Top 5 Must-Have Toddler Products

Like many families with small children living in small homes, our home lives in chaos. Our three year old daughter who won’t hesitate to practice the alphabet on the walls may graduate to Kindergarten before age four. Our baby girl who turned one has recently decided she will only take steps for strawberries, but I’ve also learned this doesn’t mean she will eat the strawberries.  This is where the dog comes in.  Although we are grateful to our less than disciplined bulldog, Biscuit, for washing the floors, I would prefer she stop shedding so I may offer the vacuum a vacation. 

Over the last few years and especially during the occasional storms of chaos, I have learned a few fun facts about young people.  Toddlers and babies are fascinated with non toys they see their parents using like kitchen utensils, credit cards, all cords and scissors (all things dangerous), and remote controls.

I have observed how some parents will quickly remove the non toy, and in some cases this is the only option.  Where the toy doesn’t present an immediate threat, however, like blades from scissors, I prefer to watch them before taking the object away.

With all of their toys and activities, I am always observing looking for how they do and what they do. Whether they are playing with toys or non toys, I look for what works now, and what will keep working for as long as possible. 

Below is a must-have list of durable and useful toddler products that we love. 


1. Deuter Schmusebär Backpack

The Schmuseär backpacks are the perfect accessory for your little one heading for new adventures.  Whether you’re going to the pool, the park, the zoo, or the mall, this little pack will hold their essentials or whatever toy or non toy they want to stuff in there.  The fit is perfect, and your toddler will LOVE wearing it knowing they are in charge.  Let them express their independence with their first Deuter Schmusebär Backpack.  (Schmusebär means cuddlebear in German).

Don’t worry, they are supremely durable and come in many different colors!


2. Y-Bike for 9 – 36 Months

The YBike is a must-have for babies and toddlers.  The Ybike for 9 – 36 months offers optimal stability and balance.  Unlike bouncers and jumpers, your nine month old can actually practice balance, co-ordination as well as experience freedom on wheels.  No helmet needed inside, and it rolls just fine on carpet (normal, not super tall thick carpet).  Plus, you can choose from many colors.


3. Weighted Straw Cup

Have you ever observed your toddler drinking milk from a straw cup all the way to the end?  It’s common for them to start tipping it like they would a bottle.  The milk will leave the bottom where the bottom of the straw ends.  The straw will dry up. 

The remedy? You can fill up the cup that isn’t empty to appease your tot, or you can try instructing them to keep it down. Or of course you can offer a different style of cup or simply take the cup away before it ends up on the floor leaking everywhere.

Another great solution is the weighted straw cup.  This type of straw cup allows the straw to fall with the tipping cup.  With the weight at the bottom of the straw, a tip of the cup with common force will still allow your tot to sip the liquid through the straw.   

There are two well known companies that make weighted straw cups, Munchkin and Lollaland. 

Try these sites: www.lollaland.com

 4. Clearance Nike and Puma Sneakers

 A comfortable, well made pair of sneakers are essential.  Well made sneakers are essential for an on-the-go baby learning to walk as well as a toddler who never stops. When looking for great shoes (for girls especially), avoid support-less, often plastic options at Target, Walmart, Gymboree, etc. Instead, go straight to clearance Nike or Puma. 

Do you own a pair of well made sneakers?  Well made sneakers make walking and running outside far more comfortable and enjoyable.  The same goes for your tot, and especially for your baby learning to walk. We know toddlers and babies grow out of shoes fast. Still, by fast, they may likely stay in them for a month or two.  You can find clearance Nike shows for under $20, and in some cases, under $10.  If you live in a metropolitan area, check out a Nike Outlet where they run $5 infant shoe sales.

Try these sites: Nike clearance: & Puma clearance:

5. InMotion Albums

Perhaps one of the most, if not THE most common phrase we hear as mothers of young children is: “they grow up so fast!” The special time and privilege we have with our children moves so quickly that most parents decide to capture and preserve their memories in one form or another. 

Most choose to make a photo book and a baby memory book because it offers an ideal way to look back.  When you envision all the ways you can make your toddler and baby memory books, imagine adding to the same photo book videos as well as digital images of your toddler reading to you or your baby speaking for the first time.  Imagine listening and watching to video in the same photo book that holds your favorite photos as well as your child’s hand prints.

InMotion Albums is a MUST-HAVE memory book because it is the only book that lets you play and hear with your videos alongside your pictures.  

Take your custom photo book to a whole new level. For the first time ever, you can have your pictures and keepsakes alongside your videos and digital images. InMotion will be launching soon. Join the newsletter or reach out to find out how you can get started on your InMotion Album during the 2017 holiday season.