Baby’s first Christmas is always the most special. Whether it is choosing a gift for your first child, for a niece, or the son of a dear friend, the desire is always to give a few memorable moments.
There is certainly no shortage of baby Christmas ideas on the market, but in this post I would like to focus in particular on the best gifts for a child who is part of a family of travelers.
If you want your gift to stand out a little you will need to think slightly outside the box. In addition to originality, you must consider the practicality of using your gift in any situation, at home or on a journey. Not buying duplicates is always better, so the portability of baby’s first Christmas gifts is also key.
This post is sponsored by Mamas and Papas, but the opinion and suggestions are my own, based on 4 years’ experience of travelling around the world with my twins.
From their Christmas gift list I picked only products we personally used (even if they were different 4 years ago). These are items we were using at home but couldn’t leave behind when travelling as they were too useful!
BABY’S FIRST CHRISTMAS: GIFT SUMMARY
THE RIGHT BOUNCER
My first recommendation in this baby’s 1st Christmas gift list could not fail to be the BabyBjörn® Bouncer Bliss bouncer.
Nowadays I believe that few parents do not use a bouncer. A perfect companion from the first months of life up to two years, loved by children, but even more so by parents who feel safe to steal 3 minutes for a shower or sandwich whilst their child is safely buckled in and giggling.
The problem is the difficulty in carrying most models when travelling. They are usually quite light, but the shape makes them difficult to handle within other luggage.
This is not the case with the BabyBjörn® Bouncer Bliss. The design was carefully developed so that the base can be removed easily and coupled with the seat can fit in the hold luggage.
Whether the child is within sight of his grandparents or is exploring a new continent, nothing will be more pleasant than swinging on a familiar seat.
The price may be high if you compare it to other bouncers, but when the child begins to sit alone, you can turn the seat and use it as a chair up to 2 years old.
In this category I have chosen 3 products. The one we used is no longer there but these are very similar. The concept is the same with minimal variations between them.
All three are products that help babies fall asleep independently. With a glowing/projecting light and a soft sound, they create an atmosphere of safety that calms the child.
We took it everywhere, in the end it is a fairly small toy that you can easily keep in your bag even when you simply go for a walk. When travelling, it is ideal to make the child feel more at home.
These products are developed on the concept that small children find white noise (or similar) and the presence of a soft glowing-light comforting. The theory is that this unconsciously replicates the feeling of safety from when they were still in the womb, and so calms the baby.
These toys are probably my favourite inexpensive baby’s first Christmas gifts.
This toy is almost identical to the one we had. It is a soft plush that produces two natural sounds while the belly glows slightly. The volume can be adjusted and after 25 minutes it switches off by itself.
This is slightly larger than Owlbie, it has the same characteristics regarding the sounds and the timer. In the case of light, instead of a simple glow, it projects an underwater light effect.
This is the most complex of the three.
The sounds and projections are not only regulated by a timer, but also features two pre-set sleep cycles developed by sleep experts.
Once the projector is turned on it goes through 3 steps to help baby fall asleep.
In addition to this more elaborate set up, it also features a baby cry sensor, which immediately activates Pabobo if the baby wakes up and cries during the night. The projection and white noise come on to calm the baby.
BEST SLEEPING BAG
When it comes to optimising what you take on the road, it would seem superfluous to think of packing a sleep bag as well, when probably the hotel (and often AIRBnB) will provide you with sheets and blankets for the crib. Big mistake, nothing causes a sleepless night more than a restless / cold baby.
We personally have used sleep bags until the twins were almost 3 years old, and we always carried them everywhere. (You can read more info about twhat to pack when travelling with a baby here) Unless your baby is already used to sleeping in a crib with sheets and blankets, adjusting for a few nights can be difficult.
Sleep bags become part of the bed routine and are another reassuring familiarity for the baby.
Soft and warm, the 2.5 Tog Dreampod Sleep Bag 6-18 months, (with a practical zip for night change without waking the baby) will keep the sleep of the whole family peaceful, wherever you are.
If like me you prefer your baby to have their own bed also while travelling, check out my post about the best travel cot and baby bed!
BEST COMFORT TOY
If you ask our twins what is the best gift they ever received, this bunny would be the answer. Or maybe not, because they maybe think they were born with them (of course they have one each).
The fact is that this little stuffed animal has been their inseparable friend from the first days of life.
A small gift, but it could turn out to be one of the most appreciated baby’s first Christmas keepsake, not only by the child but also by the parents as it is small and easy to carry when travelling, or just to have it in tow for the afternoon nap on the go!!!
The last group of gifts I have dedicated to creating the Christmas atmosphere.
Families who travel a lot are likely to spend the holiday period away from their home. Whether at a friend’s house or on a tropical island, it is difficult to recreate the family Christmas atmosphere.
…and then some carefully chosen toys. During our travels we have always been very careful to bring the bare minimum, limiting toys and games to a couple of books and some sensory games (without ever forgetting the bunnies of course!). In this case, if they are Christmas themed, they will help to remind the child that Santa will arrive soon.
These are my best pick from Mamas & Papas Xmas-shop, check out their website in case I missed something.