Now that I have kids, I have grown a real love for knitted toys. It is quick, a great stash buster, and makes a kid (or kid at heart smile). I have made a few toys for my kids, and I plan on many more. I have included pictures and links to a few of my favorite. If you type in "toys" on Ravelry when you are searching for patterns, the choices are endless.
I absolutely LOVE Danger Crafts' monsters by Rebecca Danger. This is Daphne and Delilah. She has a few free patterns, many single patterns for purchase, and a new book. http://www.ravelry.com/designers/rebecca-danger
I also LOVE anything by Susan B. Andersen, who wrote the "Itty Bitty Toys" "Itty Bitty Hats" "Itty Bitty Nursery" and most recently "Spud and Chloe's at the Farm." http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/sources/spud--chloe-at-the-farm
Here are some more cute toys from her that are on my list.
There is a tennis ball in this frog. Ingenious!
What kid wouldn't love these puppies.
The toys that I will be starting next are from a small independent publisher in Colorado. It is a husband and wife team. He does the illustrations, and she writes the stories...and the patterns. Yes, there are patterns for the toys and clothes in the stories. This is such a fabulous concept because it connects my knitting to my children. These books are available through Etsy and they will ship internationally. http://www.etsy.com/shop/slatefallsknits?ref=seller_info
There are just so many toys to knit. If you have some stash to bust, and need some practice with double pointed needles, check them out. I even learned how to use the Magic Loop method from Danger Crafts.