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Vay Favorites: Gifts For The Little Ones (Happy Birthday, Laylani!)

I spent this past weekend with my niece who is brand new to the five year old life. Along with her, there are many little people in my world that I celebrate throughout the year. Here are a few of my favorite children’s gifts as well as tips that may come in handy when you’re shopping for a little munchkin in your own life.

If I had to describe Laylani in three words, I’d choose graceful, sophisticated, and lovable. She really is something special. She brings the most intense amounts of joy to my spirit and it’s always a blessing being able to share and celebrate another year with her. If you have a baby, toddler, or kid in your life that you find yourself shopping for, check out this list of my favorite children’s gifts as well as tips from my gal and Madrina of five, @Imari_Gisselle.

Yana Paskova NYT

Photo Cred: Yana Paskova of The New York Times

Classic Toys: Electronics are the wave these days but at times I worry that kids of the younger generation are losing an interest in creating because of iPads, TV’s, and tablets. Fav Classic Toy Brand: Melissa & Doug 

Books: Most of the baby girls in my family are of mixed race so I like children’s books that celebrate interracial families, various cultures, and originality. Being an Afro Latina and struggling with identity during my own childhood, I find it necessary to do my part in assuring that they understand their culture(s) and begin to explore who they truly are despite the various categories that society will attempt to put them in. Mixed is beautiful; children’s books are a good way to start those identity, race, and self-love conversations early. Oh, and don’t forget to read the book with them 🙂

Experiences: There is nothing like the gift of experience. What I love about this gift is that you can go as big or small as you want <3.

IMG_3989For a little more inspiration, I reached out to my gal Imari Anglero (God-Mommy of the year!) and asked her to contribute tips on shopping for the children in our lives. Here’s what she had to say:

When shopping for children (girls or boys) you always want to know a little about the child. What they like, what their favorite colors are, what their interested in at the time.

To get a head start on gift giving, enroll into brand email programs for updates on their discounts, coupons, and  other major deals. Everyone loves a good save.

Favorite Stores for Children’s Clothes:

Old Navy – Good quality of clothing at an affordable price.

H&M – Adorable collections also at an affordable price.

Zara – A little more costly but perfect for special occasion outfits.

Gap – A go to for newborn attire.

IMG_8985When shopping for toys, focus on age groups.

Infants are starting to learn their senses so look for toys that make noise and/or have textures. Toddlers are exploring their imagination and love characters they identify with. They also like to stay busy so anything having to do with coloring, counting, and writing is great. Books and educational games are ideal for the kids that are heading to school. They make for quality gifts that the parents will love.

If-You-Give-A-Mouse-A-Cookie-Detroit

If You Give A Mouse A Cookie, a childhood classic.

Also, don’t be afraid to purchase gently used toys if their still in tact.

Once Upon A Child is the thrift store for gently used toys that are like new. Sometimes, you’ll get your hands on a unique and original find; such as a toy that’s not being sold anymore but perfect for the little one you’re shopping for.

Thanks, Ima!

What are your favorite children’s gifts? Did you like any on this list?

 

 

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