Sprout benefits from all the attention of his siblings. He's mellow, rolls with the punches, erm - more often shoves and crushing bear hugs, and is my earliest talker. He benefits from my relaxed attitude towards a whole host of things.
But come a giftgiving holiday and I am at a loss. Picking gifts for everyone else is easy. They love books, need clothing, have set ideas about toys they'd love. He gets all their hand me downs in every category and really at 14 months he doesn't express a need for anything except attention and bubbas and food. I was packing things to bring to Wakefield and saw the kids each had books and outfit and something from Santa will be coming of course. Then I looked at poor Sprout. His books are really the ones I'll read to the whole family because I felt I had to wrap something for him. His clothes are individually wrapped socks and second hand overalls. There wasn't a toy to be found and what on earth would Santa bring????
I'm REALLY picky about toys too.
Well I did research on PLAN toys and I am just in love with this company and their environmental and social practices (their toys are made from rubberwood trees slated for tearing out and burning. They take them on and keep them growing long enough for them to qualify as ORGANIC - 3 years no spraying etc, and offer their workers all sorts of amazing social programs). So Sprout is getting a little bag of sensory blocks that PLAN designed for autistic children. Part of the amount I spent on them goes to Austism Research. I couldn't feel better about a toy. AND they are super cool too. I can't wait to play with them myself!
His Daddy-Oma is sending Chapter's giftcard money and I'll pick him another PLAN toy from their selection too. Nature Girl is hoping I'll get him (ahem) their slicing fruit and veggie set. He does like playing kitchen with us and is obsessed with knives. Theu're out of stock right now so that'll have to wait.
But really, check out PLAN toys...I'm usually suspicious of mass produced wooden toys but this company rocks...and they're inovative enought to come out with natural toys suitable for a 5th child!