Beautiful Schleich animals, made in Germany, from $7. Such great quality, they feel like adorable heirlooms.
Kids’ flashlight, $16 for six. Anton LOVES his flashlight and even packs it when we travel. Fun for evening walks, sleepovers, shadow puppets, reading in bed, pretending to be a spy, whatever other games and adventures he comes up with. (Could be cool to add an invisible ink pen.)
This dog game has actual rules, but we often just shuffle the deck, put down one card each, and play “who’s the cutest?” until we reach a final winner. They have cats and dinosaurs, too, of course. $10.
Kid stationery, where you fill in the blanks. I used to write my own basic versions for my kids when they were younger, but this set is SO much more beautiful than mine ever were! $25.
When my kids need to get excited about books again — or a friend tells me her child’s dreading reading time — my tried-and-true recommendation is The Baby-Sitters Club graphic novels. They also have a Little Sister series, which is great for slightly younger kids (I’d say around second/third grade?).
Bouncy ball, $13. It’s always fun to have something immediately gratifying to play with — things you don’t have to build or figure out first. A bouncy ball is exactly that!
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