“What do you buy a one year old? Seriously. What the actual heck do you get for them?”
If these words seem familiar then you may have read them in my first ever blog post where I revealed that there was less than eight days to Roo’s first birthday, and I had no clue about what gifts to get her. Well it was Roo’s big-girl-number-one birthday last weekend. And yes – before you start to panic – she did have some presents to open. The only thing I remembered about GinGin’s first birthday was that we went massively overboard with the amount of stuff we got for her. I mean it took her two days to open them all. TWO DAYS! I was determined we wouldn’t make that mistake again.
Roo managed to open all her presents in just one day. She did have a fair bit of help from an over-excited GinGin, who I thought was going to quite literally burst at the sight of all those beautifully wrapped surprises. Roo had very thoughtfully bought and wrapped two special gifts for GinGin, and gushed about her being the best big sister ever on the tags. (Quite impressive for a baby LOL!) Those little pressies did make GinGin feel special. But they were ripped open in under 5 seconds, and soon enough my big girl was hovering over Roo’s pile of birthday presents like some greedy seagull eyeing your tray of steaming hot chips at the seaside.
(Just a quick side note: don’t buy expensive wrapping paper for kids’ presents. It’s too thick for them to rip into quickly. Get the cheap stuff that tears as soon as you look at it. Much easier for little fingers! Sadly I forgot this fundamental rule of parenting which extended GinGin’s agony as her baby sister failed to open all her presents at lightening speed…)
We did go slightly over-the-top with the amount of presents we bought. I say we. Here I clearly mean the “royal we” as Roo’s daddy was as clueless as her about what was hidden beneath that heart pattern paper. I’m being slightly unfair. He knew a couple of them. And I did have more time to think about, locate, buy and wrap them. So I am mostly responsible for all the extra stuff we now need to find a home for. (Did I really just admit to that? … Sssshhh … don’t tell anyone because obviously nothing is ever my fault!)
Anyway, I think Roo would have been happy enough with a balloon, some wrapping paper and something to bang. She paid far more attention to these things to begin with, tossing presents aside to fiddle with ribbon or rustle paper. She chased balloons around like a little dog all morning. Eventually, though, she opened all her gifts. And now she’s had a week to play with them I can say with some certainty which are her favourites – and which ones GinGin likes best too!
So here’s my 5 top picks of Roo’s pressies:
5. Little Tikes Push-Down Jungle Cars
These are brilliant! You can’t just have one, though. You need two. Because obviously how else can you race against each other after the kids have gone to bed? The girls love them too. Little Roo’s face lights up when I push down the lion or elephant and make car noises as the toy zooms off across the kitchen floor. It makes her giggle. And oh my gosh I love the sound of that giggle. (I must record it before her laugh changes.) The cars also get Roo moving around – not that she needs much motivation to crawl off at high speed, usually towards the stairs – but it can only be a good thing for a toy to encourage babies to crawl.
4. Ravensburger Jolly Dinos Jigsaw Puzzles
Puzzles are a winner in our house. GinGin has loads and loads of puzzles. She has board games made from puzzles. She has books where the pictures are made from puzzles. She has a “Where’s Wally” puzzle that she managed to finish with a bit of help from mummy and daddy. So this box of four puzzles with funny, bright and colourful dinosaurs is sure to keep Roo entertained for a good while yet. And the real winner is that it’s another thing both girls will play with together. It doesn’t matter that one of the puzzles is just two pieces, GinGin will enjoy showing Roo how to complete it. Maybe one day Roo will help her finish their daddy’s impossible Minions puzzle – daddy will never do it himself *laughs*.
3. Peter Rabbit Pull-Along and Jemima Puddleduck Xylophone from Orange Tree Toys
Mum and me found these in the cutest little shop in St Ives called Ruby Doobies. Roo’s real name is Ruby: we had to go in! And oh my gosh I’m so happy we did. There were so many brilliant toys, and I totally fell in love with these. I’d been thinking about getting a pull-along toy and this wooden Peter Rabbit is just perfect. The xylophone was another super find. We’d been staying in a holiday cottage where the owners had provided toys for kids to play with. The toy Roo was most taken with was a crocodile xylophone. BINGO! It was like we were meant to find this beautiful little wooden instrument. It’s one of Roo’s most fave things right now.
2. VTech Toot-Toot Drivers Amusement Park
I confess that this is the one and only thing we’d got Roo well in advance of her birthday. We got it for a ridiculously fab price because sadly Toys “R” Us was closing down. I felt quite smug when we bought it all those weeks ago because, obviously, I was so super-organised *laughs.* I’d not, however, factored in how bloody big it is. Seriously this thing needs its own room! Size really doesn’t matter, though, because both GinGin and Roo play with this. Together and separately. I mean this thing is now GinGin’s most favourite toy out of our massive collection of toys. (Not joking when I say we could compete with Argos in the toy department *eyes roll*) I’m not gonna lie when I say I probs won’t be buying any more Toot-Toot stuff, because we just can’t afford to buy a bigger house to put it in. But I’m super-happy we got this for Roo. She’s all over it. Using it to stand. Pulling at the pully bits. Pushing on the pushy bits. Laughing at the flying bits. And she carries the little car round with her like her most prized possession. It’s definitely a winner.
1. Flamingo SmarTrike
Remember in my first ever blog post when I said I only had one good idea for a present and I’d given that to my mum. Well, here is that idea. The SmarTrike. And oh my word it was such a brilliant idea! So nana & grandad got Roo the best present for her first birthday. Roo loves it. I mean she really, really LOVES IT! Her little face was overjoyed when she saw daddy putting together this pink and black Flamingo adorned tricycle. She was intrigued. Curious. She knew it was special. When we sat her in it for the first time, she giggled. A lot. She clapped. A lot. She squealed. A lot. She pointed. A lot. She was like a teeny-tiny Miss Daisy, pointing to the way she wanted to go. GinGin had almost as much fun pushing her round our house, remembering her own SmarTrike adventures and putting her own small toys in the little compartment on the back of the trike. When Roo isn’t in the tricycle we can almost certainly find her next to it. Touching the peddles. Opening and closing the trunk. Pulling herself up so she’s standing next to it. Pushing the wheels back and forward. It’s most definitely, without a doubt, her most favourite big-girl-number-one birthday present.
So there you have it. My 5 top picks of Roo’s first birthday gifts. If you’re stuck for ideas then you can’t go wrong with any (or all) of these. I feel I should mention that this is not a sponsored post. There are affiliate links within this article and so as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. However, I added the links months after Roo’s birthday – it really is my list of great gift ideas for a baby’s first birthday. And, I think you’ll agree, these could be equally suitable for a baby boy too (the trike comes in other colours if you don’t fancy pink).
I hope this helps if you’re stuck for baby gift ideas 🙂 xx