Confession: as a new mom, and frequent Pinterest-er, I might be slightly obsessed with Melissa & Doug toys. My kid can't even crawl yet but between a local consignment shop, online yardsale site, HomeGoods, Amazon, and even Barnes and Noble I've stockpiled these so far:
1) Jumbo knob puzzles. I picked up a set of three complete with its own shelf at a local consignment shop.
2) Stack and Sort Board. This was one of his Christmas presents this year. He can pick up blocks pretty well and this is going to be great when he can start stacking items on the pegs and much later when he can sort the colors & count items.
3) Shape Sorting Clock. Again, this is something he can enjoy now and still entertain him later when he can sort colors/numbers and learn how to tell time. These can be found in Amazon and Barnes and Noble stores (10% off with the yearly membership).
4) License Plate Game. I loved doing this when I was younger and this is also a sneaky way for him to learn the name and location of all 50 states!
I also plan on picking this up closer to his 1 yr birthday: http://www.melissaanddoug.com/latches-board-learning-game
Related items (aka cheaper version of the Melissa & Doug toys ;) ):
1) Playskool Busy Gears http://www.amazon.com/Hasbro-Playskool-Busy-Gears/dp/B000BCEJ86. Their version: http://www.melissaanddoug.com/switch-spin-magnetic-gears-toy
2) Eric Carle lacing toys. http://www.amazon.com/Eric-Carle-Animal-Lacing-Cards/dp/0811860019/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1355756541&sr=8-1&keywords=eric+carle+lacing+cards Several Eric Carle books are part of our nighttime reading routine (esp Very Hungry Caterpillar) so I had to get these. Their version: http://www.melissaanddoug.com/lace-and-trace-art-and-crafts
2) MULA Bead Roller Coaster from IKEA. http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/80014041/ Their version: http://www.melissaanddoug.com/classic-toy-bead-maze
They also have all sorts of puzzles with sounds and pattern blocks and boards that I plan on purchasing in the future.