In the blink of an eye, my twin boys will be 5 this year right before Christmas. Yes, in our family, December is a hoppin’ time. With 3 of 4 of the family celebrating birthdays AND the excitement of the Christmas season, there is hardly a dull moment. I’m pretty sure my kiddos are already counting down the days, which means I had better start thinking about my yearly conversation with Santa. 😉 This year, my kids are likely to have their own input and wishlists, but in previous years, mom and dad were left to do a lot of the guess work. With that in mind, I thought I would share our Top 10 most used and most beloved toys from ages 2-years-old to 5-years-old.
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1. Step 2 Treehouse Slide – Oh how this slide has been loved. And how it has lasted! Our boys were just going on two when they received this gift I believe. Now, at almost 5, it is still just as used. We do bring it inside in the harsh Chicago winters (bonus, they can burn some of that cooped up energy in the basement) and then it’s back outdoors in the spring. Add a kiddie pool and it also makes a PERFECT mini waterslide for the back yard.
2. Instruments – Disclaimer: Nosie. 😉 If you are prepared to handle the noise, instruments are a great learning toy for the 2-5 range. We are big Music Together fans in our house, so we have loved bringing the music home. Also, mom and dad both grew up in Marching Band and Drum Corps, so we are perhaps not-so-subtly trying to indoctrinate our children to love music, too. We love our Melissa & Doug sets and our Remo kids drums and bongos.
3. LEGO DUPLO Deluxe Train Set – This set is amazing. I 100% love this and so do my kids. It was a joint gift for them when they turned two. At age two, they could push the train around mostly off the track and were just starting to be able to build with some DUPLO pieces. Over the years, they’ve experimented with creating different tracks and have built all sorts of tunnels, cities, and farms. At some point I am excited to maybe upgrade to the LEGO City Cargo Train Set, but I’m not sure they will ever want to part with this favorite.
4. LEGO Sets – From DUPLO, to LEGO Jr., to the “big kid” LEGO sets, we’ve accumulated quite a few LEGO pieces in our home over the last 5 years. Yes, they hurt when you step on them. And, yes, they require some organization know how (still working on this one) but I am a HUGE fan of LEGO products. Watching my boys build and create will never get old. (And how cute is my little guy there last Christmas working on his first “Big Boy” set with his uncle?) 😉
5. The Sandbox (& Water Table) – There is a reason why the sandbox is a classic. We love our Step 2 Naturally Playful Sand and Water Center. This one also come with an umbrella which we use all the time. Well, okay so except in this picture. It was twilight. 😉
5. Shopping Carts and Push Toys – Lets face it. Little kids love to hoard things. And they love to push things. And they don’t necessarily grow out of this phase at say, 2. Or 3 or 4 or 5. Needless to say, in our house, the shopping carts have quite a lot of miles on them. And the Ninja Turtles ride in style. We also love our outdoor pushing lawnmowers and wheelbarrows and they’ve been known to bush a play stroller or two in their day.
7. Bikes – Speaking of things with a lot of mileage on them, let’s talk about bikes. (And helmets!) From three-wheelers, to the very awesome trailer for two (see below), to their first “Big Boy” versions, bikes have been a more than worth while investment in our home. Thankfully we have some good, safe riding areas in our neighborhood and lots of local parks to drive to with bikes strapped to the car rack. I can see as they get older that this might become a great family activity as well.
(Yes, they should have had the helmets on here. Because they totally fell off these a few times even though they are .2 inches from the ground.)
(We did put them in helmets in the bike wagon, too. Mainly for protecting their heads from crashing into each other. It can be a bumpy ride back there!)
8. Puzzles – We are a bit puzzle obsessed around here, but I love how they can grow with the kids. From the wooden Melissa and Doug Puzzles to the giant Floor Puzzles to the more complicated Ravensburger (LOVE these 60, 100, and 200+ piece puzzles!) and other varieties, we rarely have a time where there is not at least one of these in progress on the table. (Or 10 of them covering my floor…)
9. Books – Not sure if books can be classified as a “toy,” but I will classify them as a fantastic gift idea. Whether it’s just a loaner from the library or whether it’s a new one to treasure forever, my boys always love a new book to explore. Check out some of our favorite titles for your little farmers, builders and engineers here:
10. Play House and Kitchen – Yes, I have boys. And, yes, they love (hoarding) and playing in their Step 2 House and with their kitchen set. We keep these inside and they have lasted for 3 years thus far in great shape.
What are some of the best loved toys at your house? Are any of these items on your kids’ wish list for the Christmas Holiday this year? Now, off to Google some ideas for the 5-8 age range, though I’m sure my little ones will have LOTS of ideas for Santa. 😉
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