Whole Parenting Family

9 Favorite Baby Toys for the First Year

9 toys for your baby

As I’ve been going through like the mad woman that I am and purging out toys, books, clothing we aren’t using regularly or frankly, that I loathe, I’m realizing there are a few staples from the first years of my older children’s now long-past childhoods that the baby loves. That I love. That really, after three kids, I would buy, full-price. At the snap of a credit card against the counter. That fast.

Over on my baby registry post I list out the must-haves for babies in general, but these are my real workhorse toys that I am going to put my stamp of approval on. Big stamp. Me. Right there.

1) Silicone teething ring

It has different textures along its ridges. It can be clung and clutched. It can be easily wiped off after rolling away from you on an airplane. We have it in in yellow & I bought in on a whim at the coop one day many years ago. Love it! I think this link sells a two pack. Worth it!

2) Wooden rolling wheel

We bought one similar to this when I was first pregnant with SuperBoy. One of those “oh, look, it’s wooden and I’m feeling nesty” buys. It has rolled its weight in gold. Yes, my children also bang it on their faces, but it rolls and jingles and the insides do NOT come out. That’s right. No fetching on the parents part.

3) Indestructible books: Baby Faces

The avid teether loves these and the older babe left alone with something that could be eaten in millllliseconds loves them even more. But I love them best of all because: they’re indestructible. Literally.

4) Sophie the giraffe teether

She’s not overrated, even if you think she’s overpriced. We loved one into the ground and are in the midst of loving her cousin toy that my sis-in-law gifted us. She squeaks. And that’s awesome for babies.

5) Haba wooden triangles

They slide around and are a great non-noise but kinda containable item for when you’re somewhere your baby needs entertainment but no squeaking. See above for the squeak factor.

6) Toofeze Baby Teether

The stainless steel button on this makes the sad gums happy and it is NOT for putting in the freezer. It’s cold all the time. Naturally. And the shape is just what you want to hang on to if you’re grabby and little. This one we only found out about two kids in, but it’s a keeper.

7) Nesting blocks

Stacking, gnawing, pictures, animals, alphabet, you learn it all.

8) Big rubber ball

Rolling back & forth? Headbutting? Walking around with? We love big rubber balls.

9) Plan Toy Stacking Ring

Stack & repeat. Roll & chase. Wood so it’s pretty hearty. LOVE love love.


Hit me with your toys for the first year? Amazon links so if you buy through me I get a cent or three 😉


  1. Caitlyn on May 14, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    That teether sounds amazing! The stainless steel one. We have quite the rough teether right now. Nothing is enough! Except her brothers sippy cup. That keeps her happy. 🙂 Also, ikea has excellent wooden toys for anyone who has one in their city. We have their wagon and ring stacker and just love them!

    • Natural Mama Nell on May 15, 2015 at 11:58 pm

      The teether has been the best! We have an ikea but actually inherited a number of their toys via cousins. Good call!

  2. Tara on May 14, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    Oooh my goodness that stainless steel teether is what we’ve been looking for! Our daughter used to climb under one of our tables and try to chew on the metal leg. An actual teether is far preferable to my child eating my furniture.

    • Natural Mama Nell on May 15, 2015 at 11:58 pm

      Like a puppy. My kids too!!

  3. jean on May 18, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    I’ve been binge reading your blog during nighttime nursing sessions. Thank you. 🙂

  4. […] But first, a more recent post of 5 essentials I LOVE having as a mom. And the nine BEST toys for baby before 1 year. […]