14 First Birthday Gift Ideas

What to put on your little one’s birthday or Christmas list

So, you’re nearing the one year mark since you’ve kept a little human alive. Yay you!! Now everyone is asking for gift ideas and you’re like, “uhhh I don’t know??”

Your time with a baby is coming to an end and you have no idea what to gift a toddler.

So here you go, 14 things my kids (and their friends) loved between the 12-24 month age range.

1. Laugh and Learn Car

This has by far been the favourite for this age range (and even a bit younger and older too). You may think it looks silly because the car doesn’t actually move, but the kids LOVE it! Every kid who comes over to our house hops right into this car.

2. Ride on Car

While we’re on the topic of cars. A ride on car is another favourite. I know it may seem silly having both, but they each get SO much use in our house. We actually have two ride on cars plus the laugh and learn car!! I’m so happy to have them all.

3. Water Table

Sure, you could set up a bucket of water with some scoops and funnels for water play – but a water table is so handy. We keep ours on our covered deck and the kids play with it year round. If you’re planning on keeping yours out in the elements, consider one with a lid.

4. Bath Toys

Keeping to the water theme here, bath toys. Get bath toys like these, that aren’t going to get moldy. Remember any squeaky toys that take water in, are going to build up mold eventually. I keep these in the bath along with some cups and bowls I can easily wash.

5. Sand Toys

Sand toys are a definite must for a young toddler. My little one loves scoops and buckets, my big one loves watering cans and trucks. I like this kit because it has everything. I also have dollar store sand toys I keep in my car and don’t mind losing for last minute beach and park trips. If you have a big kid to run after at the playground, bringing a rake, shovel and bucket for the little one works so well to keep them occupied and in one place.

6. Egg Toy

My little one LOVES this toy. She spends so long taking apart and putting together these eggs. I keep it in her room though because there’s lots of pieces that can come loose and get lost.

7. Outdoor Picnic Table

I got this picnic table (without the umbrella) secondhand and we’ve used it WAY more than I thought we would. It’s been so handy for eating outside and play dates.

8. Shape Sorter

Both my kids liked this toy but for different reasons. The big kid would launch all the pieces across the room and the little kid carefully figures out the shapes and uses the toy for its actual purpose. HA.

9. Little Chair

My kids love their little chairs. They sit on them to read books or lounge. In the little girlie’s room I put her chair in the corner with some blankets, pillows and stuffies and she loves cuddling up in that area.

10. Foam Climbing Blocks

These are a bigger investment but have been SO worth it. The kids love climbing and running on them. I like how they can use these in so many different ways.

11. Slide

I got this slide used and my kids use it SO much. It’s a perfect size for the younger toddler. If you’re nervous about kiddo falling, then set it up on foam blocks or outside on the grass. But you’ll be surprised how quickly they figure it out!!

12. Musical Instruments

Every morning with the kids we do a little music time. We get out these instruments and sing a few songs before they do their independent play time. I know there are cheaper ones out there but these instruments are super sturdy and sound like the real thing!

13. Balls

In my opinion, every kid needs a set of balls they can throw around! I bought a few stainless steel bowls that I set up with these balls and the girlie will put the balls inside the bowls and throw them all around. Such a great, simple activity.

14. Summer Hat

And to finish off the list, something practical of course. We have one of these hats in every size from baby to kid! My 16 month old is currently wearing a small and my 3 year old is wearing a medium. I love these hats so much. I feel so much better in the hot sun knowing their little faces and necks are protected.

Anything not on this list that your young toddler loves or uses often? Would love to hear it!

Written by Alex Turner