What’s under the tree for a toddler whose mum has a toy shop?

As most readers know this blog is a mix of personal posts and business, play related posts. Regular readers will know we are not putting up any decoration this year as we will be moving shortly after Christmas and starting to box up. Nevertheless like any parent I am thinking of what to get our own little one and how to make sure our gifts resemble my values, without everything being from The Toadstool as she would point to it and just go “Mummy’s shop”. So here I will blog what Santa will bring to our house. However before doing so I wanted to ask you the following:

I see many many bloggers blogging their top suggestions for Childrens’ gifts but I am finding it a bit akward, as a shop obviously it’s lovely to be featured, but we go and offer ourselves to be included. So how genuine are these lists? Are they an assembly of what the blogger received free of charge, or are they toys the bloggers actually really really wanted and choose themselves? Do they recommend toys which they have reviewed over the passed year and have enjoyed to their readers or are these already forgotten?

Most parent bloggers will have seen our Christmas competition already where bloggers make 1 blogpost with their own choices from The Toadstool. For The Toadstool I have used all the information from their preferences and our own sales data to compile children Christmas gift guides for each age group, and we suggest why they are good for a certain age on educational level.

Most of the top toys in the category above, our little one already has and I definitely recommend them. But here is what we are adding for Christmas.

1. Lilliputiens Red Riding Hood + matching books


Very Little Red Riding Hood is a non conventional and not scary version of the story. A very determined toddler on her way to have cakes and tea with Grandma and nothing can stop her. It’s different to the regular story as you can see from the pictures below.



So I also wanted a more classic version but with gorgeous drawings, and was very please to find it here . It’s an absolutely stunning version as you can see below and I am going back to the site to purchase The Princess on The Pea to go with our Haba Sleepy Princess Game.


2. Robot Jig Saw

She is loving her 3D box Horse Stable and Barn Puzzle so she will get another addition The Robot Puzzle


3. Numbers and Letters

The Alpha Block book is rather gorgeous and I found it at the Tate Modern, but it is also available here: Alphablock
IMG_1472 IMG_1474 IMG_1475 IMG_1476

I am very excited about giving her this book as she is really drawn to letters recently. She will most likely* be getting the Plan Toys Alphabet so she can compare letters with the book. * I am waiting for the review of Edspire, who got me very excited about as she mentioned the idea of a letter hunt.  I love how she has so many play ideas and I think the wooden blocks actually are much for suitable for outdoor letter hunts then printed or cardboard alternatives!

4. Doll ?

Chloe has a lovely wooden doll pram which she got last Christmas, but no doll of her own yet. She has a soft hand sewn doll which I got when I was about 7. The quality of the hand sewn Waldorf doll made by a mum of a friend of mine, is still immaculate as to stitching etc, however there was some decoloration of her face from natural day light. Still doubting on the doll, what do you think? As you can see the sturdy pram is being put to good use, doll or no doll!



5. Stacking Tree and or sheep?

I am very tempted to also go for the Plan Toys Stacking Tree and give it her for Saint Nicholas on December 6th, just so we at least have one festive decoration at the house.

6. For imaginative play:

I could not resist getting her the Brio Monorail, but as much as she loves trains, I think she might be a bit to young for it and it might be a bit more for Mummy! I am pretty certain that from now on, every birthday or Christmas will involve a train set. I am hoping to make a really nice train play section in our playroom  once we move to the new house. IMG_0342

7. For Motor skills and concentration:

I loooovvved domino’s as a kid, I remember doing it over and over and over again. A while ago I had a late night testing play with box that arrived seriously damaged. When little miss woke up and I was surprised she took so well to them. The blocks are good size for toddler hands, and she was able to put quite a few in a row already!

So she’ll be getting domino’s in a not so nice looking box.


I am hoping to organise a Domino #ToadTest for Domino Day 2014, which is apparently only a big thing in Belgium and the Netherlands: an annual attempt to break world records. But I just see they might cancel it? eek!





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