Ready to get started? Break out your paper and pen because buying gifts for a toddler means you get to do the choosing — which is about as much control as you'll see all year with a little one whose learning to exercise their negotiating skills. Relish it.
This Mega Bloks 80-Piece Classic Big Building Bag ($15, Amazon) gets daily use in our household and that's because the creative options are endless. My 2-year-old is known to spend an hour or two building everything from houses to tunnels. Plus, the blocks come in as storage bag which makes for easy cleanup.
From Scout the Deer (above) to Zoe the Unicorn, these hand-knit dolls ($52 to $72, Cuddle + Kind) are simply to cute to pass up this holiday season. Bonus? For each doll purchased, the company provides 10 meals to children in need through their established Giving Partners, such as Children's Hunger Fund. That's a win-win gift in my book.
My nephew has this VTech Touch and Learn Activity Desk Deluxe ($40, Amazon) and, when we visit, it's a constant battle between he and my daughter over who gets to play with it (they usually end up sharing the stool). The interactive desk includes five activity pages packed with lessons about numbers, the alphabet, and colors. The LED display also illustrates letter and number stroke order and how to draw basic shapes.
The Crayola Play 'N Fold 2-in-1 Art Studio Easel ($20, Walmart) is a great option for a toddler who seems to be harboring an inner Picasso. Made from sturdy colorful plastic, the multi-purpose art desk includes a big clip to hold your child's paper while they are painting or drawing, as well as a separate chalkboard space. Storage cups hold supplies such as markers, chalk, crayons, pencils, and paints.
If you have a little one who is learning to walk (or about to), then this Melissa & Doug Deluxe Chomp and Clack Alligator Wooden Push Toy ($37, Amazon) is the perfect gift. The wooden push toy not only encourages movement, but includes interactive touches — like alligators with mouths that open and close — that help develop motor skills.
For the toddler that needs to run out of some of their energy, there's the Fisher-Price Zoom 'N Crawl Monster ($20, Walmart). There are two ways to play — your little one can sit and simply fill the monster's mouth with the balls, or you can turn it on so the monster crawls all around your house, spinning and tumbling out the balls for your child to chase. It also has more than 15 phrases, so your kids will get a big kick out of playing with their new monster friend.
While organized toddler sports are hilarious, they aren't exactly the Olympics. Get your budding athlete up to speed with the Little Tikes 3-in-1 Sports Zone ($40, Walmart). With a chance for your kiddo to practice soccer, basketball, and bowling, they surely won't get bored this winter break. The toy also has over 75 sounds with light-up displays to help them learn their colors, numbers, and shapes.
I know, another giant toy for the house? The good news is, the LeapFrog Scoop & Learn Ice Cream Cart ($40, Target) is more than just a clunky toy. Your child's imagination will explode using the scoop to "scoop" ice cream, pump "syrup," and make all sorts of fancy ice cream sundaes. Plus there are a lot of phrases so your child can learn their colors, counting, and more.
It's hard to find a toddler not obsessed with Paw Patrol, making this Paw Patrol My Size Lookout Tower ($80, Walmart) the perfect gift. Over 2.5 feet tall with a rotating periscope, sounds, and Paw Patrol pups to zoom through the tracks, it's going to be a hit this holiday season.
Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:
Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.