Do you ever find yourself hopelessly overstimulated after five minutes in the toy section of your local big box store? Are you naturally drawn to simple, classic toys that encourage imagination? Ever wish there was someone that could choose the perfect toys for your little ones and deliver them right to your doorstep? If so, you are going to love this post!
Ever since my tots were tiny babies, I have been concerned about choosing the right toys to stimulate their growth and development. As a developmental specialist and conscientious parent (and playmate!), I appreciate toys that are durable, beautiful, and timeless. I want toys in my home that encourage imaginative play, concentration, cognitive/language development, fine/gross motor involvement, or all of the above. Unfortunately, toys like these are few and far between in the American market, which is flooded with beeping, flashing toys that do everything for your child. When it comes to good toys, Less = More!
Enter Little Pnuts, a toy subscription service that takes the guesswork out of choosing toys for your 0-5 year old. The concept is simple; subscribers receive quarterly shipments containing 3-5 toys that are carefully selected for your child based on age, gender, and developmental level. As if that weren’t great enough, Little Pnuts searches the globe for toys that are made of organic, sustainable materials and uses all eco-friendly packaging and carbon-free shipping methods. Once I heard about Little Pnuts and saw what they had to offer, I signed the twins up and eagerly awaited our first shipment.
Our first box arrived in mid-September. We signed up for the Toddler Special Delivery, geared towards children age 1.5, which was perfect for our little ones. Initially, I opened the box during nap time and was pleased to see that a booklet was included with a description of each toy, the developmental milestones targeted for our age group, and a variety of play ideas. The toys themselves were from three different companies, or Brand Partners, known for their high-quality products. Little Pnuts takes pride in their Brand Partners, an eclectic, multinational mix of toymakers united by a common philosophy. Instead of letting the twins open everything at once, I decided to stagger the toys out, rotating a new one in every few weeks to prolong the excitement and give them a chance to really focus on each new addition.
The first toy I decided to set out for the kiddos was the Hape First Shapes Puzzle. We own several Hape toys and have always been pleased with them; this puzzle did not disappoint. The puzzle is simple; it consists of four wooden shapes in different primary colors. I love how the shapes have large knobs perfect for the twins’ tiny hands; they get so much satisfaction out of completing the puzzle independently!
Although the puzzle is pretty easy for them, they have been anything but bored with it.
In addition to using it as a puzzle, the chunky shapes are perfect to use as “stampers” in a variety of different mediums. In the pictures above, Toots is using them to press shapes into glitter glue that I squirted into a plastic baggie and taped to a window. See how excited she is by her discovery?
Another fun toy from the shipment is the Haba Torrino block tower. I have a slight obsession with all things Haba, and love this whimsical tower and how it works right in with the other Haba blocks that we own.
As you can see, my daughter loves Torrino, too!
Since the top of the tower reminds me of a little clown hat, I decided to get creative with the play dough and packing material. I love toys that encourage my inner child, as well 😉
The last toy from the September package is my personal favorite…a set of absolutely scrumptious Jungle Beads from Djeco.
The set includes 10 brightly painted, chunky wooden beads with felt accents (have I mentioned my felt fetish?) that look like happy jungle animals. There are also 12 felt shapes (leaves and flowers) and two laces with extra-long plastic ends, perfect for beginners.
I set them out for the twins to find after nap a few days ago, and they sat and talked about the box for awhile before even trying to open it.
Once it was open, they had fun examining all the different animals and making their respective sounds. Here, Toots is showing me a zebra and doing her best impersonation.
Then we all had to pretend to be crocodiles, including biting each other and all the animals 😉 Don’t worry, no swallowing occurred!
I wasn’t sure if my little ones would be successful at the lacing part yet, but they surprised me once again. Each one worked hard to lace their favorite animal onto a string to make a “necklace.”
So proud of himself!
Speaking of cute, there was also a little bonus critter (a caterpillar, I think?) from Green Toys tucked into our shipment. I can’t find any information about it, but Little Man latched onto it right away and periodically insists on feeding it part of his dinner 😉
I guess that means it’s a winner, too!
It’s pretty obvious from my review how much we enjoyed our first Little Pnuts shipment. If you are interested in subscribing, the next ship date is December 10th, so you have plenty of time to hop on over to their website and sign up. You can either pay a lump sum ($240, free shipping) for an annual subscription, or choose the monthly option and pay $25 each month (shipping included) you are subscribed. Both options receive four quarterly special deliveries per year with 3-5 toys per box.
Speaking of boxes, Little Pnuts encourages customers to reuse their packaging in an attempt to be kind to the environment. Stay tuned for our next post and I show you what we did with ours!
Until next time,
** I was in no way compensated by Little Pnuts for this post- I simply love the service and wanted to share with my readers! All opinions are completely my own.