In my entire life thus far, I’ve never met a mom who has uttered the words, “My kids simply do NOT have enough toys!” I don’t think I ever will either because at one time or another, every mom I know has experienced the frustration of teaching their children to clean up after themselves and only take out 1 or 2 toys at a time.
Toys can be an important part of child development both physically and mentally and can truly inspire their imaginations. (My thoughts turn to all of the things that my son has built with his Lego set as I’m writing this!) But, kids crave quality time with their parents and loved ones and can benefit so much more from educational experiences and practical gifts!
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So, when the grandparents ask for Christmas ideas for the grandchildren this year, use this list to come up with some wonderful options that won’t clutter your home or get lost in the back of a closet or under a bed.
Non-Toy Gift Ideas for Kids
As an added bonus, all of these ideas cost under $50, and most of them are significantly cheaper than that. So, they won’t break the bank, and they are either priceless experiences that will be treasured for years to come or items that will be used again and again!
Memberships / Subscriptions
- Zoo passes
- Children’s Museum
- Adventures in Odyssey
- Magazines (i.e. Answers in Genesis, Highlights)
- Educational or game websites (i.e. ABC Mouse)
- Sponsor a child
(These can be more expensive, but you could always buy one month as a trial before making a longer commitment.)
- Martial arts
- Knitting / Sewing
- Horseback Riding
- Art / Pottery
- Rock climbing
- Camping (i.e. sleeping bag, flashlight, survival kit, etc.)
- Hunting (i.e. bow and arrow, slingshot, clothing, etc.)
- Fishing (i.e. rod and reel, bait, hooks, etc.)
- Pocket knife
- Winter clothing and accessories
- Books or e-books (Keep the Blue Manor e-books in mind!)
- Craft or Science kits (i.e. Kiwi Crate)
- Basic tool set (Every little man needs one to help around the house!)
- Sewing accessories
- Art supplies
- Piggy bank
- Recipes and Cooking tools
- Magnifying glass or Binoculars
- Plants or Seeds
- Gardening tools
- Educational apps for phone, tablet, or computer
- Chalkboard or whiteboard
- Wall decor
- Bible cover
- Music (Useful for both Christian and academic education)
- Videos (i.e. Nest, What’s in the Bible?, Creation Adventure, Answers in Genesis)
Practical Need Gifts
- Clothing (This could include dress-up items as well, though not as practical.)
- Favorite Snacks
Fun Non-Toy Gifts
- Family games
Homemade Coupon and Voucher Ideas
- Family camping trip
- Fishing trip with Mom / Dad
- Cooking time with Mom / Dad
- Family movie night with their choice of movie
- One chore performed by Mom / Dad
- Stay up 30 minutes past bedtime
- Trip to the library
- Special reading time with Mom / Dad
- Crafting or Project time with Mom / Dad
- Date night with Mom / Dad to restaurant of their choice
The coupons and gift cards for fun outings or experiences are my favorite options for both birthdays and Christmas! My children always end up appreciating our special times together or special time with grandparents so much more than toys, and they talk about them for years afterward.
I find that keeping the new toys to a limit each Christmas really helps with making sure that the holidays are truly all about the true Reason for the season and all that God has done for us.
Of course, remember to include something to unwrap with some of these ideas so that the kids have something to open that is more than just a piece of paper! For example, for the movie night coupon, you could wrap up some popcorn, or for a dance lesson, you could wrap whatever dance shoes may be required. You can be as creative as you want!
Do you have any great non-toy gift ideas to add to this list? Comment below! Please share any thoughts or experiences you and your family have had as a result of exchanging non-toy presents at Christmas as well.