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Birthday presents

My baby girl turned three years old a couple of weeks ago. While she ripped the wrapping off a multitude of presents, I sat watching in a dewy-eyed haze of “I can’t believe my tiny newborn is so big” disbelief.

I’m always really aware that kids’ birthdays can become a bit hectic with presents, like at Christmas. So while I wanted her to have stuff to open, I also wanted her to really enjoy each gift, rather than scrambling from one present to the next, to the next, in a frenzy of crazed unwrapping.

This year we plumped with some wooden toys rather than the bike we had originally planned. At the time of gift-choosing, we didn’t yet know where we’d be living this summer, so we had to pick something that Frog could play with at home.

Included in her gifts were a couple of very clever ones from Letterbox – a High Tea Shape Sorter and Wooden Bake and Decorate Cupcakes.

They were both instant winners, being played with as soon as the wrapping was off – before the birthday girl had even got dressed out of her pyjamas.

High Tea Shape SorterThe High Tea Shape Sorter has already given Frog hours of fun and is one of those toys that provides lots of opportunity for interactive play. As well as sorting the shapes, there’s a chance for role play (I wasn’t allowed to be chef, naturally), and number games.

Number gamesOnce that game was done and dusted, Frog tried her hand at the Wooden Bake and Decorate Cupcakes.

A brilliant toy with lots of role play potential,  my three year old loved “icing” the cakes with the pens (shaped as icing tubes), chatting about the colours she was choosing. Once she’d iced them, she put a candle on top of each one and pretended to blow it out. Then she put them in her imaginary oven. I held back from remarking that the candles shouldn’t really go in the oven…

Wooden Decorate and Bake CupcakesBoth toys offer lots of opportunity for various different games – and the quality and attention to detail is second to none.

But you know the thing I really loved? They LOOK pretty. They’re nothing near some of the plastic tat that my three year old hoards, discarding around the house as quickly as I can hastily stuff it into drawers and boxes.

A big thank you to Hawkins Bazaar and Letterbox for these gifts. And also for making sure Frog got her own party bag, despite not having a big birthday party this year. If you’re looking for classy party bags with gifts that kids (and parents) will actually thank you for – the ones on offer at Hawkin’s Bazaar are definitely worth considering.

The High Tea Shape Sorter is available from Letterbox for £26.00 and the Wooden Bake and Decorate Cupcake Set is available from Letterbox for £15.00. Both are, in my opinion, brilliant value for money.

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Disclosure: We were provided with a Wooden Bake and Decorate Cupcake set and a High Tea Shape Sorter from Letterbox, along with a Premium Party Bag and Wooden Flexi Animals from Hawkin’s Bazaar for the purpose of this review. All opinions remain my own.