Sunday, July 3, 2011

What My Soon-to-be 2-year-old Wants For His Birthday

What does this have to do with the topic of this blog?  Well, a couple times I've mentioned that asking for what you want for gifts can save you a considerable amount of money, since it saves you from having to buy things you want or need.  Plus, it saves the gift giver money, since they aren't throwing it away on something you're just going to get rid of as soon as they aren't looking.  In my case, I tend to ask for things for the kids that will be helpful with our homeschooling, since that will further save us money.  I figured an example of what such a list may look like would be helpful to some people.

So here is what my youngest "officially" wants for his 2nd birthday!  Most of these are things that he's played with at the children's museum we frequent or at other people's houses, so I know he enjoys them.  (anyone that is looking at this because they will actually be getting him a present, please note:  HE DOES NOT NEED CLOTHES!  Also note that we don't care about the specific brands on this list; it is for illustrative purposes only.  We'd always prefer to support small businesses and/or products made in the USA.)

Step2 Little Helper’s Grocery CartStep2 Little Helper’s Grocery Cart

Smart Snacks Counting CookiesSmart Snacks Counting Cookies
Smart Splash - Letter Link CrabsSmart Splash - Letter Link Crabs
Little Helper Broom SetLittle Helper Broom Set
Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Cutting Fruit CrateMelissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Cutting Fruit Crate
Small World Living Toys My-Oh-My Pizza PieSmall World Living Toys My-Oh-My Pizza Pie
Alex Toys Super Cooking SetAlex Toys Super Cooking Set
Fisher-Price Bubble MowerFisher-Price Bubble Mower
Melissa & Doug Insects Wooden Chunky PuzzleMelissa & Doug Insects Wooden Chunky Puzzle
Melissa & Doug Farm Wooden Chunky PuzzleMelissa & Doug Farm Wooden Chunky Puzzle
Melissa & Doug Pets Wooden Chunky PuzzleMelissa & Doug Pets Wooden Chunky Puzzle

Melissa & Doug Playtime VeggiesMelissa & Doug Playtime Veggies
Smart Snacks Rainbow Color ConesSmart Snacks Rainbow Color Cones
Little Tikes TotSports T-Ball SetLittle Tikes TotSports T-Ball Set 
Little Tikes TotSports Basketball SetLittle Tikes TotSports Basketball Set
Melissa & Doug Stacking TrainMelissa & Doug Stacking Train
Enesco Karina 10.5" Labradoodle PlushEnesco Karina 10.5" Labradoodle Plush

If you notice, none of these toys (I don't think the bubble mower does, does it?) require batteries or promote television shows, but all of them stimulate the imagination or the body or both!  Kids don't need to be sitting around on their butts watching the toys play with themselves (yes, I phrased that the most obnoxious way possible, because I think toys that do everything for the child are the most obnoxious things out there!).  They need their little brains and their little bodies on the move and that is a huge part of how I pick toys for my kids, or any children I buy presents for.

A lot of great toys, like building today, for example aren't on this list because this is my fourth child, so we already have a lot of toys like that from the older children.  Most toys are shared between the kids once an initial "that toy is special" period wears off.  For a more complete list of wonderful toys and what makes toys great, check out this list by a localish (well, it was local where we lived before this) toy store.


  1. Just curious as to whether you've had Wedgits for your kids? They look almost simplistic at first, but you can build wonderful things with them. My oldest loved them as a young child, and now one of the careers he's looking at is as an architect. My youngest two enjoy playing with them as well.

  2. Nope, but that does look pretty cool!

  3. You are my new hero! Ive been sneaking in a post from your page through the day. You inspire me so much! I recently lost my job, im a
    single mom of a crazy two year old boy, frugality and gardening have helped me survive these last couple months. Been there done that with depression too. Your tips are great. Your recipes sound delicious. Im trying out your mushroom soup recipe tonight. Thank you for being you. Xoxo @ghettolina

  4. i just got rid of my grocery cart with food. gave it to my mom to keep at her house for the kids. it was that exact one too. it's very durable, i loved it! harris did too ;) wish i'd known...

  5. lol Figures! If he doesn't get one from someone else for his birthday, do you think you could wrangle it back? ;-)

  6. @Ghettolena I used to be in a similar position - single mother, no job, and I had a six year old, a two year old, and a baby at home. Even if I had been able to find work, the price of daycare would have taken up over half my paycheck.

    So I looked into the laws in my area and found it was ridiculously easy to become a certified child care provider. I loved it because I could stay at home with my children but still earn an income. I don't know what state you are in, but it might be worth googling the certification laws in your area.

    I'm considering getting certified again...even if I take in only one child, it's still over $600 extra income per month - which I could put directly into our savings account to buy a home.