Tuesday, October 13, 2015

{31 for 21} Thinking Ahead: Holiday Gift Guide.

Christmas is still a couple months off, but in the interest of not being stressed in December, I am starting to Christmas shop.  Plus, I have photo shoots almost every weekend until Thanksgiving, and I will most likely fill up through mid-December.

Therefore, I present to you....

Megan and Ellie's Super Awesome Gift Guide  (Caroline is too little to care.  And Matt hates shopping.)

Is it Down syndrome specific?  The toys almost all work on various developmental needs or benefit people with disabilities in some way. Or I just think they're awesome.  So kind of Down syndrome specific, or at least stuff my kid with Down syndrome liked/would like this year.

Baby Toys

#1 - A box with wrapping paper.  Because it's the best and easiest.  And cheap.  And no matter what I write, you all know that kids like the paper and boxes best anyway.

#2 - Slinky.  Seriously great for all ages!  Ellie's therapist gave her one when she was maybe six months old and it's still a winner.  Also, somehow it has survived for about four years, which I didn't think a Slinky could do.  I can't even remember all the skills Ms. Linda worked on with Ellie and the Slinky, but I know there were a lot.

#3 - Any kind of spill and fill toy.  This skill took Ellie forever!  She didn't like letting go to drop objects into containers, so we bought lots of spill and fill toys.  Fine motor skills, here we go!


#1 - Ellie's favorite flashcards.  She is obsessed.  Early literacy, and they're tactile.  Win-win.

#2 - Art supplies.  Ellie still uses her easel.  She has this one in a more colorful version, and she has loved to use crayons, markers, and my favorite, a wet paintbrush on a chalkboard!  No mess!  Plus, a great way to work on gross motor (standing) and fine motor (prewriting.)


#3 - Pretend food.  Ellie still uses all of hers to "cook" and serve us meals!  We love the Melissa and Doug food and this little grill.  It's super cheap but it's been a favorite of Ellie's for almost two years now (if not more!)


#1 - We are planning to ask Santa for a playhouse for both girls.  I'll let you know if he grants that request and if it's a winner.  We're thinking about something like this:

#2 - Musical instruments.  (You may also want to get yourself earplugs and/or Tylenol.)  Ellie's recent favorite was a guitar, although I admit she destroyed it after six months.  This one looks a little tougher than the one we bought last year!

#3 - Art supplies.  Ellie has some of these puppets as part of another set, but she's getting a puppet only set for Christmas.  Remember Happy the Frog?

Any age

#1 - Jude&Fi hair clips!  Ellie wears them almost every day and I borrow them from her.  My friend Shannon makes them, and she has a little girl with Down syndrome.  These clips are fantastic - made from wig clips so they stay in.

#2 - A super special stuffed friend.  The girls just got two of the PolkaDotPeanutParade toys from their Aunt Anna.  Ellie keeps changing her mind about who gets Elephant and who gets Giraffe.  Ellie also has an Oli-Bo-Bolly doll she loves.  Basically, any handmade friend is a winner around here.

#3 - A box and some markers or paint.  Fine motor and imagination and general fun.

#4 - A photo session with your favorite local photographer!

Merry Christmas Shopping Early!

*There are affiliate links in this post.  There are also just fun links.
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