mindful living, effortless style

Gift Guide: Kids on the Move

Installment #3 of 2012’s Christmas Gift Guide was born purely out of necessity.  With two rambunctious kiddos bouncing off the walls around here, I’m asking everyone in the family to think about gifting active toys this year!  Below is a carefully curated collection of my favorite picks for expelling energy both indoors and out.

1) Hop on Air Hop Balls $22.42 – My sister’s getting these for the kids this year, per my request.  I think these bouncy ride-on balls will be a fantastic way for the kids to get some energy out when stuck inside. (So much better then running around the living room and kitchen until someone inevitably gets hurt.)  We’re getting a 15″ version for 2 year old S and an 18″ ball for 4 year old C (both of whom are pretty tall for their age).


2) Monster Feet Stilts $12.89 – I used to play on stilts like these in elementary school gym class and I remember fighting my friends over them.  The price is super cheap so be sure to get a pair for everyone.


3) Rody Horse $49.99 – We have a family membership to our local kids museum and hit it up on a regular basis.  Every time we do, S beelines for Rody.  This is another excellent toy for burning energy and kids often like to use him for elaborate dramatic play scenarios as well.  Best of all, his durability is legendary.


4) Wobble Deck Extreme Balancing Game $35.25 – I’ve actually got a couple of balance boards on this list.  I just think they’re such a smart way to be active in a small, contained space.  This one is an electronic version that features four fun balance games that challenge the mind and body. The original Wobble Deck is Winner of the Oppenheim Best Toy Award and selected as a Best Toy by Better Homes and Gardens.

5) Radio Flyer My 1st Scooter $52.90 – S discovered this when we went camping with friends last summer (you can read more about it here).  The clever design (two wheels in the front) made it simple for her to master even at barely 2 years old.  But don’t get me wrong – her big brother loved it too.  This is a versatile ride on toy that will get lots of use from kids not ready for bikes and accomplished cyclists alike.

6) Hop Around Steps, Set of 30 $39.95 – My kids are also getting these this year.  I came across them at one of my favorite sites for educational toys while looking for balance toys.  I like how they can be used to set up different obstacle courses each time they’re brought out.  They’re also by far the best price I could find – most toys like these are sold to be used in classrooms and are priced as such!

7) Alex Toys Monkey Balance Board $19.44 – This is the stripped down version of the above balance board.  It appeals to my purist heart (and my disdain for having to listen to noisy toys all day).  Plus I think the happy monkey will make the kids smile.

8) Strider Balance Bike $109 – What can I say?  I think the strider balance bike will probably make it onto my gift guide as long as I’m writing them.  Both of my kids have been zooming around on bikes since they were 2 thanks to this genius idea taking away the pedals and letting the kids pick up their feet and balance when they’re ready.  I also really love how light weight the strider version is.  Both kids could easily pick it up and carry it around as soon as they started using it.

9) Kid-O Bilibo $24.84 – This thing is kind of silly looking but my daughter loves it.  There are a couple at her toddler group and she always spends a considerable amount of time bopping happily away on one.  It’s like a one person teeter-totter, so I can see why a kid would think that was fun.  I think the bright colors, small footprint, and reasonable price are quite fun myself.

10) PlasmaCar $61.17 – Check out the stellar reviews on this one and you’ll be sold.  It’s a cool space-age car that’s powered solely by wiggling the steering wheel.  This multi-award winning toy is one that will be enjoyed by kids of all ages for many years.

11) Little Tikes Pillow Racer $25.17 – This is two toys the kids love in one: a pillow pet and a ride on toy.  It’s super cool how you can actually remove the stuffed animal from the wheel base when you want to cuddle.  Kids love that when kids are riding, the wheels aren’t limited to forward and backwards motion, but instead allow 360 degree turns.

12) Diggin JumpStart Trampoline $58 – Every day around 4:30 PM I wonder why we haven’t bought one of these yet.  C’s buddy has one and he loves to jump and jump and jump on it.  Chances are very high Santa will be bringing the kids a trampoline this year and if he does it’ll be this one due to the good reviews and space saving design.

13) Diggin Jr. Big Boom Bat and Tee $13.95 – I actually did a video review of this over a year ago as part of a contest.  I was really impressed with how well C (then not yet three) was able to use the oversized ball, tee, and bat.  This is a great set for giving your kids a successful introduction to baseball and, because it’s inflatable, you can use it indoors without breaking your stuff.  It’s also surprisingly durable.  We’ve had ours for over a year and it’s still intact.

14) Big Boomer $17.14 – This is by the same makers as the tee ball set and my parents bought it for the kids by coincidence.  Just like with the other set, the kids loved it and had lots of success with the soft, over-sized equipment.

15) Ezy-Roller $99 – We did a giveaway with a large toy store last year and the owner wanted to give this away because he said it’s his best-selling toy ever.  That right there says a lot.  This is another fun non-bike option for getting some exercise outside.  It’s also a great pick for bigger kids.

So that’s my list.  If you have a kid on the go in your family, I guarantee there’s something above they’ll love.  If not, be sure to click below and check out the rest of our Christmas gift guides!

*Post contains affiliate links