Gift Guide: For the Kiddos

Children are the most fun to shop for! I’m always thinking about them, even if mine have started being more specific with their requests. Here are some gift suggestions for the kiddos… 

MakeDo Construction Kit. They can get to work immediately (all the boxes!). Bonus: they might stop using up all your tape.

Magic Butterflies. Place a few in a book for a beautiful surprise. Their little minds will be blown!

Kiwi Crate Pinball Machine. My kids would love to build their own pinball machine! There’s a cute, customizable one by Plan Toys, too, but we’ve had a lot of successes with Kiwi Crates at all ages. Giant bubbles looks great, too.

Smiley-Face Basketball. Because it will look cuter when you trip over it on the floor.

Adjustable, color-in-able inline skates. You can use these over five sizes of growing feet. Brilliant. Don’t forget wrist guards, knee-pads and and a helmet! Scooters, skateboards, and—for the youngest—balance bikes are great holiday gifts, too.

Treasure Blocks. For the mini-hoarders… er, collectors. (So. Many. Collections.)

A dollhouse to match your own home’s style. These are strong enough to sit on, if pretend turns more King Kong than Marie Kondo.

Bath Toys are always a good idea. Kitpas bath crayons are great. Unicorn Poo bath bombs might be a winner even with a tween.

Friendship Bracelet Tattoos. Oso & Me sells the cutest patterns and all their temporary tattoos are awesome.

Perplexus Maze Ball. It’s basically a 3D marble run: you shift, flip, and twist the sphere to guide the marble on 22 feet worth of track with a series of barriers. It does make some noise as the ball rolls around, but it’s pretty unobtrusive.

My Calendar. A beautiful piece that can be toy or art, depending on where they’re at. (Sold at Bitte online, but it’s a lovely, local shop if you’re in Sacramento.)

A first watch. Here’s a round-up of some favorites. Tip: Go for waterproof.

Mancala. I love this game of strategy and recall playing it at my elementary school playground. It travels, has a simple and pleasing design, and you can use pebbles if you lose a piece. (Here’s an old post about the game.)

Pretend-play clothes. (These Meri Meri Dress-up pieces are so cute! And I love the knitted scarves! Like a Puppy or a flamingo or an alligator! Gah!)

You, Me, We. (Hudson and I have been slowly filling in these books together).Us: A Compendium has a similar vibe. Some other winners recently: Silly Jokes for Silly Kids (Because “you’re so silly” is the highest compliment), the Ramona series, Percy Jackson novels, and Mac B Kid Spy. And don’t forget the gift of books in general! Give them a ticket for a date to get their very own library card, if they don’t have one yet. Or wrap up some small bills and take them shopping at a used book store.

Not pictured: Other perennial favorites at our house are Real Origami Paper (it matters), A responsive Yo-Yo (Hudson tells me that the Fizz is the absolute best for beginners), Rubik’s Cubes (all with the help of some YouTube tutorials), and all kinds of soft, fuzzy dolls for snuggling.

What are the children in your life asking for this year? 

P.S. The best children’s gifts are timeless enough to please year after year. If these ideas aren’t working, take a look at these gift guide from the past few years. The link is below each image.


2018—Skyler circled that door-pong in a catalogue this year, and they still play with magnatiles

2017—I used to carry a couple of those multi-color crayons in my purse at all times

2016—Hudson took that camera all over Italy one summer

2015—I bet the kids would still enjoy that little fairy door!

(If you find a broken link, try googling the item—but most should still be available.)

Also, a fun way to wrap up the smallest gifts for kids.



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