There are many occasions for which we might seek to buy toys…holidays, birthdays, graduations, and other special events. These days though, walking into a big box store or shopping on Amazon to buy toys can be a dangerous thing. Foreign made toys can be downright unsafe if you don’t know the company or what they stand for and you might end up buying toys with toxic chemicals or lead paint. I am pretty sure that poisoning the children in our lives is NOT what we had in mind, so I have started compiling a list of the some of the better toy alternatives available to us. If you have any ideas to add please leave me a comment and let me know!
Wooden Tool Set – This USA made tool set is beautiful. An oak carrying box holds a toy hammer, screwdriver, saw, a square, old-fashioned hand drill, and a 6 inch ruler. The tools are made of various solid woods including walnut, maple, and oak, with a natural oil finish. It is perfect for the little Mr. Fix-It in your life. Made in the USA.
Roy Toy Log Cabin Set – This set is very similar to Lincoln Logs (which my sons love) and it is made in the USA since the 1930s. All pieces are 100% hand cut wood. The red wooden gables and green roof planks are stained with non-toxic dyes. It is an American classic!
Wooden Doll Cradle – Little girls love their dolls and a wooden cradle is much more sturdy and safe than the a plastic one. This 1930s-style wooden cradle will be a charming addition to any play “household.” Handmade and handpainted in Morocco by Zid Zid Kids. Includes embroidered doll mattress, pillow, and blanket.
Wooden Sushi Bento Set – I got this for my kids and it is soooo cute. Although it is made in China it does come from a company in the natural toys industry that has a very trustworthy record, Melissa and Doug. It has wooden sushi, California rolls, soy sauce, wasabi, chopsticks, and cutting tools. The foods fit together with Velcro so that your little chef can cut them into pieces.
The Little Engine That Could Train Set – This train set is adorable and made in the USA so forget about that other train named Thomas, although this set can be fitted to that one. Includes the engine, three cars, and red caboose. Buy it along with the classic book and you have a great gift!
Wooden Lawnmower – Made in the USA. A unique old fashioned push lawnmower design handcrafted from hard maple with bright colorful wooden balls contained securely within a cage of matching colored dowels.
If you are planning on getting a wooden kitchen set or you already have one, there are many wooden food or cloth products that you might like. My daughter is getting a lovely wooden kitchen set. It is in the basement just waiting to be opened and filled with faux food. Here are some of the food options I like:
German Design also has some great wooden food from milk, to eggs, to mushrooms, to onions. They are adorable! Lots of “raw” or “vegan” food options for families that eat along those lines.
Haba is another company I love and they have a soft cloth sandwich that I recently discovered. Sandwich fixings include 4 slices of deli meat, 4 slices of cheese, 2 slices of bread, 1 slice tomato and 1 lettuce leaf….all cloth.
Pick Your Own Wool Food – Pick from a carrot, pumpkin, peapod, tomato or corn on the cob made from wool. The price is awesome.
Käthe Kruse “Nicki” Baby – These washable cloth dolls are adorable and they come in pink and blue. Dressed in a one piece velour jumper and colorful hat, these dolls are the perfect size for small hands to grasp and hold. They are made in Germany.
Mini It’s Me Waldorf Dolls – The Waldorf dolls are all individually handcrafted and not mass produced. They are warm and cuddly, tempting children to place them in their arms. The neutral features help to develop a child’s imagination to see the doll laugh, cry, sleep, be sad or happy. These dolls are also made in Germany. And don’t forget the Waldorf Doll Stroller.
Classic ABC Blocks – What child doesn’t have blocks like these at some point? These are made in the USA and they are beautifully crafted and sure to last for a long time. These deluxe alphabets are patterned after classic blocks from the Golden Age of Toys. Sold worldwide since 1983, Uncle Goose ABC blocks are made in Michigan from basswood and child-safe, non-toxic ink.
Other Toys and Items
Fortamajig – The Fortamajig allows children to create anything in any space! Imagine building a fort, teepee, tunnel, canopy, out of one ingenious square of nylon material. It is extremely portable with no hard pieces to break or lose. The Fortamajig is the ultimate washable, portable, storable and durable all in one play space. Comes in 3 colors: purple, blue and green. My 7 year old is sooo getting this!
I hope this gives you some ideas for your natural child…do you have any YOU want to add? Comment below.