Environmentally Conscious Toddler Gift Guide!

No matter what holiday you celebrate, I think we can all agree that things are becoming very materialistic and people are becoming overly greedy. Presents are being bought in excess and the ‘meaning of the season’ has become new toys, electronics and clothes. Supporting huge corporations and adding ever more to the piles of waste. On top of that, most children’s toys these days break within a week and are made by children the same age or younger then the children we are gifting them too, in foreign countries, getting paid .07 cents a day.

And just for you gals and guys, I thought I’d compile a small gift guide of some of my favorite gift ideas for toddlers the holidays this year!!

The best option would be to make things yourselves. However, I know not everyone is artistically inclined or is able to sew/knit/crochet. If you knit or crochet, check out Raverly for tons of free patterns for anything you can think of! Great knit/crochet ideas for toddlers/older babies would be blocks, balls, stuffed animals, mittens, hats or slippers. If you sew check out Pinterest or All Free Sewing for patterns and ideas! I think I’ll be sewing some little stuffed veggies this year for Delilah, and putting them in a little garden basket. I may even make a little garden bed cushion she can ‘plant’ the veggies in and pick them into her basket!

Now, for those of you that can’t, don’t have the time or aren’t able to make all homemade gifts, I’ve found a few super awesome gifts to buy!

Batsiranai Sharing Doll
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Delilah is actually getting one of these from her grandma this year. It’s handmade in Zimbabwe and certified fair trade (meaning it was made by adults who were all fairly compensated!). Besides the fact that it’s adorable and is baby wearing a little baby in a sling (!) whenever you purchase one, they give the same doll to a child in a heavily HIV/AIDS infected infected area! So really, you’re buying your child a doll, then buying one for a less fortunate child who may not even have a toy!

Handmade, personalized blocks

I came across these the other day, and fell in love! You can get any amount of letters you want and you can pick which letters! The whole alphabet, numbers, pictures, your child’s name, blank blocks, shapes. It’s really cool! The awesome thing, is the family who makes them, also uses organic oils and beeswax to coat them using materials they grow themselves on their farm! How cool is that?? They are completely safe an non-toxic so children who are teething can enjoy them as well as older children! PLUS they donate to the Peace Corps with every purchase!

A basket of fresh, farmer’s market veggies

Farmers Market Basket of Veggies

I love this play food! Make a play ‘farmer’s market’ in the house and buy veggies in your basket! You can pick whatever veggies you like for in the basket! Totally homemade by ‘Locally Sewn Produce‘ (see what she did there!!) based out of Iowa. Plus, she has a ton of other options in her shop if you want to add some other veggies.

Wooden TrucksWooden Toy Trucks and Wooden Toy Cars Wooden Toys Organic Walnut Set of 6

These awesome trucks and cars are hand crafted from quality wood and finished with beeswax! This particular link is for a whole collection of trucks, but they can all be purchased individually for those on a budget! I think they are so pretty and we might be getting Delilah one of these from me and her dad this season!

Felted Number Eggs
Needle Felted Eggs with numbers, Made to order

Learns numbers and learn where eggs come from! Put these little guys under a toy chicken and have them count the eggs as they collect them. Perhaps put them with the farmer’s market veggies I mentioned earlier! Or have them pretend with you while you prepare eggs for breakfast. Plus, there is a little bell in each egg! So they can make noise while they play, what’s better then noise??

Do you have a favorite gift idea? Do you make gifts yourself? Do you make gifts and sell them? Feel free to link them in the comments!

I definitely urge you to go at least partially handmade for the holidays this year!

Til next time,

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Guess who’s back?!

Yup! You guessed it! Me!! Did you miss me???

I missed you folks!!

As you may recall I told you the day i came back you’d have to deal with a wedding post….. So here it is =)
(I’ll keep it short!)

Me and my wonderful husband got married on September 6th at the district court with just our parents and my grandparents. We didn’t want a huge ceremony and we really didn’t like the idea having tons of people watching us at such an intimate time. So we kept it small.

Then Sunday the 8th we had a reception picnic with all our family and a few close friends. We went to a local state park with a beautiful overlook. Its a 350 foot cliff from which you can see the neighboring state. Its so nice and quiet.

We did a build your own pita bar with cooked chicken and a variety of homemade sauces and veggies to put on. We had homemade organic applesauce and honey sweetened peaches I picked and canned myself. We also had an (oragnic!) popcorn bar where you filled a bag with popcorn, added seasonings and shook up the bag for flavored popcorn. Yummy =) Everything was pink and black since we’re very non-traditional. I made centerpieces from mason jars with ribbons around them filled with bamboo, a sparkly fake feather and pink water beads. I also made up-cycled bowls from old records I got at a thrift store to put the favors in. It ended up being really cute! It was nice and small but fun at the same time.

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My lovely husband and I. My awesome cousin is a cosmetologist and did my hair. I don’t think my hair has ever looked that nice in my life.

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Kicking the groom for good luck?

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Cake fight! My amazing sister-in-law made us a beautiful cake!! (And was our photographer!!)

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I LOVE my dress =) Charlotte from PixiePocket on Etsy handmade it for me to my exact measurements and specifications. She did a wonderful job. It fit me perfectly and was actually really comfy. If you ever need a spectacular dress for any reason I definitely suggest her.

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The beautiful Delilah Raine!

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I am SO glad I decided to get a few pictures nursing in my wedding gown. They turned out so beautiful and its such a awesome thing to nurse a baby.

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And I couldn’t possibly do a wedding post without sharing this. My sister crocheted us this blanket. For those of you that don’t know, this is the TARDIS from the TV series Dr. Who, a sci-fi show from England. My favorite TV show. Its the coolest thing ever. I almost had a heart attack when I opened it up. I will sleep under it until I die. ♥

Thank you for sharing in our special day!! And thank you for sticking around while I was gone for a week =) Gold star for all of you!!

~(Mrs.!!) Courtney, The Crunchy Delinquent