To help you choose the perfect gift for everyone on your list—from the littles to the bigs—here is a comprehensive guide to this year’s have to haves…all from local businesses, to boot! To find out more about each business, please refer to the ads in this issue.
Freya Sophia Waldorf Store (Duncan)
Baby/Preschool: The Gerda Muller Seasons Gift Boardbooks. This charming gift box collection are beautifully illustrated with no words, full of seasonal details. A best selling favourite for the young featuring four books—spring, summer, autumn and winter. Illustrator, Gerda Muller. $42.
Children: Hoppa Waldorf Doll. This lovely collection of Waldorf dolls are handmade, fair trade, loving crafted from organic cotton. Many to choose from, boys and girls. Other soft dolls and toys for younger children also available. $60 for medium dolls, $95 for large.
Juvenile/Teen: D’aulaires Book Of Norse Myths. The Norse myths are some of the greatest stories of all time! A classic award winning, beautifully illustrated collection filled with adventure, struggle and charm that is suitable for all ages but particularly those approaching their teens. Ingri and Edgar Parin D’aulaire. $33.95.
Adult: Engel Wool Fleece Jackets. Yes, wool fleece. Not polyester. The most beautiful coats ever. So comfortable, warm, stylish, and durable—the wool is thick but lightweight, extremely warm and windproof. Comes in several colours, men’s and women’s. (Women’s $200, Children’s $148, Men’s $225).
Baby/Preschool: Squishmallows are the softest, cutest, cuddliest plush around. This line of loveable buddies is made from super-soft marshmallow-like texture and is washable. $8.99-$24.99.
Children: Honeycombs. Match bumble bee-themed symbols on hexagonal tiles and start to build your honeycomb. Work together to build one huge hive, or go head to head and crown the Queen Bee. $29.99.
Juvenile/Teen: Pixel Art. Create and proudly display eye-catching sequin images over and over again. The best new creative pixel art platform since Lite Brite. Insert pegs and hang sequins to create your own masterpiece. $55.
Adult: Authentic, licensed NASA equipment available for a limited time during “Apollo 11s” run at IMAX Victoria. Hoodies, Tees, mugs, keychains, bags, iPad cover and more. $5.99 and up.
Kool & Child (Nanaimo)
Preschool: Playmobil 1-2-3 Advent Calendar. Open a window every day from December 1-24 so your child can make a Christmas scene to play with. $32.99.
Children: Joki. This cozy hanging tent/chair is a great place to find solitude and de-stress in your own quiet world. $189.99.
Juvenile/Teen: Harry Potter Perplexus. With 70 obstacles to manoeuvre your little metal ball through helps with concentration, hand eye co-ordination and patience. $54.99.
Adult: Ravensburger “Escape” Puzzle. You need to solve all the mysteries and find the “last” puzzle piece to escape. $24.99.
Adult: Gift Cards. Find the best stuff for your body and mind. With a vast selection of supplements, organic grocery and produce, full line of coconut products, non-dairy and meat alternatives, healthy meat and dairy, natural skin and body care and gluten-free products we have something for everyone on your list. We have so much to offer, you’d be crazy not to come check us out. Voted “Best Health Food Store” and “Best Nutrition Store in Victoria” for several years in a row.
Baby/Preschool: Baby Book or Picture Book Box. A selection of recently published books for ages 0-3 or 4-7, sent each month to your favourite little one. Add a personalized note. Curated by a local children’s book expert. From $27.95.
Children: Early Reader Book Box. A selection of recently published books for children learning to read, delivered right to their door. Add a personalized note. Curated by a local children’s book expert. From $27.95.
Juvenile/Teen: Middle Grade Novel Box. A selection of recently published books for confident readers aged 8-12, delivered right to their door. Add a personalized note. Curated by a local children’s book expert. From $27.95.
Baby: Padraig Cottage Baby Slippers are handmade in BC with pure wool. Dyed and crocheted by hand. Extra soft sheepskin lining and tough leather soles for long lasting comfort. The Baby Slipper has the elasticity to stay put without being overly constrictive on young growing feet. Newborn to toddler sizes. $34.99+.
Baby: Skip Hop Explore & More 3-Stage Activity Centre. Easy to assemble, with toys that can be positioned anywhere for baby, it features a 360-degree rotating seat that turns & stretches for bouncing. Discovery Window lets baby see their feet while they play. As baby grows, activity centre converts for easy cruising—ultimately becoming a clean, sturdy table for colouring, playing and more. $169.99.
Toddler: Farm Hoppers Bouncy Toy. Will keep your little one amused for hours—and wear them out for bedtime! These inflatable bouncy animals are whimsically fun, & brightly coloured with soft, easy-to-grip ears or horns for children to hold while they bounce around. Made from a high quality, BPA-free plastic, and can help with core muscle development as well as coordination skills while having fun. Pump included! $35.99.
Child: The Hape Toys Gourmet Kitchen. An all-in-one wooden kitchen that inspires mini chefs to cook everywhere and everything. Encouraging collaborative & creative play, the Gourmet Kitchen can be combined with the Hape Gourmet Fridge, food & other cooking accessories for the complete ‘mini chef’ experience! $159.99.
The Mothering Touch Centre
Baby: Oli & Carol Fruit and Veggie Teethers. We are really excited by this new line of natural rubber toys. Beautifully designed and look good enough to eat. Use them as teethers, sensory toys or even float them in the bath, there are no holes for water to get into to grow mold. The fruits and veggies are soft and easy for babies to grasp, safe to chew and soothing for sore gums. 4 M +. $24.99.
Baby: Fat Brain Toys—Whirly Squigz. Created to spark curiosity and creativity. One of the most popular toys is the Whirly Squigz. Stick’em, spin’em, whirl’em! Whirly Squigz are big, bright, and full of tactile fun. The suction cups stick to any smooth surface, making them perfect for home, travel, and bath time. Little ones will love taking this toy out for a spin over and over again. 10 M +. $29.99.
Baby: Cate & Levi Hand Puppets. Handmade in Toronto from premium reclaimed wool. The hand puppets are carefully crafted to bring you a soft and lovable toy or a gift that is responsibly made and environmentally friendly. No two puppets are identical, as each has a unique color combination. 0+. $24.99.
Preschool: Hape Stacking Music Set. Make wonderful music and explore melody and rhythm with this innovative set. Children can stack the differently sized blocks in any way they see fit, exploring music and shapes as they play. 18 M +. $49.99.
Baby/Preschool: KicKee Pants Bamboo Sleepers. Celebrate winter in these bamboo sleepers and matching layette. Limited edition prints, featuring their latest Winter Celebrations. The Perfect Christmas pj’s. $38.99.
Children: Ambler Wool Hats. Keep your child’s head warm and cozy all winter in these hand knit hats made in Peru. This B.C. brand uses designs inspirted by our outdoor wilderness and cutest animals. $31.99 & up.
Juvenile/Teen: Djeco Puzzles. Beautifully illustrated, quality made cardboard puzzles. Sizes suitable for first puzzle makers to adult. $19.99 & up.
Adult: Little Blue House Christmas Ornaments Socks. Why give them just plain ol’ socks when you can give these fun Holiday Ornaments socks for adults tucked in a cool tree ornament. $10.99.
Victoria Bug Zoo
Baby/Preschool: Finger and hand puppets. From one-finger ladybug puppets to whole-hand hermit crabs, our arthropod puppets will make you wish you had more fingers. $4-35.
Children: Bug Collecting Kits. Inspire a future field biologist. Various collection kits include nets and other collecting devices, binoculars, magnifying glasses and viewing containers. $5-10.
Juvenile/Teen: Starter microscope sets. For the budding young scientist, a first glimpse through a microscope can reveal a world of wonder. $15.99.
Adult: Attracting Beneficial Bugs to your Garden by Jessica Walliser. This refreshing book delves into the fascinating relationships between insects and plants and will help you make your own insect-friendly garden. $31.95. 240pgs.•