Unique Gifts for Kids
It's the most wonderful time of the year! Right? For the most part I say yes. It's a time to be with family creating holiday traditions. It's also a stressful time trying to figure out what to get my kids for Christmas. I already feel like we have an abundance of toys filling our tiny little apartment so I was trying to think of gifts I could give my kids that would hold their interest longer than a day and also not create a ton of new "stuff" to store.
Don't get me wrong, I think toys are great for kids. When kids play with toys they are learning about the world around them, how to problem solve, communicate and a ton of other things. I do however think that kids don't need a room full of toys in order to learn or have fun. I'm sure there are many other parents out there that feel the toy situation in their home has become overwhelming so I'm here to help! Here is a list of non-toy gifts that you or your loved ones can get for your kids this year.
1. Museum & Zoo Memberships. This is one of the easiest gifts that you could give and its a gift that gives all year long. If you have a museum near you that your kids love, then a year long membership would be great. We are members of a little hands on museum near us that is great for both kids. We go multiple times a year so after only a few visits the membership totally pays off.
One thing to look for is if the museum of your choice participates in reciprocal programs. Our museum is a part of the AZA as well as the ASTC which means that we get half off admission to all other AZA zoos and aquariums and free admission at all other ASTC museums that are at least 90 miles away from our home. For us this is a win-win because I know that at least once a year we will be able to use our membership for free admission at museums and zoos in Ohio since all our family is there.
2. A Magazine Subscription: Magazines are a great gift for kids. It's like a mini gift every month! I have fond memories of getting my American Girl magazine every month when I was younger. Now there are so many great magazines geared towards all different interests. Here are a few that you can check out.
There are so many more too, just do a quick google search and I'm sure you will find one that your child will love.
3. Subscription Boxes: Recently subscription boxes have become oh so popular. There are so many unique ones geared towards kids too. Although some of the ones I list below may include a toy or two, I love that it is something new each month and it's a gift that they can use all year long. Here are some of the ones I would love to try with my kids.
- KiwiCo- They have a box for every age group that includes amazing STEAM activities. Click on the link above to check out all the options. (Now thru December 11 Kiwi Co is offering 60% off your first months subscription! Click the picture above to take advantage of this offer before it's gone.)
- My Pretend Place- This is a great way to build a collection of dress up clothes for your little one.
- Little Passports- They have age specific boxes for kids that include activities about geography and science.
- Green Kid Crafts- This box brings you a craft project every month and teaches you about nature.
4. Classes: Has your child been wanting to learn to swim or do karate? Holidays are birthdays are a great time to give the gift of a class. Check out your local Parks & Recreation department to see what kinds of classes they offer for your child. It's great to already be registered for the class before you gift it that way you know that it will happen.
Another option for classes is to check out your area craft stores. Michael's offers Saturday Kids Club Crafts almost every week and most of them only cost about $2 per child. You can register online or in store. (This would also make a great option for the next idea on my list)
5. Parent/Child Dates: One of the best and easiest gifts you can give to your child is your time. Even as a stay at home mom I feel like I don't get enough one on one time with my children. A great gift is to plan a year's worth of "dates" for you and your child.
To make this gift for your child I came up with a great idea that will make it so much easier to plan throughout the year. All you need is a jar, Popsicle sticks and my printable labels. You can either come up with the date ideas before or after you give it to your child. I prefer to have some made before and then let them help decide the rest. Write each date idea on a Popsicle stick and put it in the jar. Attach the label to the outside and you are all set. Each month your child can pick an activity from the jar and then decide which parent they want to go on a date with. Or if you have multiple children like we do make two jars (one for mom and one for dad) then have each child pull from whoever's jar they want to go on a date with. You can have the same activities in both jars or have unique activities that dad or mom would prefer to do.
Get the free printable label below. I've included three different versions to suite your family's needs.
6. KiddoKeepsakes: KiddoKeepsakes is a company that creates beautiful greeting cards that you and your child finish together to send to someone you love. It's both an activity and a keepsake in one. You can purchase a set that will last all year!
I love this gift idea because you and your child work together to create something for someone else. What a great way to show your child how to be caring and thoughtful. It's especially great for families like ours who live far away from relatives. Now we can send them unique greeting cards for every occasion and it's pretty enough to frame. Check out all they have to offer at their website here.
7. Art or Hobby Supplies: If your kids are anything like mine then art supplies would always be a welcome gift. This could also apply to any hobbies your child has. Maybe they love to make friendship bracelets or collect bugs. Why not get them a kit full of bracelet making supplies or magnifying glasses and collection containers? It's a great way encourage them to continue to do what they love.
8. Tickets: Is Daniel Tiger Live coming to town? Or has your child been begging you to take them to an amusement park? This is a great time of year to purchase them a ticket to a special event, concert or amusement park. It also will give them something to look forward to later in the year if it's not happening right around the gift giving season.
9. Travel Equipment: Are you taking a trip soon or traveling for the holidays? Invest in a new suitcase or travel bag for your little one. My oldest constantly asks when she will get her own suitcase. I love the practicality of this gift but also that you can get them something that makes them feel a bit more grown up.
10. Books or Audio Books: You can never have too many books right? We have a ton and are still always checking books out from the library. I love giving my kids the gift of new books because it not only encourages them to read, but also gives us something we can share together. We recently started listening to audio books in the car or during our quiet time and my oldest loves it. Here are some great ones from Amazon.
This list is making me want to spend way too much money on my kids this Christmas! I hope this list was helpful to you and your family. What other non-toy or unique gift ideas do you have? Leave a comment below and let me know. I would love to add it to my list!