Do your kids have too many toys? Does the idea of more “stuff” stress you?
Consider some of these suggestions for great gifts that aren’t toys. We love giving our kids gifts like these!
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Headlamp and Flashlight
My kids use headlamps like this Foxelli Headlamp to read in bed, do chores when it’s a bit dark, or make their way around a campsite. This one comes in six colors; get a different color for each child! Flashlights are always hit for nearly all ages, big kids and little kids. I love these two flashlights for little ones who are afraid of the dark, Giddy Buggy Flashlight and Spin and Learn flashlight.
Metal Detector – for kids who love to explore
I’ve thought about buying a metal detector for years and really wish we’d had one the Christmas Claire lost her brand new iPod in the yard. We never did find it. This would be great fun at the beach or just about anywhere. I wonder if my boys would find any treasures in our pasture?
Magazine Subscription – Kids love getting mail all year long.
We’ve given our kids magazine subscriptions for years. My older kids loved Muse and American Girl when they were growing up. Wogayu loves Sports Illustrated for Kids. You can’t go wrong with a gift that arrives each month. Want to go clutter-free? Get the Kindle version. Some favorites are: Sports Illustrated for Kids, National Geographic Kids, Ladybug, Muse, Ranger Rick, and Zoobooks.
We love real tools for our kids, from typical hammers and screwdrivers to cleaning tools. This Active Kyds 9-piece Tool Set is nice, and the tool belt makes it extra fun. When my kids were young, they loved using the Dustbuster! And how cute is that little stand with the mop and broom?
Crafts and Art Supplies
Crafts and art supplies can be used over a long period of time, which I love. My kids have learned new skills from gifts like these, Knitting Loom, Knitting set. If you’re having a hard time thinking of crafts for boys, check out these sets for making catapults and bouncy balls.We’ve a sewing machine for Christmas. I also like this sewing kit and the weaving loom. Prismacolor pencils and sketchbook, and many gifts just like these. And I had to add the fairy garden kit because it’s just cute.
I could put so many things in this category, but in terms of overall usefulness and longevity, these are my favorites. A birdfeeder can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Our kids had real, child-size gardening tools too. We still use them! We also have big-kid binoculars and little-kid binoculars that come in handy and are fun to take on hikes and vacations.
True confession, I could write an entire list just of educational favorites. These are some of the gifts we’ve loved over the years. As I wrote this I realized I need to get an updated globe like this one. A lot has changed since we bought our first one! The Global Puzzle was a big hit on our family vacation. I plan to get it out again over the holidays. We have three US Puzzles, this wooden one is nice. Several of my kids enjoyed learning sign language.
LeapFrog toys was a big part of Eby and Wogayu’s early learning, the My Own Leaptop and LeapFrog Fridge Phonics are great. We’ve honestly enjoyed every single gift (or similar) in this category. Kindles are great for reading and the Kindle Fire adds the benefit of playing educational games.
I travel quite a bit and I always love seeing kids pulling their own suitcases through the airport, like these adorable ones. When we went on a big family trip several years ago, we got all the kids rolling bags. Kids like owning their own sleeping bags – I have a child who prefers to sleep in one most nights. Some kids like the smaller youth-sized ones. Lanterns are fun for the backyard or camping; you can find cute ones for young kids and older ones.
Annual memberships to the zoo, science center, gym, pool, or anything your family loves, make great gift suggestions for grandparents.
Last, but not least, my all-time favorite – give your kids the gift of an experience with you. Take them to a concert, a play, rock climbing, skiing, pottery-painting, or stay overnight at a hotel. Make memories doing something special.
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I’m working on more gift posts, including the best classic toys, favorite games, gifts for the home, and more.
I’m also watching the Amazon daily deals and sharing the best ones on my One Thankful Mom Facebook page. I only share things I own and love, or have on my wishlist.
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Leave a comment and tell me what would add to my list of the best gifts for kids that aren’t toys.
Happy gift giving!
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