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Build a Baby or Toddler Library Gift Basket: What to Include
Why a Book Gift Basket?
If you have a special little toddler in your life, you may be at a loss as to what to get him or her for a special occasion, like a birthday or Christmas. Toddlers are so active, so energetic, so curious, and change so quickly that it can be hard to guess what they might like. But there is no guessing in this: children love books.
Babies are born with an almost instinctual affinity for books. It may be that when they are read to, they are held very closely and allowed to enjoy the warmth and the soothing music of a voice. Children learn through books, are entertained by books, and enjoy interacting with books. What could be a better present? Build your special toddler a library gift basket. It is sure to be well-used.
Tips for Reading to Baby
Buy vs. Make
You can buy premade library gift baskets for children, but they tend to be very expensive. A Disney Princess book basket, for instance, can cost over $110. A Baby Einstein gift set fetches over $230. This is very pricey, especially when you can assemble your own terrific book basket for much less.
One of the great advantages of children’s books is that they are relatively inexpensive, and they are widely available. And an advantage of assembling your own basket is that it will be every bit as entertaining and educational as Disney’s or Baby Einstein’s, at a fraction of the price.
Choosing a Theme
What should you include in your baby book gift basket? This, of course, is up to you, and really, up to the child. It is helpful to choose a theme around which to build your basket. Start by asking yourself what your special toddler likes. Horses? Eric Carle books? Butterflies and bugs? Princesses and fairies? Trucks and cars? Dinosaurs? If you need help, ask mom or dad what the child’s favorite subject is or in which type of toys or books he is most interested. This will be very helpful in assembling the rest of the basket.
The Baby Valedictorian Deluxe Baby Einstein Library is a gorgeous library basket that contains DVDs, CDs, board books, rattle books, bath books, a glow in the dark book, a musical plush toy, and a storage tin. The set costs about $250; if you don’t want to buy it, you can use it for inspiration! Let’s say the theme you’ve chosen is farm animals. You could include:
- Little Scholastic’s Petting Farm DVD, a favorite with parents and kids. ($10.50)
- Animals at the Farm/ Animales de la Granja from English and Spanish Foundations Audio Learning Series. This is an audio CD that features songs and stories in both English and Spanish. ($10)
- Farm Animals/Wild Animals Padded Board Book Set, which contains 5 CDs and 2 padded board books featuring 10 different farm animals. Full of fun facts and songs. ($20.50)
- Farm Fun! Bath Book and Squirting Tub Toy. Kids will love this floating bath book and adorable cow toy. ($8).
- Baby Animals on the Farm Board Book Set. The set has 9 books, each dedicated to a different farm animal. They’re cute and toddler-sized. ($9)
- Earlyears Baby Farm Friends Bowling. Work on motor skills and animal recognition with this fun bowling game. ($16)
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The grand total for the deluxe baby gift baskets we’ve assembled is $74, and the basket includes several books, CDs, and toys. You could cut the cost by forgoing certain items or replacing them with less expensive items.
In fact, you could make a basket with only the bowling set and the set of 9 board books or the DVD and the bath book and toy. There is no right or wrong, especially when it comes to children’s books.