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6 Tips For Buying Birthday Gifts For Kids

by Melissa & Doug.

Need some ideas for birthday gifts for the kids in your life? We asked some of our co-workers for their favorite, go-to birthday gifts for kids of all ages. These are the tried-and-true gift ideas that have worked for them and will work for you! Our fans tell us that Melissa & Doug toys are a hit with both kids and their grown-ups, for their playing power and their staying power. With their focus on open-ended, hands-on play and their ability to grow with kids through many ages and stages, Melissa & Doug toys make for gifts you’ll feel great about giving!

The Best Birthday Gifts for Kids of All Ages

Toy-Buying Tip #1: Shop What’s New

My go-to strategy for buying toys for nieces, nephews, or friends’ kids is to browse the What’s New page and buy them the toys that are the newest! That way I know they probably don’t already own it. In terms of favorite toys for gift-buying, I like to find ones that can easily be stored away, like these really cute play tents. There are a few different play tent themes that match different kids’ personalities.”

— Carrie Bova, who works in email marketing at Melissa & Doug, and is mom to two young children with a third on the way

Birthday Gift for 3-Year-Olds, 4-Year-Olds, and 5-Year-Olds

These play tents were a hit for all different ages when I bought them as Christmas gifts for all the kids in my life!

— Carrie Bova

Toy-Buying Tip #2: Think About Themes

“I like to do themes when buying birthday gifts. Melissa & Doug is known for themes such as farm, dinosaur, wildlife, ocean, and fairy tale. For example, for a dino-obsessed kid, I might buy a set that includes a dinosaur-themed puzzle, stamp set, and an activity pad.”

— Traci Mosser, who works on the brand team, and is mom to two kids

Birthday Gifts for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers

“I always give the Rainbow Stacker for babies and toddlers and the Stainless Steel Pots & PansCutting Food, or Magnetic Chalkboard/Dry Erase Board for toddlers and older kids.”

— Sara Erwin, who works on the creative team at Melissa & Doug, and has two young daughters
6 Tips For Buying Birthday Gifts For Kids
Rainbow Stacker by Melissa & Doug – please contact us for more information

I love that it’s a classic toy, babies can even chew on it when they’re teething! Also, it looks great in any nursery or playroom on display!

— Sara Erwin

Another playroom staple … I have not met a kid who doesn’t love this pretend play set!

— Sara Erwin

Parents love it because it doesn’t take up too much room and you can move it from table to floor … so many options for play to keep kids entertained. It’s also awesome for virtual learning!

— Sara Erwin

Toy-Buying Tip #3: Tunnels Are Tons of Fun

The Melissa & Doug tunnels are great because they are fun for indoor and outdoor play. Kids get so creative with them. The camp chairs are great gifts too!

— John Freyer, who is on the ecommerce team at Melissa & Doug, and is dad to four young girls

Please contact us for more information on the Melissa & Doug tunnels and camp chairs.

Toy-Buying Tip #4: Water Wow Always Wows

I love Water Wow. I always think back to the times I’ve been in the car or on planes with my own little ones, trying to give them a creative, mess-free way to play!

— Jess Trichilo, who is on the HR team at Melissa & Doug, and is mom to four children

Toy-Buying Tip #5: Don’t Forget the Guests

I love using Water Wow as birthday party favors.

— Jill Germano, who is on the brand team at Melissa & Doug, and mom to two young boys

Another huge plus to this gift is that it can be used over and over!

— Jess Trichilo

I also love our role play outfits. I recently gave the construction worker outfit to a little boy whose dad works in the field. Now he can dress up to be just like dad!

— Jess Trichilo

Toy-Buying Tip #6: When in Doubt, Opt for a Play Food Set

Kids love the realistic details in the Melissa & Doug pretend play food sets. Although they say age 3+, even older kids enjoy playing with the comprehensive sets. With their high-quality construction, these sets are sure to last for many years of play. Some favorites: