Make the birth of a baby a special occasion for your toddler with a gift just for him. Gifts could be related to his new role as big brother or something special to show how special you think he is.
Often, when a new baby comes, the older sibling moves out of the crib and into a 'big kid' bed. While you're likely to move your toddler into the toddler bed before the baby arrives, remind your toddler how special his new digs are by outfitting his bed with some unique bedding.
Bespoke by Bliss by Deb is an Etsy seller who sells customized toddler bedding for your favorite big sibling. She has a variety of designer quality fabrics to choose from. In addition, if she doesn't have something you want, you can email her a picture of some fabric you like, and she'll work with you to create a custom order. A bedding set can include a blanket, fitted sheet and pillowcase. However, she's flexible and you can order each piece separately. Prices vary widely depending on the fabric you choose but you can expect to spend anywhere from $20 for a simple toddler set to around $100+ including a blanket made from designer fabric.
Taking care of a new baby will monopolize much of the parents' time. A gift that encourages quiet, independent play will be fun for the toddler and practical for the whole family.
For the one-to-two-year-old who embraces being able to do things independently, these Busy Toddler Cubes are perfect. The set of three wooden sensory cubes sells for around $40 and comes in a handmade carrying bag. Each cube is made of wood and features bright colors and small activities for little hands. The first cube has a click-button, a bell-toy, wooden beads on a string, a wooden ring and a 3-D smiley face picture. The second cube features two simple locks, a bell-toy, wooden beads on a string, a door handle and a nautical 3-D picture. The third block has a 3-D car image, two locks, a rolling gear, a click-button and a door handle. Each block is about 4 x 4 x 4 centimeters. Not only will these toys keep your toddler occupied, they will also help him gain skills and pride.
Toddlers don't always know how to express their emotions. Give the new sibling an outlet for whatever feelings she might have about her new family. Creative activities like this are also affordable and can be completed independently or with a loved one for some bonding time.
My First Crayola Mess-Free Double Duty is a two-sided art station made just for kids ages 12 months and older. One side has an enclosed gel pad where little hands can draw in the gel using a finger. The other side is a dry-erase whiteboard intended for use with crayons. The board comes with three triangle-shaped crayons in red, blue, and green that attach to a small clip on the edge of the board. You can purchase this beginner art set for around $12.
A Special Chair
The new baby will have special places where only she can lay or sleep, like in the bassinet or in a bouncy seat. Give the new older sibling a place where only he can sit.
The Small Personalized Nod Chair is a perfect size for toddlers, features their name embroidered on the backrest, and is lightweight so you can move it around the house. For around $80 you get a choice of 11 colors and patterns like Khaki Star pattern, light blue and light pink. The removable cover is made from 100% cotton and machine washable. The dimensions are 20.5" W x 17" D x 17" H and you can have up to 12 letters embroidered onto the chair.
Learning to Care
Some toddlers are excited to help care for new babies while others would rather not help at all. Help the new sibling learn about care and responsibility with a fun toy pet instead of a baby doll. Toddlers will see the animal and not necessarily associate it with caring for a baby.
VTech sells the Care for Me Learning Carrier which features a small, stuffed dog and interactive carrier. The set includes six pieces: a pink carry case with handle and buttons for learning basic concepts, plush brown puppy, chunky plastic comb, bottle, ball and bone in a dish. The side of the dog carrier has buttons and switches so the child can hear songs, letters, numbers, and be asked to find specific items for the dog. For around $22 you get this puppy care set and learning center in one. Toddlers can mimic parents caring for baby or have an independent toy and activity to play with.
While it's not necessary to give a gift to the new sibling when a baby is born, it helps keep the exciting event positive and happy. Toddlers by nature are selfish; they have yet to develop real empathy. While adults will be excited about the new baby, toddlers may have more trouble adjusting. Special gifts help toddlers cope with all the new things headed their way.
Before you give a sibling a gift, check with the new parents for their input. They'll be able to tell you if they like the idea or prefer not to indulge their toddler. If they approve, they can give you a good idea how their child feels about becoming a big brother or sister and what kinds of gifts might be best.
If you plan to give a gift, you can give it to the toddler:
- Before baby is born
- While the parents are in labor and delivery
- When he first meets his new sibling
- When you bring a gift for the baby
A Special Occasion
The arrival of a new baby is a joyous time and can be filled with a mix of emotions for everyone involved. Gifts for every member of the new family, including toddler siblings spread the happiness and help with adjustments to new routines and roles.