DIY Sensory Toy: The Perfect First Birthday Gift

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Charlie’s FIRST birthday is in less than two weeks. Cue the emotions! I can’t even believe my summer birthday baby is almost one. If you’re like me, you struggle with what to do for a baby/new toddler as a “gift”. It seems silly to me to spend much money on a baby for obvious reasons. (I DO believe in cards, but I will get to that in a bit.) She has everything she NEEDS and she doesn’t have a concept of what a gift is. Fear no more! I have an awesome DIY gift for you that is perfect for a brand new One-Year-Old that will cost little to nothing depending on what you already have on hand. You probably see tons of sensory toys out there on shelves for babies, including various things that have tags and strings attached to encourage babies to explore different textures and sights. Sensory toys are great for development, which is why they have become so popular. I will teach you how to make one in less than 30 minutes.

Let’s get started. First, you will need these things:

  • scrap ribbon/fabric/yarn/whatever
  • wooden ring
  • scissors
  • glue gun and glue sticks (optional)

I happen to have all of these things in my craft baskets. I tend to save extra ribbon etc. in a little basket for future project possibilities. Thank goodness I did, right?! The glue gun is if you want to double-secure your knots. Here we go.

1 | Tie your scraps on the wooden ring however you want. I thought it would be cool to braid the yarn around the ring and the felt. I tied the rest of the ribbons in a knot.

2 | Trim the edges so that they are neat.

3 | Repeat with all the scraps your heart desires until you have several different textures tied around the wooden ring.

That’s it! Was that not literally the easiest DIY present, ever? I have told you before that I don’t do anything that is difficult or time consuming. This project took me about 15 minutes. As a seasoned mama, I know that my kids are usually happiest with the cheapest, most basic toys.

Now, to wrap it up! Since Charlie is just one, she hasn’t figured out how to rip open wrapping paper, so I chose an adorable gift bag and tissue paper from American Greetings. It will be easy for her to look inside and pull out her present!

I mentioned before that I DO believe in cards, even for a baby. I admit that cards are kind of my love language, and almost nothing makes me happier than a handwritten note. I plan to write a card to my kids every year on their birthdays, even before they can read. The reason is so they can save them all and read them one day. I still have letters and cards from my mom dating to when she was pregnant with me!

Since Grayson is going into first grade and loves to practice writing, he joined in the fun and wrote in a card for Charlie this year.

I can’t wait to keep these cards for her to read someday and for her to open her new sensory toy! Don’t stress yourselves out on the next One-Year-Old you have to get a gift for. They are way easier than you think! What is something simple you have done for a baby or small child that they ended up LOVING?






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