Here’s a list of Serenity’s Favorite Toys and why we like them =)
All Four Super Readers: I got them as stocking stuffers but couldn’t resist giving her Princess Pea right away. She loves these dolls, they’re just the right size for her to hold. She asks for them by name all the time, carries them with her, and generally enjoys them!
Tea Party Set: I bought her Tinkerbell tea set when she was way too young for it, and was so excited when she became interested in Tinkerbell I got it out right then! She loves the tea set and we have tea parties all the time! She brings the cups and will hold it to your mouth to drink. She loves to drink real tea too, she shares with me all the time. She also learned to click her cups together and say “cheers!” It’s also cute when she collects all the spoons from her tea set =)
Dora Magna Doodle: I found this at the dollar store and thought it might be a good travel activity for her… it turned out to be an every day sort of toy. She’ll bring it to us and ask us to write specific words or letters… Sometimes then she’ll color on top of what we’ve written like she’s trying to write it herself. She especially likes to write Mama and Daddy, and she can spell both of those words if we ask her letter by letter.
Teddy Bear and Quack: Teddy Bear is the blue bear that I’ve been giving her to sleep with since the doctor said she was old enough to have something in her crib. She is very attached to him now, and asks for him if he’s not in her crib at bedtime. She doesn’t fuss if she doesn’t have him though. Quack is a duck she made herself at Build A Bear around Easter 2010. I asked her what her name should be and she promptly replied “Quack” which is so appropriate as this was her first word too =) She wants both of them in bed with her, and if she gets in our bed in the middle of the night I often find that she has gathered them both up (and sometimes her blankie and even her pillow too!) in preparation to take them with her to Mama’s Bed.
Spelling Puzzle (new game): I ordered this puzzle after seeing it on one of my teaching blogs and Serenity was instantly fascinated with it. Each puzzle forms a word with a picture, and there is one letter on each piece. When we first opened it she couldn’t maneuver the pieces to fit together, but after the third time we played it she was easily putting them together. Now I just pour out all the pieces and she can finish each puzzle easily. She’ll even call out the letter that she needs, if she has O and X she’ll say “I need an F!” She has even spelled some of the words out on her own without the puzzle or picture! The puzzle says for four and up… but it’s perfect for Serenity as letters are still her favorite thing =)
Super Duper Computer: She got this from Vana Emma and FarFar for Christmas this year. It’s a little computer with literacy games on it. She can easily play all the Alpha Pig letter games on her own, and Princess Presto’s spelling games. She can even sometimes do Super Why’s reading games, although I think she is just able to do that because she’s tried it so many times now she recognizes the words he asks for. She doesn’t really understand rhyming yet so there are still things to challenge her!
Alphabet Block Books: This was an early favorite just after her first birthday. I got these blocks thinking they’d be fun to stack, and it wasn’t long before she knew what every single letter was!
Rocks: Serenity loves playing with rocks, fortunately she rarely puts them in her mouth anymore, although right around year one we still had to monitor her carefully for that. We had several tearful incidents where we had to go inside because she stuck rocks in her mouth. Now she loves throwing rocks in ponds or creeks, and counting rocks, and just holding them. We also painted rocks as one of her crafts and she uses those to build houses. The rock she painted green evidently reminds her of a car, she often zooms it around the house =)
Spoons: It was so funny that simple spoons could keep Serenity so happy, but they were a favorite all year long! We have quite a collection of spoons from Yogurtland because they are such fun colors, (thanks to all our nice yogurt-loving friends in Cali) and she still plays with them!
Buckets/Shovels: Serenity is definitely drawn to both buckets and shovels. She got a red bucket at her first birthday, it was the favor for that party, and she loves carrying it around and putting things in it. She also plays with her easter basket a lot! When we went to the giant sandbox at the fair with Tina, she collected every available shovel and just enjoyed having as many as possible =) She likes to dig in the dirt with Mama using her shovels too!
Dribble Ball : The dribble ball is a toy that we technically got for Serenity but mostly Daddy plays with it. She loves to watch him dribble, shoot, and dunk the ball. She also likes to sit on it and go bouncy bouncy!
Jewelry: Jewelry is a recent phenomenon, I got her a set of bracelets and necklaces at Christmas, and a few weeks ago I got out my jewelry box that is full of my Granny Hale’s jewelry for us to play dress-up. She loves it, and it’s so cute to see her in jewelry I played with and even wore in middle school. Probably her favorite thing from my jewelry box is a little antique key that I sometimes wore as a necklace. She carries it everywhere and pretends to lock things, like doors, fences, and even walls =)
Felt Garden: I made the felt garden as a Christmas present for Serenity. It has pickable peas, strawberries, and carrots, plus some flowers I got in the dollar bin at Target. Serenity likes to fill her Easter basket with produce, and she’ll bring you carrots and her other veggies and pretend to eat them =)
Little White Table: Dad built her this table. It’s a great place for tea parties, eating Serenity’s actual meals, and for climbing on!
Musical Instruments: I love playing instruments with Serenity =) Her favorite is the xylophone, and she also loves the maracas and recorder. Sometimes she brings instruments so we can play together! She’ll say “that’s a good sound!”
Wonderful Watering Can and other tools: I got the toolbox thinking maybe she’d enjoy it because Alpha Pig uses tools a lot on SuperWhy. She does love playing with it, but she usually says “just like Papa!” The watering can is a bath toy we’ve had forever, but the day she decided it was the Wonderful Watering Can like Alpha Pig’s was the day it became one of her favorite toys!
Uno Moo: Mom got Serenity Uno Moo, thinking she would probably be a game player like her parents =) Well, Serenity doesn’t quite have the patience for rules yet, but she loves sorting the animals! She sorts them by color, and by animal =) It’s so cute to see them all lined up! She makes the animal noises, and puts them away in the barn. Great fun!
Everyone’s Shoes: Eric is a little alarmed by how much Serenity enjoys shoes, but I assure him it’s a normal toddler thing and that she’s not definitely going to own hundreds of pairs of shoes =) She brings everyone their shoes, (and of course they need to put them right on.) We went shoe shopping one day and she wanted to try on every pair in the store, even the ones that were not even close to her size. She chose a pair of pink shoes and a purple one. The pink are definitely her favorites, although we still often wear the red tennis shoes that I’d gotten her earlier in the year.
Lucky, Wish Bear and Funshine and Piggy: Lucky, Wish Bear and Funshine are the animals that live in Mama’s Bed, one monkey and two Care Bears. Serenity spends a lot of time tucking them in and letting them bounce on the bed. Piggy came in her Easter Basket. She is evidently very huggable =) She’s the pig from “If You Give a Pig a Party/Pancake” so we like to read her books and snuggle with her.
Scarves: I dyed a bunch of scarves with kool-aid for her, and they are great for imaginative play. She makes them into rivers, uses them for tents, and for pretty dresses!
Alien Aisha Cat: This is a happy meal toy I got from Eric five years or so ago. It lived in my car forever, but now it’s definitely Serenity’s. It’s just the right size for her to hold in her hand!
Hippo Pool/Turtle Pool: Dad got all these blow up pools last summer, and we love to use them both for splashing in summer and for holding all our ball pit balls the rest of the year!
Easter Eggs (with surprises inside): Easter was a LOT of fun for Serenity this year. She loves finding different things inside of the Easter Eggs. In fact, even after Easter we kept the eggs out and kept putting the toys back in, and each day she’d bring them to us to open and be so excited when she found the blue bunny, the pink bunny, the duck, or some other surprise!
Legos/Blocks: “Stack ‘em!” I love how Serenity stacks her legos in groups by color. It’s so cute!
Sand Box: I made her a little sand box with one bag of sand and a tub, and we dig in it most every time we go in our yard. The tub has a lid so the sand stays clean. When she uses all that up, I guess I’ll go and buy another three dollar bag of sand =)
Ball Pit Balls: Rosario got us these for her birthday last year, and they have gotten a LOT of use. It’s especially fun when people come over to climb in them with her! Right now her Secret Room is just full of them, and it’s a blast!
Green Pillow: I was shopping at Bed Bath and Beyond when she saw this green pillow and fell in love with it. It was soft and huggable, and matched our stuff perfectly so I got it =)
Super Why Game: Serenity’s First Board Game… Like I said she doesn’t do rules yet, but she loves to line up the figures according to a game of her own, and she can answer the questions on the cards!
Barn Shape Sorter/Normal Shape Sorter: She knows all her shapes! The barn sorter is from Jana and David, and it’s cool because it has letters AND shapes!
T-Ball: This is another one that we usually play with Mama and Daddy. Serenity likes hitting the ball but she likes watching when Daddy hits it even more!