Toddler must haves - years 1-2
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Ah toddlers! It's a magical time when your baby is growing some independence, learning about the world around them, and starting to make sense of it all.
They've officially outgrown the baby gear and baby toys, but aren't quite big enough for the preschool items. So, what do you need for a toddler? I've polled the audience and included some of my favourite items that were a hit for all 3 of my kiddos.
After the age of 1 you can safely start introducing traditional comfort items into your kiddo's crib. Stuffies, pillows, or blankies are a good place to start whenever you're comfortable. With all of my littles, I waited until closer to 18 months before introducing a pillow or blankie, but you know your kiddo the best.
We love the Celeep Baby Toddler pillow. It comes in a 2-pack (so convenient for twins!), has a cover, and is hypoallergenic. We also bought extra pillow cases to fit. The pillow case it comes with, and these extra ones fold over like an envelope so there's no open end like you would have with your traditional pillows.
Blankets & Sleep Sacs
For blankets, we just use one of the many baby blankets on hand since they seem to kick them off most of the night anyways. We do love to use the Halo Early Walker Micro Fleece sleep sacs to keep them warm through the night. The feet are cut out so they can get around easily, but it keeps their bodies warm until they can figure out that whole blankie situation.
We still have baby camera's on the girls (even on Nora), but somewhere between ages 1-2 I stopped running them through the night. I still use the camera to check in as they're falling asleep, in the morning, and to check on them through the night. We use the Lollipop camera, which I really like because it records clips during "events", which is if someone cries out or crosses the boundary I set. I'm able to go into the app and see what was happening when that event happened.
Black Out Curtains
We use the suction cup black out curtains found here in both Nora and the twin's bedroom. Having that dark space has been really important to create that sleep environment for the girls.
Fun Uncle Bobby bought the girls these star projectors and they've been a huge hit. We do not keep them on all night, but it has helped set the tone that it's bedtime and they haven't been fighting getting into bed since we've had it. I wouldn't call this a must-have, but a fun-to-have.
We have two of these baby gates - one in the living room hallway and the other at the top of the stairs. I think some sort of containment device is important, but it's more important to customize it to your home. For some, it looks like these extra large play pens, for others it could be a super wide baby gate, or maybe these more traditional gates work for you.
I swear by these baby proofing magnets. They connect to the inside of your cabinets and release with a magnet so you don't have anything visible on the outside of your cabinets. This pack comes with 16 locks and we only used 6 in our kitchen, so we had plenty left over in the event one broke and needed to be fixed. The kids never broke one, but my Father-in-law did once and it was so easy to swap it out.
Every time I post a pic of the girls in the bath I get flooded with questions about our faucet cover. We have the Boon FLO cover and absolutely love it.
We've used a few different kind of tooth brushes, but I'm really into these bamboo options lately. I love the eco-friendly aspect and it stands up to toddlers mow-ing down because "I do it!" is a thing now.
Having 3 girls, de-tangling is now part of our everyday routine. I love this spray, which I use straight out of the bottle after bath time but also I mix in a spray bottle with water for a morning pick-me-up. I swear by the WET brush (we actually have 2, just in case) to make the whole process that much easier.
Some people start to introduce potty/using the toilet around the age of 2. We haven't gotten there yet, but we used this seat for Nora when she was 2.5 years old.
I love me some Hello Bello! We use their monthly subscription at home, and use Pampers while at daycare for no other reason than the Hello Bello diapers come in smaller packages and I don't want to have to refill every week. I love Hello Bello because it uses plant-based materials, which makes me feel better about diapering two booty's at once, and the patterns are super cute. Plus, it comes straight to my door, which I just adore.
Rear Facing Car Seats & Accessories
I'm on team rear-face forever (okay maybe not forever). Having a car seat that fits your vehicle and your needs is so important. We use the Diono seats for our crew so we're able to sit 3 across. Having a good mirror is important so I can see at a glance why my toddlers are losing their minds. I like the size of these mirrors and I also love that they don't move, vs. others that pivot. The ones that pivot are guaranteed to face the ceiling or the floor by the end of the journey.
The stroller you use for your infant will likely also work for your toddler. Check your model's weight capacity, but most are built to last through the toddler years. We adore our Bugaboo Donkey Twin. However if you're looking for something different, you may want to check out a bike trailer. It attaches to your bike but also can operate like a stroller.
Eventually your toddler will start to resist their stroller, but their little legs won't carry them far. The push trike is a perfect compromise that allows them the freedom to explore without being on their own. We have a single and a double push trike and the double trike is amazing with twins!
Ring Sling or carrier
I still carried my babies well into toddlerhood. My twins didn't start walking until 15ish months old so I had to use a carrier to get them in and out of daycare. I loved the TwinGo for transporting the twins, but also loved the Ergo when I just had Nora. A ring sling will forever be a fav too. Wildbird is a great brand that makes quality slings.
Ah the wonderful world of toddler food! There's no two ways about it, you're going to be scraping food off the floor and your cabinets for years to come. Here's a few items that we used that made this process a bit easier.
I would also put in any kind of toddler utensil, but they always end up eating with their hands anyways.
Age appropriate toys open up the door to your child using their imagination and learning the world around them. Here's a few of our favs.
Pickler Triangle, ramp & rocker
8 piece princess dress up accessories
Books, books, books and more books! Here's a list of our favs.
And that's it! These are the items that got us through age 1. Best of luck, and may your coffee/wine be stronger than your toddler.