As Boo grows up, her interest in toys grows right along with her. We have moved through a huge assortment of car toys over the past 19 months. Unfortunately, this means retiring some favorites as they no longer keep her interested. Below are some of our favorites up until she was 10 months old.
I feel the need to include this disclaimer. Please keep in mind that current car safety recommendations in the US suggest the use of soft toys that would not cause injury in the event of an accident. No after market products (to include toys) should be attached to the car seat. That being said, I am not a car seat expert and I do not always use soft toys for my daughter.
Alright now…onto the toys! I recommend paying close attention to your child’s individual interests when choosing toys for a road trip. If the child would be interested in the item at home, they will likely be interested on the road. That being said, I am going to break this age group down a bit further.
Age: 0-3 months
Interests: Nursing, snuggling, sleeping (in no particular order)
Activities: Pacifiers and lots of them! At this age Boo did a lot of sleeping and wasn’t really interested in toys. When she woke up from her lengthy sleeps, we found a place to stop and nurse/cuddle or popped a pacifier in her mouth. Remember: Babies at this age usually can’t put pacifiers in their own mouths, so plan to dig around awkwardly in your rear facing car seat until you find one or bring lots of extras (I have plenty of experience with both).
Age: 4-7 months
Interests: The five senses – especially touch! She also loved practicing things at this age…over and over.
Activities: Her pacifier provided a fair bit of entertainment at this time as she was working on putting it in her own mouth. Here are some other favorites:
1. Teethers. She started teething pretty hard core around this time. Elephant; Moose (this one even doubles as a rattle); Green teether (Sadly, I think this one has been discontinued…it is a favorite)
2. More Teethers. Keys; Fun Links (We use these on everything – stroller, baby carrier, play gym, etc.); Figure 8 (We did not buy this one until she was 11 months old, but she would have enjoyed it at this age, too. It has a bit of a rattle and the figure 8 can be manipulated.)
3. Texture Book. I absolutely loved the Soft Book of Colors I found on Homegrown Happy blog, so I made my own! It was fairly easy using the instructions (although mine is not as cute). Boo loves flipping the pages, touching the different fabrics, and sucking on it!
4. Taggie Blanket. I made this as part of my don’t-spend-money-on-the-4-month-old-for-Christmas mission. I used soft minky fabric and a variety of ribbons for texture exploration. It is about 12 x 12 inches, so it is the perfect size for snuggling. Project Nursery has a nice post if you want to DIY or Etsy (I love Etsy!) has some beautiful handmade taggies for sale!
5. Chicken Stuffed Toy. My mom made this for Boo and it is the perfect size for her little hands. It is also the perfect size to fit in her cupholder, which is always entertaining for Boo. You can make your own using these instruction on Red Ted Art.
Age: 8-10 months
Interests: Eating, Still into textures, but starting to get into more intricate toys
Activities: Boo was still interested in all of her earlier toys at this point. We also started putting snacks (cheerios, goldfish, etc.) in her cup holder.
1. Elephant. We actually bought this one on a road trip while we were exploring a Target (click here for more road trip tips). It has a lot for the baby to explore and probably would have been interesting from an earlier age.
2. Rattle Ball. Again, we bought this on a roadtrip, and it probably would have been a hit for Boo starting at 4 months. This one is nice because it is lightweight, squishable, and easy for chubby little hands to maneuver.
3. Keychain. Boo, like every other baby, is obsessed with keys. This was my solution. I punched holes in some old cards from my wallet and added a keychain light and combination lock (it has some heft and spins!) from the Dollar Tree.
Keep an eye out for more favorite car toys in future posts!