If you have young kids like me, then you know how hard it can be when it comes to gifts. They have so much and they don’t really have any idea what’s going on, but at the same time you feel lame if you don’t get them anything and you definitely don’t want to waste money getting things that will break immediately or be of no interest after it’s unwrapped.
I’m here to help you Mama!
Here are a few options that you can stuff in your baby’s stocking or wrap for under the tree. Ultimately, this list is practical and every item is less than $10!!! 😃
My 8 month old is putting all the things in her mouth right now, so I’m definitely in the need of these easy teething rings that I can grab and use anywhere!
I’m completely serious. What’s your kiddo’s favorite snack? If the box is too big to fit in the stocking, put it in a plastic baggie. Puffs, Cheerios, Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies, Raisins and Fruit Snacks (these are my family’s favorites!!! Even hubs and I eat them 😛 ) are some amazing options! Never underestimate the gift of food 😉
Coloring Book + Crayons
Toddlers love to create and color, so why not get them some new Crayons (or just wrap the one they already use… they won’t know 😉 ) and a coloring book from the $1 store? This makes the stocking look like it’s overflowing which is always a bonus for those pictures you’re sure to take.
This timeless classic is a great option when it comes to stocking stuffers and practical gifts under the tree. Here are some of my family’s favorites (yes, we own all of these and the non-seasonal ones are used every single day!) that I know your family would love too.
100 Paper Planes to Fold & Fly – $7.99
This book is packed with 100 brilliantly designed paper planes to make and fly, ranging from fighter planes to space rockets and creepy flying bugs. This book features 4 different models to perfect, each with their own concise instructions on how to best fold and fly them. They are printed on special tear-out pages too which makes this an easy and limited mess activity.
And don’t forget about the airplane flying contest afterwards 😉
This one is going into my 8-month-old’s stocking and I am so excited for her to open it. It’s a little box set of 4 board books full of black and white shapes and pictures. There are other adorable box sets in the series, including mini machines and a little library that has a mix of shapes + everyday items.
Baby’s Very First Stroller Book – $7.99
This has been a life-saver more than once for us. They are very simple board books with brightly colored, high-contrast illustrations, and holes and finger trails. My favorite part is the elastic attachment to attach the book to a stroller or baby gym because it will never get lost and always on hand to entertain and amuse. This is a great book to keep in your diaper bag!
Hello Baby! set – $9.99
I am not joking when I say we do not leave the house without this book! This has been my youngest’s favorite since she was a month old. First because of the bright colors and then because she could grab the cloth pages and Mama didn’t care 😛 Now that she’s teething, she loves the teething ring handle! Seriously, this is a MUST for all my baby mamas out there! This also make a phenomenal baby shower gift ❤
Merry Christmas Baby – $4.99
I got this book for my youngest and it is so sweet! It’s a delightful colorful board book with colorful Christmas scenes full of chirping robins, skating penguins, sledding mice, a tree and presents. Every page says, “Merry Christmas ___” to whatever is on that page. Simple, but so fun!
Very First Words Christmas – $4.99
I got this one for my oldest (2 years old) so she can learn our Christmas lingo 😉 This board book is full of pages that hold delightful festive scenes like decorating the tree, getting ready for Santa, Santa on the roof and opening presents.
That’s Not My series – $9.99
This board book series is no stranger to my blog. I love the touchy-feely pages and once you get your hands on one, you’ll want them all 😛 I especially love the winter / Christmas themed ones like That’s Not My Snowman, That’s Not My Reindeer, That’s Not My Angel, That’s Not My Elf, That’s Not My Penguin and That’s Not My Polar Bear.
There are plenty of other options – especially when it comes to kids in grade school! If you want to couple a gift you already have with a book, let me know and I’ll find one for you.
Things They Need
Like I said above, they’re young and completely not phased by what culture says commercial Christmas should look like. So why not wrap things they need anyway? Socks are great for this. Most baby and toddler PJ’s are under $10 at WalMart and clearance racks. Maybe a new toothbrush or hair ties/bows if you have a girl.
Something of Yours
Heirlooms isn’t quite the word I’m looking for, but I think you get the idea. If you can, give your child something that used to be yours or that belonged to someone else in the family. This makes the gift extra special because you can share a story (or share a few stories) that are attached to that gift. An example would be a baby doll bed. You can restore that item with a fresh coat of paint and maybe get a (or make) a new blanket to cover it. Not only are you gifting your child something material that is incredibly special, but you’re also giving the gift of stories and family memories.
This is a big one in our family! We love doing things with our kids and believe this is more valuable than a material thing. Make a coupon to go on a date with just you and your toddler doing their favorite things. You can go somewhere free like the park and get ice cream after or spend some money and go to the zoo, science center or aquarium. The idea is that one child gets your undivided, uninterrupted attention. This is so special not just to them, but for you as well. Because ultimately, your kids don’t need lots of presents, they need lots of memories! They don’t need lots of wrapping paper to tear off, they need lots of laughs! They don’t need your money, they need your time!
I hope this post helped you to relax about the gifts and encouraged you to take joy in experiencing this season with your kids. I’m not saying gifts are bad, but don’t give your children things just to give it to them. Be international and fully enjoy the season 😀