The top 5 baby/toddler toys of 2014 – chosen by mums

These days there are so many toys to choose from that shopping for our little ones can become a whole lot less pleasurable than it should be.

There is nothing more annoying than choosing a toy for our child only to have it pushed aside because an old cardboard box or the contents of a handbag are far more interesting right!? 

Before you head to the store or add yet another nice looking to your Amazon wish list, have a look at Babycenter.com’s “Mums’ Picks Awards”, which list the year’s top five toys as voted by thousands of mums who rated dozens of baby and toddler products on quality, value, ease of use, and style. Check it out:

1.    Sophie the Giraffe – described as a great-looking, simple toy that’s top quality. The legs and nubby horns are easy for a teething baby to manipulate, and her sweet squeak is just loud enough. Made of natural rubber, Sophie’s pleasing to tender gums. Another plus: no small parts to break off or clean.

2.    Green Sprouts Stacking Cups – kids love stacking and these cups earned first place among mums in the value, quality, and space-saving categories. More plusses: They’re virtually indestructible, easy to clean, free of BPA and other nasty chemicals, and can also be used in the bathtub (the holes make for easy drainage) or sandbox.

3.    My First Green Toys First Keys – received high praise for looks, quality and ease of use. Free of BPA, phthalates, and other chemicals, the four colourful pieces are just the right size for little hands. Mums appreciate that they’re dishwasher safe and enjoy the satisfying (and gentle to adult ears) rattle.

4.    Munchkin Mozart Magic Cube – the six-inch cube is a great start in music. It lets your baby be the composer: He can combine five instruments (harp, French horn, piano, flute, and violin) to create eight Mozart masterpieces. Even random banging teaches a tot about sounds, and his power to elicit them with his own two hands. The bright colours appeal to babies; the soft, rounded corners make it safe; and the durable plastic means encores for years to come.

5.    Melissa & Doug Pull-back vehicles – were given top marks for value, good looks, ease of use, and quality. The grasping and pulling boosts fine-motor skills and hand-eye coordination; steering and chasing after them helps large muscle groups and coordination, too. They’re made of soft fabric, are washable, and the wheelie insert is removable. Parents of multiples appreciate that there are four in a set – enough to share.

All of the toys are available online. And to read mums’ reviews on the top five toys, CLICK HERE, and visit Babycenter.com/baby-product-awards to find out more about the “Mums’ Picks Awards”.