The holidays are coming! I’ve been a Professional Auntie for nearly 13 years now. My niephlets range in age from 9 months to 15 years, and one of the things that has solidified my role is a promise to all of their parents to never, ever give their children anything that 1) needs batteries or 2) makes noise. Toys that beep, light up, squawk, or move are the purview of grandparents, who ostensibly have a house where they can keep said items and thus spare the parents the literal headache. Plus, grandparents can get away with almost anything.
Enter the book-and-toy gift, a staple in my house. I recently spoke to a friend who is an art director for children’s books. He said that when ebooks came on the scene, publishers were afraid that physical children’s books would be the first to disappear. They quickly realized that this fear was unfounded; in addition to parents wanting to separate tablet or screen time from reading, the act of reading a physical book is a unique bonding activity that children were requesting.
With that in mind, I’ve searched for books that one could easily pair with a toy in order to compose the perfect analog gift for the children in your life.
Note: the prices listed are for just the toy part of each book and toy pairing!
Uncle John’s City Garden by Bernette G. Ford, illustrated by Frank Morrison
Beloved author Bernette G. Ford passed away this year, and her final work was published posthumously. Uncle John’s City Garden is a lovely tale of urban gardening. Pair it with a child-sized garden playset from Cute Stone on Amazon. $50.
I Color Myself Different by Colin Kaepernick, illustrated by Eric Wilkerson
Wretched Waterpark (Sinister Summer series, book 1) by Kiersten White
Hopefully this robot won’t squash your kid’s teacher, but you never know! This programmable robot kit encourages kids to learn a bit of code
as well as attempt to take over the world. Wait, what? ($30)
Choosing gifts for little ones can be tough, but I hope this has given you a good starting point. You might also want to check out The Perfect Bookish Gifts for Kids and Great Book Subscription Boxes for Kids.
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