Christmas Gift Guide

img_1441Christmas is always a special time of year, especially now we have children but one thing I seem to dread is choosing ‘the right’ gift. Getting it right can sometimes be really hard so here’s my gift guide to help you get it right this Christmas.

Tiny Tots

The Jumperoo has made it on to all of my gift guides for babies and for good reason. They are simply brilliant. Over the years, we had two and I loved them both. We’ve tried the The Fisher-Price Roaring Rainforest and Luv U Zoo Jumperoo. There are so many different designs now and although they are quite big, it’s definitely one of the toys that all of the babies I know have really enjoyed. It’s fun and engaging with lights and sounds and it also teaches them about cause and effect. The most recent Roaring Rainforest Jumperoo even folds away! If you’re quick you can get some great deals on this from Amazon. Their Rainforest Jumperoo is currently £69.99.jumperoo

I haven’t met a baby or toddler who doesn’t love these squeaking eggs from TOMY. These have lasted four years in our house now and they and are still played with routinely. We’ve lost and found some of the parts so many times but they really are a must for all babies!eggs

Babies love making noise too so any musical instrument that they can bang and crash would be perfect. Xylophones seem to go down really well and our one from JoJoMamanBebe has lasted a few years and still looks like new.xylophone

How about a bath toy? Both my two love baths but sometimes bath toys are a little samey. Well we have the VTech Bathtime Singing Froggy and it’s by far the best bath toy we’ve purchased. You can sing along to the frog’s tunes into the microphone, learn colours, instrument names and sounds it even has a water spray (just make sure the bottom foot is in the water to ensure it works!).frog

Who could resist the gorgeous duck companion*? He’s made of natural rubber and contains no nasties meaning it’s a perfect stocking filler for your teething tot! Not only does he look irresistibly cute, he also squeaks when pressed adding to the fun in the tub.duck

Or even a new companion? My Best Friend Igglepiggle* is such an adorable cuddly toy with a difference. You can snuggle away with him day or night but he also talks and has moving eyes which close when you lay him down. When laying down, if you press Iggle Piggle’s right hand, he will play one of 4 lullabies and a little light will glow on his chest. Sit him back up and Iggle Piggle will open his eyes and talk to you or read one of three stories. He’s cute, he’s cuddly and he’s also a helping hand at bedtime.iggle-piggle

Toddlers

Some of the items in the Tiny Tots section would be great for toddlers too but for the slightly older toddler, how about a play kitchen or play shop? We got Isabella a shop for Christmas last year and it’s the toy that has been played with the most all year round. There are so many different elements to it that it can become anything your child likes, the possibilities really are endless. We went for this one off of Amazon and although it’s a great size, it’s not the sturdiest of shops. We’ve since seen in the flesh the shops from GLTC and although more expensive, you can definitely tell the difference in the quality. These role play items will last for years and years too so well worth the investment.

Ride ons have always a massive hit in our house too and we have several that would make excellent gifts. The Scuttle Bugs have got to be at the top of my list as they are relatively cheap and easy to store. They are great for both indoors and outdoors and again, last for years.scuttle-bug

With a digger fan in the house, we have ordered a ride on digger this year and hope it lives up to its fab reviews!

If your little one’s love being outside (even in the pouring rain!) why not look at balance bikes? Raleigh have the new Dash* out and it’s the cutest little bike I’ve seen. I know there are many balance bikes on the market from wooden to metal but the Raleigh Dash looks like a more grown up pedal bike so your tot won’t outgrow it. It’s suitable from 18 months (although my 18 month old is ever so slightly too short for it yet) and will grow with your child.

dash

You can move the saddle height as well as adjusting the height of the handlebars which sets this balance bike out against some of the other brands. Its aluminium frame is lightweight and easy to use, even for small children. The aluminium rims ensure the highest of safely as they give an improved surface for breaking. You can even adjust the breaking levers to fit your child’s grasp. While my son loves ‘riding’ on his bike (we have to help him at the moment while his feet can’t reach the floor!) his sister is also loving getting her balance and confidence on it. Because the saddle height is so easy to adjust, they literally take turns in the garden for hours. This is giving Isabella the confidence to ride her pedal bike and Benjamin feels like he’s grown up too. This is going to be a real investment piece and it looks great too.

One of our favourites for toddlers at the moment is the Orange Tree Toys Alphabet Crocodile Puzzle. It is played with every single day and has engaged both the younger and older child. My 19 month old loves simply piecing the puzzle together while my 4 year old has been using it for letter recognition and learning to write her lowercase letters. It’s bright and colourful and is a solid piece.crocodile

Young adventurers

Books are always a brilliant gift. We have so many books that we never get bored. But go one step further and My Kingdom Books* have come up with a great concept. The personalised book can be read as a simple book, but it can also be brought to life with cutting edge technology. All you need to do is download the free app and the characters will literally appear out of the page and come to life. This is such a wonderful concept and has really captured our daughter’s wonder and joy of reading. She has always loved books but this new technology makes reading just a little more special. You want to curl up inside a snuggly reading den and watch the characters come to life. I can’t wait to see if more titles are introduced too.my-kingdom-books

What youngster doesn’t want to see themselves while they’re singing? In a world of selfies, X-Factor and musicals all my daughter seems to do is sing and dance. Well the SelfieMic is absolutely brilliant fun. It’s a selfie stick with a built in microphone and allows your young pop star to record their latest hit. You can lip sync or go full on karaoke this Christmas and it will keep the whole family entertained.selfiemic

Moving away from the techy side and going back to the classics, what about My First Bananagrams*? It’s a wonderful game the whole family can enjoy without the need for batteries! We keep the My First Bananagrams as an upstairs toy and Isabella will often play with it in the morning when we are getting ready for work/school. When we are going to sit down and enjoy some family time, we will bring it down; I just love the versatility of the game. It’s simple concept but multi-purpose means it’s a great stocking filler idea.bananagrams

We love crafting and making things and the Elecrto Dough Kit* seemed like a perfect ‘toy’ to entertain and learn at the same time. The whole concept is great. Your children can learn about electricity and the current being conducted through dough which is great. I really like this product but I think the recommended age starting at 4 is a little young. I say this not because of the concept but because it’s quite fiddly and they need quite a bit of help; if you don’t put the bulbs in the right way, the circuit won’t work and also the crocodile clips are too hard for my daughter to do by herself. I think this would be a great gift for the slightly older child (just be aware that the dough is not included – you have to make it!).dough-kit

Keeping on track with the more hands on theme, if you have a construction mad child, the K’Nex Thrill Rides Electric Inferno* is amazing fun. It does take a few hours to build initially though. Once built is a sturdy (you can move it from room to room) track which is fun to watch the car speed around. For the younger child, the trill of changing the track and adapting it to see how the car can move around it great but lots of adult help will be required. For the older child, they will spend hours building this project and will be able to treat it like a project. You can always add to the track using other K’Nex pieces to add to the challenge! We’ve only recently started to use K’Nex as the minimum recommended age is 7 but Isabella loves  to see what she can create with them. I think she loves it because of the small pieces!thrill-and-rides

If you can get your hands on a Hatchimal, these seem to be the toy of the year! Although I can’t comment on its functionality yet, I know this is at the top of Isabella’s list!hatchimals

The parents

I know I’ve missed out the tween/teen age but that’s because I really don’t have a clue about this age I’m afraid … So, on to the oldies!

Tech items always seem to go down well in my house and Wraps headphones are no different. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t get their headphones in a tangle but Wraps takes the tangle element away and also gives you a funky bracelet. They are cool and stylish wearable tech that both genders would be able to wear. The headphones work well and are perfect for those who aren’t looking for crystal quality. Although the sound is good, it’s not perfect. For the price, they are great and well worth it.wraps

Looking for something that will keep giving all year round? Why not consider a subscription box? There are so many out on the market depending on what you are after but for a general all-rounder (for women!), Pink Parcel* offer you something to cover most bases as well as ensuring you aren’t caught short at your time of the month. Pink Parcel send you different tea, something sweet, beauty products and of course your monthly essentials every month. For just £10.50 a month, your box is jam packed with lovely beauty and lifestyle products that you will enjoy and the best bit is, you’ll get a parcel to unwrap each month!pink-parcel2

For the sporty or fitness fanatic, what about an activity tracker? I know there are so many on the market which have slightly different functionality so it will very much depend on what you are after as to the model but for me, the new Flex 2 would be perfect. It’s slim line, versatile and certainly not ugly!

If you’re into fitness and wellbeing, to compliment a fitness tracker, why not look at something like Terraillon Web Coach Fit*? It uses BodySense technology to give you a full body composition analysis including weight, BMI, body fat,muscle mass,body water and bone mass. It is connected to the Wellness Coach app which can help you monitor long term goals and connects to your smartphone! It’s really accurate and works brilliantly.wcfitn1

Or for those more interested in eating healthily, The NutriTab* connected kitchen scales are brilliant. NutriTab ensures you a long-term tracking of your energy intake and monitors: calories; proteins; carbohydrates; fats; fiber and sodium. You can use the scan function to scan barcodes of more than 40,000 foods and display the energy values ??of those meals. It’s incredibly easy to stay connected and ensure your food intake is keeping you on track.terraillon-nutritab-noire-f

If you’re after something a little more indulgent (it is Christmas after all) why not buy perfume or jewellery? Top of my list would always be Channel No 5. And a piece of unique jewellery. There are so many online companies who can make personalised jewellery that there’s bound to be something you’d like!chanel-5

We always seem to buy each other nice clothes for Christmas too. We spend the whole year buying clothes for the children as they grow so quickly that we often neglect our own wardrobes. This makes good quality clothes and shoes the perfect treat that we wouldn’t get otherwise.

To add some luxury to the table, you could buy a nice bottle of champagne and have it cooled in a giant champagne cork ice bucket*! It’s fantastic quality and will definitely add a unique touch to your dinner parties. I love the quirkiness as well as the quality of this item!champagne-cork-bucket

Disclosure: We were sent items marked with * for the purpose of this review; however, all thoughts and comments are my own.

 

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