Picking toys is not easy and there is a toy website called ebeanstalk, dedicated to selecting good, safe educational toys and learning baby gifts. BUT they need help from moms like me to help pick the toys. The toy they sent is called Activity Bus from Plan Toys, who makes eco-friendly wooden toys.
I love the concept of wooden toys made from sustainable forestry resources to which Plan Toys is committed. About half of our toys are wood and I buy non-plastic toys for birthday gifts for the kids school friends too when ever possible. I would like to encourage others to do the same.
Ella is using the bus as a dozer below. Not the intended use but a great way to have fun with this toy regardless of what we adults think.
This lovely pair of mini-dolls are the teacher and student which accompanied the bus. Their legs are attached by elastic bands so you can make them stand or sit by pulling on their feet.
These poor little people are mostly cast aside so that Ella can use the interior of the bus for block transport. You see how the bus opens up and the entire seating area can be used for it's cargo capacity.
Filling the interior with blocks seems to be great entertainment for Ella and it hones her stacking and organizing skills.
There are no yucky chemicals on these toys and by supporting this manufacturer your choice is for sustainability, not more plastic to end up in landfills. (Wood will biodegrade a bezillion times faster than plastic!)
So I would encourage you to take a side trip over to Plan Toys today and look at what they have available for your kids. I know I always like the feel of the wooden toys better than the plastic. Maybe buy something with a natural feel for the next present you intend to purchase for your kid? I don't think you will regret it!