This is not a topic that I have a lot of experience in, but I’m learning! First of all, we have been shopping for lots of adorable little boys lately (Mason, Dylan, Will), and, with a godson and nephew on the way, we have many more boy birthdays in our future! While I know that you are obligated to purchase piles and piles of plastic, licensed toys with Thomas the Train, Toy Story, and whatever else on them, I’m offering some different options. I’ve had fun researching these gifts, and tried to find things that had some real value, both from a play and learning perspective and, if at all possible, some aesthetic value as well. I hate ugly toys, although I’ve had to give in to a few in my time! So here, in no particular order, are the items that would be under our tree if we had boys!
Pottery Barn Wooden Workbench and Tools, $99: Finally, a workbench that doesn’t look like an ugly, boring pegboard or a big hunk of plastic. This wooden workbench is packed with tools and makes an attractive addition to a boy’s room. If you don’t have the room for a big workbench, there are several attractive smaller options as well, like this mini workbench, $29, and the Green Toys Tool Box, made of recycled milk containers, $24. I also love this personalized tool caddy, $64, and this ingenious little book, which features seven popout cardboard shapes and ideas on how to use them. Finally, the Handyman Can is a tin tool kit filled with rubber and wood tools, $12.95.
Play Sets: I love these portable wooden mini sets from Pottery Barn Kids, $40. Your little guy can create an airport, train station or garage complete with wooden vehicles and roads.
Noah’s Ark and Wooden Figures, $150: This big, beautiful wooden boat is ready to sail with Noah, his wife, and his animal friends on board.
Haul and Tote Ride On, $89: This adorable rubberwood ride-on has rubber wheels for indoor use, and a wagon in the front for hauling all his favorite toys!
Converto Silver Retro Tricycle, $289-99: My oldest daughter has a pink Sky King retro tricycle and it is far and away her favorite ride-on! This sleek silver retro ride-on, $299, has the same vintage appeal and durability. The trailer (which is sold separately for a pricey $289) increases its play value. If you are looking for a more affordable alternative, Lola’s Sky King trike is also available in red or blue, $178! Not yet ready for pedals? This adorable “fire engine” is for the littlest guys!
Animal Hoppers, $32: You’ve seen those plastic ball hoppers with the licensed designs splattered all over them. These are much cuter, and softer too! Comes in monkey, dalmation, frog and pony.
Farm Play Set, $170: This complete farm collection features a spacious wooden barn, a stable, farm animals, vegetable garden, a farmer and his wife.
“Dress-Up” Clothes: Who says boys can’t play dress up? These Super Me! capes and cuffs, $48, are personalized and guaranteed to make any little boy feel like a superhero. If he’s an animal lover, he’ll enjoy dressing up as one with these Furree Faces, animal face masks with noise, $9.98 each, and these Make Believe hoods, $29.98.
Barbecue Grill Cooking Set, $129: This well-designed wooden set features everything he needs to host his own backyard barbecue, including burners that click and a nine-piece set of accessories (mustard, ketchup, etc.).
Wooden Doctor’s Set, $29.98: I recently threw out my daughters’ plastic Fisher Price doctor’s set, a beloved gift from their school, when I learned it had been recalled due to high lead levels. This is a safer alternative with just as much play value.
Archiquest Kings and Castles Block Set, $79.98: These beautiful blocks feature amazing architectural details, perfect for stimulating the imagination of your budding architect.
Plan City Parking Garage, $89.95: I love Plan Toys’ cool, eco-friendly options. Plan City offers infinite possibilities for expanding and adding on as your child grows up, and there are lots of cool accessories.This parking garage is a great way to start his collection.
Bilibo, $29.95: If your child doesn’t already have one of these simple, open-ended toys, he should. My girls have it, and so do my nieces, and they use it every day in every way imaginable.
Twin Ball Track, $79: Kids will have a great time assembling this wooden ball track, and then watching the balls zip down the colorful structure.
E-Racer Bamboo Car, $17.95: Sleek, wooden cars that really go! Parents will love the price and the eco-friendly design, and kids will love the speed and great details.
Diner Play Stand, $99: Kids will love playing restaurant with this attractive play stand, and it can be personalized too!
11-in-1 Game Center, $230: Kids will get years of use out of this versatile, well-made game table, which features 11 interchangeable games, including air hockey and table tennis. Looking for something smaller and more affordable? This tabletop air hockey will be an instant hit, as will this downsized foosball table, $59, air hockey, $79, and baseball-themed pinball game, $39.
Tree Fort Kit, $149: Each of these incredible forts is unique and made of salvaged tree branches, and it comes packed with features, from staircases to balconies to a swing and a bridge. Woodland characters and furniture, sold separately, add to the fun.
Pirate Ship, $149: This elaborate, detailed wooden play ship has everything a potential pirate needs to sail the high seas, including poseable figures, cannons, and wheels to make manouvering easy!
Little old blog but I really liked it as I’d to buy toys for my younger little champ…My son 🙂 Thanks