It’s always struck me as a little ridiculous how so many presents given to mark a special occasion in a baby’s life end up languishing in the back of a cupboard or collecting dust on top of a shelf because they’re considered ‘too good’ to use. Of course, I’m talking about all those Bunnykins-style fine china cup and bowl sets that have become a christening or first birthday staple. And don’t even get me started on silver spoons and pewter rattles.
So here’s our pick for a baby gift idea that has ‘heirloom’ stamped all over it while being something that tiny recipients can actually use. Take a look at the stunning range of Uncle Goose blocks.
These classic wooden blocks are handmade in Michigan in the US and have just arrived in Australia via Rose & Lily. The blocks are available in traditional or modern alphabet sets, a whimsical nursery rhyme set, a counting set and in intricate foreign language sets for bilingual bubbas learning Spanish, Russian, Polish, Danish, Hebrew, French, Swedish, Italian, German, Arabic or Dutch. There’s even a Braille version, sign language blocks and a set with Egyptian hieroglyphics.
I’ve fallen in love with the turn-of-the-century styling of the traditional alphabet blocks and have them pegged as a christening gift for my darling newborn nephew as well as a keepsake first-Christmas present for my own pending new arrival.
All blocks have bevelled edges so there’s no sharp corners to injure delicate gums and are embossed with child-safe inks. We especially love how you can buy single replacement blocks when one or two in your chosen set inevitably go missing.
Blocks range in price from $24 to $95 per set and have just landed in selected toy stores and baby boutiques in Melbourne and Sydney.