Toddler Christmas Gift Guide 2016

Father Christmases feet and legs as he lays presents under a Christmas tree
I LOVE Christmas! It is my favourite day of the year (now tied with J’s birthday). I love all the build up… the lights, the shop windows, the advent calendars, the smell of roasted chestnuts, visiting Hamley’s, wondering around the garden centres Christmas sections, chocolate, advent calendars, Christingle, Christmas Carols… you get the idea! I LOVE it all! I have a lot of Christmas traditions which really help to get me in the spirit of Christmas, one of the first being looking through all the big shops Christmas Gift Guides for inspiration of the perfect present for family and friends. So as a blogger when I realised I could make my own and people (admittedly not many) would read it I got very excited! This guide is all about the little ones.

 

So what should you buy for your Toddler for Christmas?

Here are my Toddler Christmas Gift recommendations just for you…

 Toddler Christmas Ice skating Father Christmas
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Review – Message in a Bottle

Message in a Bottel front cover of book with Kiki sat on the bottle in the ocean

When I was a child I loved reading! I remember going to the library at least once a week and it is a passion that has never ceased (although I certainly don’t have as much time to read as I once did!!) When I found out I was pregnant I couldn’t wait to buy books so I could sit snuggled up with my son reading and looking at picture books. Once J arrived, I didn’t wait long; we were looking at books together before he was two months old. When I was asked to be a member of the Message in a Bottle launch team I was thrilled as it meant I would get to review the book once it was released as well as see the journey it took to getting published.

 

 Message in a Bottle

Message in a Bottle tells the story of Kiki, a Scarlet Hawaiian Honeycreeper, who really wants to go on an adventure. She finds a bottle washed up on the beach with a message inside. Since you can personalise this book the message is addressed to your child. In a spontaneous moment of bravery, Kiki decides to deliver the message to it’s rightful owner and off she flies into the unknown. Message in a Bottle charts her adventure and the wonderful creatures she meets along the way, from the highly sprung sailfish to the cheeky monkeys. It isn’t all plain sailing for Kiki but she makes it in the end to deliver your chosen message to your loved one.

Message in a Bottle promo photo of owl cuddling Kiki to keep her warm at night

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How to entertain your child while you are ill

Orange jelly in a clear plastic bowl with 6 black plastic spiders and a plastic spoon.
What do you do to keep the little ones entertained while you are ill?

 

I am quite a chatterbox, so am regularly verbalising play, chatting about what we can see as we drive along in the car, singing songs and reading books to J. However, when illness strikes in the form of Laryngitus and steals my voice away what do we do then?! It isn’t the first time I’ve had Laryngitus, but it is especially inconvenient when it arrives just as my mum has gone on a 2 week holiday and hubby is away for the weekend! I couldn’t leave the house and had no voice to talk to J.

 

I had to be creative, so I decided to drop the baking and painting I had planned (far too much exertion required by me) and create some simple but enjoyable activities instead. Some of these are Halloween themed since it was that time of year, but they are easily adaptable to suit other themes/seasons.
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Montessori style activities to do at home

Montessori activity - girl pegging miniature clothes on a miniature clothes peg

Montessori has come to my attention a lot recently through my cousins home schooling ethos and my own research into the theory behind the education.  I am therefore delighted to be hosting this post by Emma Lawson suggesting ideas of how to incorporate Montessori style activities into your daily routine with your child(ren).

 

The Montessori approach to learning is envisaged in such a way that a child is well prepared for lifelong learning. Getting the most out of one’s education entails a lot of diligence and it is best to start preparing kids as early as possible. There are numerous activities that stem from the Montessori approach, which can be used at home so as to advance your child’s learning.

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Best Books for a 1 year old

Books for a 1 year old

To celebrate World Book Day, I have compiled a list of  J’s 15 favourite books.  J loves to read!  We spend more time reading to him than he plays with toys.  When we aren’t reading to him he likes to look at the pictures himself.  J particularly loves animals and lift the flap books as well as books that make a noise and he enjoys sharing his food and drink with the animals in the books.  J’s love of reading means that we need plenty of reading material (partly to stop me getting bored!) so I have combed libraries, preloved baby sales, car boot sales and bookshops looking for the best books for him and these are his favourites.

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