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The kids at this age love to do what you do. Get a broom - vacuum - kitchen stuff. They love it.


Give her very little. Not to sound like a scrooge or anything but I am sure she has lots already, family and friends will buy her things and most importantly, for the first few years of my kids' lives they took more interest in the boxes and wrapping paper than they did the gifts!


Ok.. I was rofl on the quacking like psychotic duck comment... I have been known to do that a time or two. I bought my 17 month old a bunch of cool stuff..Little Tikes makes this little toy trike that we can make stationary so she can rock on it, or she can ride like a trike or it has a push bar in back so we can push her. Also, Walmart sells this little red car with push bar at back that she loves to sit it while we push her on walks. Best bang for the buck for that toy.. its pretty much replaced a stroller and I take her all over the mall in it. It might also be Little Tikes. Also got her baby doll with baby stroller, Little Touch Leap Frog Learning System as she loves to look at books.


Love the reference to The Office:)


Oh yeah.. forgot to add on last post.. 1) I agree.. WTF with the lady who missed the bow on MP.. was she elderly?

2) In addition to the trike I also got my 17 mos old the Little People Noah's Ark. The Little People toys are really great.. and a $10 dump truck with Mega blocks from Tarjay.. yup. a dump truck...my little girl loves it.

My daughter is 23 months. Her big gifts will be the Little People farm and a tent thingy, but when you ask her what she thinks Santa might leave under the tree, her eyes light up and she says "socks". Sometimes "blue socks", sometimes red. Too funny. I also bought a bunch of cheap fun crap at the dollar store so she'll have lots to unwrap. I think at her age the whole experience of seeing the presents and ripping off the paper will be fun. The gifts themselves are kind of secondary. (Although I have bought 10 pairs of socks..don't want to disappoint!)


My daughter is 18 months, and for Christmas from us she'll be getting a little plastic wading pool, a lawnmower (she's beyond obsessed with gardening implements), lower case letter fridge magnets, a wooden puzzle and her first colouring-in book. I've tried to go easy on music-making plastic toys as they take up so much room and tend to drive me crazy. She'll also get her yearly tree ornament. We're giving her baby friends Snack Traps- they've only just become available here in Australia and everyone thinks ours is genius.


Well, I am going to start off with the assvice, since of course, I have not adopted yet, and have never been a mother in my whole entire life, and all... but just a suggestion from my pre-adoption classes. They said that when a child prefers one parent, NOT to hand them to the nonprefered parent to make it "fair"... it is kind of like if you liked your mom more than your aunt, and went to your mom for comfort, and she pushed you away and shoved you into your aunt's arms... ie bewildering and yucky. They said for the parent who is "prefered" by the child to keep the child, but ENCIRCLE the other parent too, so that they are all in a loving huddle, and say things like "I love you, and I love daddy, and daddy loves you"... to make the child feel she is not rejected by her chosen parental figure, but also that the chosen parental figure loves and trusts the lesserprefered parent... kind of like a recommendation of trust, and a bringing together and including of all three of the family. So, when Maya wants to come to you, you could try that. Take Maya, and hug in Random, all together, and say out loud how much you love Random. Apparently that helps some of the "here, take her, she doesn't like me, she wants you" resentment and feeling left out which can just be perpetuating by distancing the lesserprefered parent. Anyways, total assvice I know... but it did seem like something personally I had never thought of.

As for prezzies... I don't even have a kid, and so far have bought that Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Home (good for ages 6 mos to 4 yrs etc), which I tested on the 14 mo old neighbor kid and she loved it. And a doll. For my exes kids I was a massmarket suck and bought Legos for older kids (some super transformer robots) and Bratz, those super slutty dolls... the toddler slut triplets. hah!


Me again... the 14 mo next door kid has this Leapfrog Farm Fridge magnet set http://tinyurl.com/yfscyv and totally LOVES it... she can put the pieces in herself and just dances about to it. Keeps her busy in the kitchen when mom is cooking. It is next on my list for my upcoming babe. I also got nextdoor kid the Little People Playground set http://www.amazon.com/Little-People-Fun-Sounds-Playground/dp/B0000D12XT which also plays music (I think the music is her fave part of the FP laugh and learn home too, at this age), and she has the Little People ark and schoolbus, both of which she seems to really enjoy. Her other fave toy right now is a sort of shoppingcart-like pushtoy/walker that she negotiates around the apartment. She loves running around pushing it, and carries dolls, blocks etc in it.


We got my daughter this when she was about Maya's age and she LOVED it:



I'll start with the assvice, which is TOTALLY assvice, because my daughter isn't adopted. However, we just had some seperation anxiety and I was TORN as to whether to take her when she whinged for me, or make her stay with Dad.

I chose take her when she whinged, to teach her that I was always going to be there, etc, etc. We also did a version of what cluttergirl mentioned - sitting with daddy and having stories, me giving him ig hugs and talking about how nice he is, etc. It lasted a few weeks, and now Dad is back in favour and I'm able to leave the room. So I don't necessarily think that if you let her ask to be held by you it will end in random being evicted, but who knows?

Re: presents, my kid is 18 months - wooden puzzles, magnets and stacking blocks are her favourite things at the moment. She's getting an IKEA table and chairs, a mesh bag for bath toys, and a book from us. I don't think you're being stingy at all.


At 16+ months, Maya might like the Fisher-Price Little People farm. Also, if she doesn't already have a nice set of small wooden blocks (the kind manufactured in Germany, for ex.), they are great for developing small motor coordination. Just watch out...I got beaned plenty w/my daughter's blocks when she first started playing w/them. Other than that, just give her a set of fancy grocery story paper bags with handles; kids are all about sorting and carrying things around at this age. Have fun!


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I had a woman who was bagging at the grocery store the other day ask if, after over hearing me talking to my daughter by her name, Caroline, ask, and I quote "Is Caroline a girl?" She had on a pink jacket and pants. I still shake my head at this one just thinking about it.

Christmas stuff- C will be 22 months at Christmas and I'm getting her stacking/nesting blocks with alphabet and pictures on them, a wooden pull toy and a fisher price carosel toy. I think thats it aside from stocking stuffers. I'm trying really hard to stay away from batteries this year.

Last Christmas, she had more fun with the wrapping, boxes and bows and it took her all morning to open her presents.


I wouldn't have thought viagra for an under-two girl, but I have no kids, so sure, go with that.


If you took some wooden spoons, and some toys she already loves, and wrap them in paper, it will be as much fun for her as if you spend money on a bunch of presents for her. She is too young to get it on any level. And your family will shower her with gifts, I'm sure. I know with my first, I bought him gifts for Christmas because I felt I had to, but it is a total waste. Spend the money on really cute Christmas clothes. Much more important.

Sarah's LaoLao

1. Toy Telephone so she can 'call' those important to her (this play fantasy can create a phone monster by her 2nd b'day--but since I'M the grandma--who cares if I call halfway across the country to speak with my Sarah and so WHAT if I want to give her a cell phone of her own at 26 months of age).
2. Toy shopping cart (so Maya can give J rides)
2-A. Like previous poster--a Clean Bum?!?!
She has no culturally dictated expectations of this day, no 2 year old does--just another day in this long strange new journey--the lights and ornaments will probably be special enough to her
3. Oh yeah-Soft giant Stuffed Animal that she can fall headfirst onto (just sharing Sarah's experience when the new grandma-moi-gave her new grand a giant teddy bear--she plopped down on its tummy and was practically bounced back to upright it was hilarious).
Anything more than this can get confusing --enough gifts and celebration to let her know it's a special day but you don't want to overwhelm. . . and besides--everyone else will take up the slack- just make certain you have prepared a list to draw upon when someone asks what Maya would like for the Holidays.
Sarah-Beara's LaoLao


I was gonna be pissed at the viagra ad until I saw Melina's comment, which would have made me spit coffee at the screen were I drinking at the time.

Woman in store=asshat. Seriously. What a total moron.

Everyone thought Ellie was a boy for like ever. Doesn't happen so much any more, but holy crap it happened all the time when she was a baby. Constantly. I never could figure out why people would prefer to assume one gender, possibly being wrong, rather than *ask* if they couldn't tell for sure. Really. Is it that hard to say "is your baby a boy or girl?" or something else tht might solicit such information? Even just asking "how old is your baby?" will result in an answer including a gender-specifying pronoun: "she is 16 months."

Christmas. Go easy. You will fall in love with something and it will be your favorite gift for her and she will adore something else and you will be disappointed. And you will have to live with all the crap you buy, too! And friends and relatives will get her stuff, too (all our big stuff comes from devoted family). At that age, you could wrap stuff you already own and it would be fine. Actually, that's not a bad idea...hmm...... oh! Sorry... um.. anyway, set the precedent of less stuff, or your life will be HELL when she is older and the phrase "we need to buy that" has entered her vocbulary. take it from me. I know.


Have to comment on your post today. Screaming AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH sounds everyday all the time are the norm in our home now. We hesitate to go out to eat unless we go somewhere so loud, no one will notice! Naptime. What naptime? The only thing I have found that will work is rocking her in a rocking chair. She's out in less than 5 minutes. I may regret this at age 15 when she is still trying to crawl in my lap, but for now it works! She naps, I get a few moments with her while she is quiet and still and sweet!

Christmas gifts: toy cell phone (so she will leave mine alone), toy laptop computer (so she will leave mine alone), some small Parents brand cars (so she will leave mine alone! hehe!), some plastic fruit and vegeatables from the $1 store for sorting into her various bags and boxes!

I told the grandparents that anything they bought that is bigger than Ty is, has to stay at their house!


I also saw that episode of The Office (love it), and kept thinking, 'but how do you KNOW it's your son's favorite color if he's that young?' Never a good sign when you're overthinking a sitcom.

Have been enjoying reading of the trials, tribulations and joy of your coming home with Maya. Thanks for keepin it real.


My kiddo is a bit older (2 in January), but she's getting:

Beanbag set
Rody (rubber bouncing horse)
Finger puppets
Set of stamps with washable ink
Play sushi set
Perhaps a felt board and pieces

Thanks for continuing to share you life with MP with us.

Lots of visiting playgroup kids love our son's rocking horse (which also has wheels so it can be pushed around), its called the Sprite convertable rocking horse (made by Mamas & Papas).


It's been a while since G was Maya's age, but I remember getting her books, wooden puzzles, videos, and Sesame Street plush toys for her first couple of Christmases. Her birthday is in January, so she was almost 1 and almost 2 at the time. This year she's almost 8 and has asked for her own video iPod. 0_0


My son is 15 months, and Santa is bringing him a wooden block train, a work bench with plastic tools, some kind of car track thingy, several books, and a very large roller coaster kind of thing that goes in the back yard (daddy picked that out). Also a tricycle, which was supposed to be the big gift, until daddy went a little overboard and got the roller coaster.

His grandparents are also giving him a little push car to ride around in outside, along with a few other little things, including an awesome pair of little Merrell shoes.

On that nap thing - have you tried using the same routine you use at bedtime? That seems to help around here. I do the routine and then plunk him in the crib with some safe toys, and he falls asleep on his own. It wasn't always this easy, though, so I totally feel your pain. Naptime was a battle for the longest time, but you just can't take no for answer. Do the same routine every day, put her in the crib, walk out and shut the door, and eventually she'll figure out that naps are not optional. If she cries when you leave, give her a couple of minutes and if she doesn't seem to be slowing down, go back in and putter around the room a little bit while she stays in the crib. Hand her a new toy, and sneak out while she's busy with it.


We do three (Santa) gifts per kidlet. For me, it is symbolic of the three gifts presented to Jesus by the Wise Guys...for That Guy I Married, it is symbolic of saving loads of cash:)

Another thing we have tried in the past is something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read.

Just food for thought...

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