Toddler-to-Preschool (and Beyond) Gift Guide

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

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I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


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I receive a lot of questions about Quinn’s favorite toys, so with the holidays (hey, Black Friday and Cyber Monday) on the horizon, I wanted to share what’s on his Christmas list this year as well as a few blog post round-ups of his very favorite toys.

On Quinn’s Christmas list this year:

  • PicassoTiles – Quinn already has a set of PicassoTiles (aka cheaper version of MagnaTiles), but he absolutely loves them and literally plays with them every single day, so we thought a second set would help him create even more elaborate structures!
  • Highlights Magazine – Quinn read a few issues at the library and loved them! Now that he’s starting to drop his naps, we want to implement “quiet/reading time,” so we thought a kid magazine would be the perfect way to start it!
  • Anki Cozmo Toy Robot – This robot is RIGHT up Quinn’s alley, and we know he’ll love it. It’s not cheap, but it’s definitely a toy that he’ll use for awhile!

The links below include toys that Quinn has loved since his early toddler days and still pulls out to play with again and again as a nearly 4.5-year-old. They’re toys that have grown with him over the years, and I hope the suggestions help you with your holiday shopping this season!

The Ultimate Book of Vehicles: From Around the World – Holy cow, this book. I’ve never read a single book so many times in my life. We bought this book for Quinn last April, and we’ve read it every single day since. Sometimes, we even read it more than once a day! He absolutely loves this book, and I think just about any kid would. It’s definitely a good time. Although we’ve read it so many times that Mal and I have a love-hate relationship with it nowadays. Haha!

Tomy Hide & Squeak Eggs – A blog friend actually sent these eggs to Quinn shortly after he was born, and he’s loved them every since. At nearly 4.5 years old, he still plays with them on the regular.

Rocket Ship Tent – This tent is still a huge hit in our house. Quinn got it for Christmas last year, and he still plays with it a ton. It’s an especially good time when friends come over. I mean, hiding from the “Murphy Monster” is SO FUN!

VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Ultimate RC Speedway – Qman received this toy for his birthday last year, but he’s obsessed with it all over again now! I actually think Mal likes it a lot too because he gets to make all sorts of fun track creations for Quinn! 🙂

Paw Patrol, Lights and Sounds Air Patroller Plane – The Paw Patrol Air Patroller Plane is definitely a Quinn favorite. He loves using it with his Paw Patrol figurines. It’s for sure a top toy in our house!

Count Your Chickens game – I’ve blogged about this game in the past, but it’s definitely worth another mention. It’s just the best game for little kids. It’s a cooperative game, so everyone works together to get the chicks in the coop and it focuses on numbers and counting, so it’s educational too. We play it allllll the time in our house!

Constellation Night Light – This thing is so much more than a night light! Actually, Quinn rarely uses it as a night light. It’s much more fun for dance parties and mood lighting in his tents. All of his friends love it too!

Ghostbusters Proton Pack Projector – Apparently, our house is haunted because Quinn busts a lot of ghosts nowadays. His proton pack comes out to play just about everyday!

Gearation Refrigerator Magnets – These magnets get so much use in our house. They’re, well, cool gear magnets, but they also work as ghost traps and protective force fields. The options are endless with these babies!

Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table – Quinn fell in love with this water table as a 1 year old, and it’s been a favorite ever since (in the warmer months, of course).

Radio Flyer 4-in-1 Stroll ‘N TrikeI’ve mentioned this bike on CNC in the past, but it’s such a great toy, I just had to mention it again. It grows with your child, so it has 4 ways to ride: infant trike, steering trike, learn-to-ride trike, and classic trike. Quinn loves it, and we take it out almost daily when we walk Murphy.

Question of the Day

What’s on your little one’s holiday list this year?

P.S. And to organize all of these toys, I highly recommend the Honey-Can-Do Kids Toy Organizer and Storage Bins. We have one and it’s the best way to keep things tidy.

Parts of this blog post were originally published on November 17, 2017 and updated on November 14, 2018. 



  1. My three-year-old loves the Count your Chickens game. He’s definitely into truck so I’m grabbing that book recommendation is well! His favorite toy is his train set.

  2. My children are 19 and 22 but I still can recite the words to some of their favorite (read every day!) toddler books, ha,ha! So you will likely remember Vehicles From Around the World for a very long time……

  3. My 3 year old son is in to any kind of vehicles. We bought him the Hess vehicle last year so I bought him this years Hess vehicle too – they are awesome! Lights, noise and great quality. Also going to buy him a playmobil police cruiser and police station this year.

  4. We’re either turning the playroom into more of a teen hangout room set up for sleepovers with friends (maybe daybed with fun throw pillows, our old bedroom TV, posters, lamps etc) or updating her bedroom with new furniture and bedding. Either way… sniff… mama needs wine…sniff

  5. Lord help me…we bought our 4yo a kids’ karaoke machine. She is always singing and often uses the toilet paper holder as a microphone, so I think she’ll enjoy it. While she sings a LOT of Disney songs, she also has gotten into songs from The Greatest Showman, Trolls, and Sing, which *I* like to sing along with too. Hope it’s a hit!

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