Parents of older children may not be surprised to read this confession: as my daughter gets older, shopping for safe toys – holiday presents and otherwise – is getting harder. Even for an “expert” like me. I find this endlessly infuriating. And confusing.
This holiday season, I have been trying to follow my own advice as I do (pretty minimal) holiday shopping. I’ve asked the grandparents to buy her tickets to shows and classes. So in January, she’ll start a dance class at a cute spot across the street. Great. She’ll also go see some of her favorite kids’ music with us (haven’t listened to Elizabeth Mitchell yet? Do!).
In years past, I mainly curated whatever toys she was getting, based on what was developmentally appropriate and what she was most fond of playing with at friends’ houses. I have tried to find safe, hard wood, preferably local(ish)ly made versions of things like train sets, doll houses, musical instruments, blocks, play fruits and veggies for her play kitchen, and more. Any of these items that are painted only come from certain companies, crosschecked on HealthyStuff.org….