Twelve Top Toy Buys in the First Year of a Baby’s Life

Twelve Top Toy Buys in the First Year of a Baby’s Life

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My baby boy Spencer is eleven months old, time is flying by! With his first birthday fast approaching, I can’t help but reflect on being a mama for the past year. What have I found challenging? Would I do anything differently? What do I love about being a mama? Let’s go with that one… what do I love about being a mama? There are so many reasons, but I’ve especially loved watching him reach developmental milestones throughout the year. The first time he rolled over, sat up, crawled, stood up, and very soon I’m sure he’ll be walking. These milestones often leap out at you when you least expect it!

I found the wonder weeks app particularly helpful to track his developments. It also gives suggestions on activities you can do with your baby to help their growth and development, but mostly I found it offers a massive relief and provides understanding to those difficult weeks when your baby is struggling during a leap, but he can’t tell you. 

Most of the toys Spencer uses are not just for fun but also aid specific types of development. So as I’m reflecting on the last year, I’ve been thinking about what information I could give that might help other mamas? So with that in mind, I’ve created a list of my twelve top toy buys in the first year of a baby’s life.

0-3 months

  1. Black and white cards: I’d read that bold black and white images are a great way to stimulate your newborn and help with their brain development. It was clear they worked for Spencer, when he would track the card moving from side to side. They were also a great calming tool too.
  2. Soft tactile books: I bought Buddy Dog’s Busy Day soft book; it has interactive and soothing tags that Spencer loved to explore; he especially loved the crinkle paper and squeaker inside the fabric. These books are fantastic for baby sensory.
  3. Baby Gym: I was lucky enough to receive two baby gyms as gifts, one soft and one wooden. I enjoyed using both. Both had detachable toys that he played with separately from the gym. The soft gym came with a soft mat which was great for tummy time; however, I liked how I could attach numerous sensory objects from the wooden gym.

3-6 months

  1. Teething rings: I would have been lost without a teething ring; it helped soothe Spencer’s gums and alleviate pain. It was an excellent tool for helping him learn how to grasp with his hands. I also used them as a prop to entice Spencer to roll over.
  2. Ball pit: I found the round ball pit useful around the 5-month mark, at this age, Spencer had begun sitting up unaided; however, at times he would fall, so being inside a round ball pit meant he could fall without hurting himself. (FYI I took out a lot of the balls at the beginning).
  3. Activity centre: I used the skip hop explore & more 3 stage activity centre. It’s suitable from 4 months onwards, and it converts from a sit-down activity to a play table when your child is older. It was aa great way to keep my Spencer entertained while developing his gross and fine motor skills.

6-9 months

  1. Jumperoo: This item is just good fun! You will see the biggest smile on your baby’s face as they jump up and down. The only problem with this one, the fun is short-lived, so it’s not the best value for money but great if you can do swapsies with friends.
  2. Touchy-feely books: Spencer loves all the ‘That’s not my’ books, all the books are a great sensory source. A great one for building his communication skills too.
  3. Stacking blocks: The stacking blocks have been one of Spencer’s favourite toys and probably the cheapest costing 12dhs from Ikea. When he was learning to crawl, he would army crawl after them. These blocks are great for building gross and fine motor skills, as well as keeping bubba entertained.

9-12 months

  1. Trolleys: I do have both a plastic and wooden trolley, Spencer enjoys using both. From a mums perspective, I liked both too, however, if you don’t put an object in the wooden trolley to weigh it down, it can tip over, and when I put objects inside, Spencer takes them out (lol).
  2. Puzzle with different shapes and knobs (some play music): For Christmas, Spencer was gifted a Mellissa and Doug musical instrument sound puzzle. Spencer can only pull all the instrument shapes out using his pincer grip, as time goes by he will begin to put the shapes back onto the puzzle board.
  3. Shape sorter: At the moment Spencer isn’t putting the shapes into their fitted hole, but he is taking them out of the box and passing the pieces to me and then requests for them back straight away (lol)

Find all of these accessories/toys and more on Yalla Baby Box.

I hope these simple tips will help you mamas to enjoy precious time that will fly by, so you can have confidence in playing with your baby whilst also providing strong development guidance. These have all made a big difference to my time with Spencer and I know I will immediately rely on for my next baby. Many of the toys I’ve mentioned will offer progressive  uses at different stages of developments, so they will grow and evolve with your baby as their skill set evolves, hence good value for money and good quality so can be reused in the future. 

With Love,

Yalla Baby Team

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