We are T-minus-5-hours until Thanksgiving vacation, and we couldn’t be more excited around here. More twinkle light strands are going up, and the baking will begin soon–accompanied, of course, with one of our favorite holiday movies on our list. That brings us to the first of the holiday gift guides this year. Friday, I’ll share THE 2017 EPIC STOCKING STUFFER LIST, my favorite guide to make every year, but today I thought I’d share some kid gift ideas based on each of my kids and what they’re loving and some favorites I’ve spotted online recently. Hopefully these help spark some ideas for those of you looking for that perfect treasure for the special little people in your own life. And that picture above? That was last year, and finding Nella’s favorite gift was easy and cheap. Nutella Nella forever.
1. Old Navy Glitter Booties – My sparkle-loving fashionista will be all over these affordable glitter booties. Now if I can just find a pair to match.
2. Kids Personalized Stationery – I remember thinking I was the coolest thing as a kid when I got my first stationery set. And with these adorable personalized note cards, they’ll be begging to write holiday thank you cards.
3. Paint Chip Poetry – Chronicle just released this a couple months ago, and I’m so excited about it. Get kids (and adults) out of robot-writing habits and easily unleash their creativity with this fun game that makes creating poems easy. Players draw paint chip cards and, given a prompt, rearrange the chips to create spontaneous beautiful (and funny) poems with the color names.
4. Yarn Unicorns – Lainey is all about making things and arts & crafts, so she’ll love these yarn unicorns. Everything’s included to create adorable yarn-bombed unicorns, and the instructions are easy to follow along.
5. Shadow Puppet Set – Can’t wait to see what kind of shows she puts on for Nella and Dash at bedtime with this full set of paper characters that create perfect shadows given a light in a dark room.
6. Cat Neck Warmer – This elongated cat cozy is filled with lavender and buckwheat, so all you have to do is throw him in the microwave to make a warm comforting pal for movie night, homework sessions or bedtime reading.
7. Little Feminists 500-Piece Puzzle – All the great role models from Maya and Frida to Sally Ride and Marie Curie, combined in a colorful puzzle that will keep her busy over Christmas break.
8. Slime DIY Book – Add a few bottles of glue, some contact solution and glitter, and this might be the favorite gift for all the 10-year-old slime chefs out there.
9. A Year Full of Stories – I love this story book, mapped out with one story a week, each matched to internationally celebrate dates, including Valentines Day and the International Day of Friendship, as well as seasonal events and festivals.
10. Creative Lettering for Kids – Combined with #11, this book contains everything budding little artists need to know–at their level–to master the art of bubble letters, artsy script and more.
11. Brilliant Brush Markers – These colorful markers write like a paintbrush.
12. Homemade Organic Bath Bombs – Turn any night into spa night with colorful homemade bath bombs (Lainey’s into all things beauty right now) that come with a bath bomb mold so kids can make their own.
13. “Starbucks” Apron – Lainey’s obsessed with Starbucks, frappuccinos and slushies, so she can be her own barista with this green apron…
14. Frappe Mixes ...these frappe mixes (bubble gum, cotton candy and cookies & cream)
15. Frozen Drink Maker …and her very own frozen drink maker.
2. Kids Cherry Apron – Helping you in the kitchen just got cuter with this pint-sized cherry apron. Lick all the spoons you want.
3. Melissa & Doug Pasta Set – Ever since Nella was a baby, spaghetti has been her favorite food. Her pasta love has expanded to include a variety of noodle shapes now, so this play food set was made for her. While we don’t have a play kitchen for space reasons, we keep all our play food toys in a bin which the kids pull out frequently to play restaurant at our dining room table.
4. Rainbow Sweater – The perfect sweater for my color-loving rainbow girl.
5. Little Edge Threads Comfy Lounge Set – One of Nella’s favorite things to do after school is to switch out her clothes to “get cozy.” This comfy little lounge set is perfect and is cute enough to pass as a day outfit.
6. Melissa & Doug Suspend Jr. Game – All my kids love pulling games out, and this balance/coordination one works great for all three.
7. Inchimals Measuring Toy – Another toy/math manipulative, these charming animal blocks are sectioned into inches and include card prompts to encourage kids to play with measurements and math.
8. Old Navy Double-Strap Jersey Tank and Galaxy Print Yoga Leggings – We’re definitely going to get Nella #8, 9 and 10 this year, and I’m so excited about giving them to her because I know how much she’ll love them. Whenever she sees me exercise at home, she always wants to join me and runs to her room to find sporty clothes. She can’t quite lift my dumbbell weights for exercise though, so she’ll be delighted with #9.
9. 2-pound dumbbell weights – Little pink dumbbells, perfectly sized and weighted so that she can keep up with my exercises and enjoy the satisfaction of working alongside me.
10. Gaiam Kids Yoga Mat – And what’s a mommy/daughter exercise session without her very own yoga mat?
11. Handheld Microphone with Built-in Speaker – Nella spends half her day barking out songs to Alexa and singing along, and she’ll love it even more with this microphone. Skip the kids’ plastic microphone toys and get this gold handheld microphone with the speaker built right in.
12. Walking Flamingo Marionette Puppet – We’re big into puppets at our house, but this one goes to new levels–it walks! I think Nella will love manipulating it and creating adventures and conversations to go along.
1. Fred’s Dinner Winner Meal Tray – Whoever invented this (was it Fred?) is brilliant. A dinner tray mapped out into sections (eat this first, then this…) so that if they eat everything along their tray path, they get the treat hidden under the cover at the end.
2. Classic Vans – Retro cool, goes with everything.
3. STEM Take-Apart Car – I’ve been researching take-apart toys because Dash really loves constructing things and solving problems. This one’s made of wood, makes up to 20 different vehicle models, and the keypad helps kids adjust the 360 degree rotating buckle.
4. Kids Gnome Apron – Dash loves to help me in the kitchen more than any of my kids, and this little apron is great for boys or girls.
5. Zara Brotherhood Sweatshirt – Cozy for cooler months, simply designed and the perfect color for winter.
6. Magna-Tiles – Magna-Tiles are one of Dash’s favorite construction toys (all my kids love them), and expanding our set means more complex designs and possibilities for their imaginations.
7. Shark Slippers – Dash loves anything fierce and ferocious with teeth, so he’ll love these adorable Jaws slippers.
8. Magic Tracks Glow Racetrack – This is the toy he’s been asking for after he saw it somewhere, and I have to admit…it looks pretty cool. Definitely one of those I’ll still be playing with after the kids walk away.
9. Squigz Set – Another fun creativity construction toy, these little Squigz are addicting to play with. They connect to each other and any flat surface with suction.
10. Wooden Marble Run – This has Dash’s name all over it, combining the fun of design and construction with dropping a marble in and watching it fly. Bonus? Made of wood.