Setting the Holiday Scene Part II: Gifts for the Little Ones

Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate or referral links.

–     I have been scouring high and low for the last few months to put together a fun list for toddlers and preschoolers.  My toddler A (2-year-old boy) and my preschooler B (4- year-old girl)  do not attend preschool, so when I look for holiday gifts I am pretty discerning.  I need to find gifts that are engaging, educational, promote physical activity and that will foster maturity on many different fronts.  My hope is that these gifts will not only delight my little ones, but will also keep on giving for the rest of the year.  The following are my top fifteen for the 2014 holiday season.  All items can be found on or by clicking provided links but prices will vary and coupon codes will change, especially as the holidays get closer.

Note:  You can see Setting the Holiday Scene Part I of this series by clicking here.

Item One:  Learning Resources Super Sorting Pie (Amazon).

–     Pie, fruits and vegetables, sorting, patterns, colors and fine motor coordination..what is not to love?

Item Two: Melissa & Doug See & Spell (Amazon)

Melissa & Doug See & Spell

–    My daughter B actually asked for this item.  I love how it is a puzzle but also helps with reading skills.

Item Three: Little Tikes Cozy Truck (Amazon and various providers)

Little Tikes Cozy Truck

–      All of my children have had a Little Tykes Cozy Car or another variation. We have never had a truck but I think this would be great for my two-year-old.

Item Four: Pure Fun Ladybug Jumper Trampoline (Amazon)

Pure Fun Ladybug Jumper Trampoline

–     What an awesome way to stay active during the winter months.  We are going to build this and have it ready to go for B by the tree.

Item Five:  Disney Princess Enchanted Cupcake Party Game (Target and Amazon)


–     B is still all about tea parties and this game is great in terms of memorization and patterns.   I know we will have many nights of cupcake fun.

Item Six:  A Kiwi Crate Gift Subscription

Kiwi Crate
Cost:  $19.99/monthly
Shipping:  United States and Canada

Click Here to receive 25% off your first crate.  Make sure to type HOLIDAY25 as your coupon code.

–     B and I have been completing Kiwi Crates since she was 2.  You can see a past review by clicking here.  She knows exactly what the green box is that comes on our porch each month and gets beyond excited.  Kiwi Crate is a once a month subscription service for kids ages 3-7 that provides themed arts and craft with a strong education experience.  I love coming home to this crate because I know my four-year-old and I are about to have a blast.  Kiwi offers many boxes for different ages and my coupon code above works for all boxes.  I will be reviewing their Koala Crate this month as well but they have a variety of amazing gifts.

Item Seven:  A Citrus Lane Gift Subscription

40% Off First Citrus Lane Box & Free Skip Hop Gift

Citrus Lane
$29/monthly or less with subscription choice
Ships to US, APO, DPO and FPO addresses

Coupon:  The above offer has now expired however you can receive 40% of your first box by Clicking here and typing JOLLY40 at check out.

–     I purchased a year to Citrus Lane for A for his birthday and holiday gift.  I absolutely love this subscription.  They have great items and often include something special for mom.  They typically also give you a choice of one item each month.  To see my November review click here or click here to see my October review.

Item Eight and nine:  Kindle Fire Kids Edition and a gift subscription to Free Time (Right now you get a 2-year warranty, a year of Free Time and a bumper case when you purchase this Fire for $119.00).

Fire HD Kids Edition: quick tour

–     We purchased B a Kindle Fire this summer but paid much more than the current offer.  I am considering picking one up for A.  We just started using the Free Time App and we love it.  Today B was working with shapes and patterns and reading Dr. Seuss.  You will receive hundreds of apps and books for free for a year and right now the subscription is only 2.99 a month.  You can also set parental controls on time and so much more.  My one word of caution is to absolutely set the parental controls correctly so that purchases can not be made by your little one.  The bumper case is fantastic.

Item Nine:  A gift subscription to

– I cannot speak highly enough about ABC Mouse. B could barely speak when she started using this program. She has graduated from the toddler levels and is full speed ahead to graduate pre-school. You can pay monthly or annually. I believe a year is around $59.00 and well worth the expense. Many home school programs are now using this service for lessons.

Items Ten and Eleven :  VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Garage and VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels – Emergency Vehicles 3-pack


–      My two-year-old is slightly obsessed with cars right now.  We saw this at a local store and he gripped it for dear life.  I put it back when he was not looking with full plans to send Santa a picture of what he would like.  I cannot wait to see his face and I have to give his grandma credit since it is coming from her.

Item 12:  ALEX Toys – Early Learning, Little Hands Twist & Drill, 1485

–     I think both my kids will enjoy this Alex product.  I initially was going to get it for my son, but my daughter saw the picture and was asking for it as well.  I would love to get her working with tools early.

Items Thirteen and Fourteen:  Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg and One by    Kathryn Otoshi

–     Each year I like to pick a special book for each child and leave them a special note.  This year I want my kids to know it is okay to make mistakes and love each other for all our wonderful differences.

–      A life lesson that all parents want their children to learn: It’s OK to make a mistake. In fact, hooray for mistakes! A mistake is an adventure in creativity, a portal of discovery. A spill doesn’t ruin a drawing—not when it becomes the shape of a goofy animal. And an accidental tear in your paper? Don’t be upset about it when you can turn it into the roaring mouth of an alligator.

–     Blue is a quiet color. Red’s a hothead who likes to pick on Blue. Yellow, Orange, Green, and Purple don’t like what they see, but what can they do? When no one speaks up, things get out of hand — until One comes along and shows all the colors how to stand up, stand together, and count. As budding young readers learn about numbers, counting, and primary and secondary colors, they also learn about accepting each other’s differences and how it sometimes just takes one voice to make everyone count.

Item Fifteen:  Ivy Kids Kits

Ivy Kids Subscription Kit
Ivy Kid Kits
Special:  Right now you can save 20% off of you your first box by typing IVY20 at checkout.

–     I am very fortunate that B’s grandmother purchases this kit for us each month.  We have had so much fun and she is learning so much.  You can see my October Review by clicking here.

Ivy Kits are a monthly educational subscription for children ages 3-8 developed by early childhood teachers with children of their own. Our goal is to provide monthly resources and tools to parents and caregivers looking to have more meaningful learning experiences with their children. Each month you will receive a kit containing more than ten activities based upon a classic children’s book. The activities have been carefully crafted to encourage curiosity, problem solving, and creativity in young children. The Ivy Kit games and projects are a fun way to develop fine and gross motor muscles, build math and literacy skills, encourage reading comprehension, and promote scientific thinking.

–     I cannot even begin to tell you how much we love the holidays in our house.  Generation after generation we celebrate so much, our beliefs, family and the love of giving and having the opportunity to give.  I wish you all happy holidays and hope this guide helps to take a bit of stress away.

–  J


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