Decluttering Christmas presents – Kids edition

I have a few stocking stuff posts (like 50 Stocking stuffers for women,  and 100+ Stocking stuffer and small gift ideas for men, and Non-candy Easter basket and stocking stuffer ideas for children) that get a bit of traffic. If you’ve read them, you know that I am a huge fan of Christmas stockings full of goodies (and present-giving in general). This year, I really want to focus on fun, family, and the meaning of Christmas, rather than all the focus be on PRESENTS! This is becoming more important as my first born gets older (he will be 2.5 years old during Christmas) and with another one on the way. Also, if you have kids, you know how quick they accumulate stuff. I don’t even know how this happens, but it seems like magically, overnight, toys have multiplied. We rarely even buy toys, encourage family to gift other things, and yet still, there is a house full of toys!

I am taking a step back from filling stockings with toys and trinkets and little things that will get lost inside the couch or thrown away in a month. Well, there may still be things that get lost inside the couch, but the point is, I am trying to avoid the junk and clutter.

Have you noticed that some of the greatest toys your little ones have played with are actually not “toys?” Stacks of cups, a cardboard box, a pen and a back of an envelope, a table cloth fort, small pumpkins from the local pumpkin patch (I kid you not, my toddler is in love with his little pumpkins) – all of these things, and more, have entertained your child and didn’t come wrapped in plastic, secured with zip ties, and then sealed in a box. They allowed the children to use their imagination. That’s why this year I am focusing my gift-giving for my child on things that will allow him to play in different ways and offer creative freedom. I am also focusing my stocking stuffers on “needs.”

It may be early to start planning Christmas gifts (and I may have gotten my cousin’s kids’ gifts already, at Target, for 70% off during their toy clearance), but my little girl is set to make her arrival in January and I just love making lists, planning a budget, and all that fun stuff. So here are a few tips I am following to decrease the amount of “stuff” we don’t need (but still have fun giving gifts), and a what I am giving my son for Christmas.

decluttering christmas

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Books kids love

I currently work at a school library that serves 1st thru 6th graders. I am in charge of making sure the children know how to use the library, check-in and check-out books, and pretty much anything else book related. I enjoy it, and believe it or not, it is actually fairly fast-paced. Also, I get a first-hand look at what books kids love! I read to the first and second graders and receive their input about the books, and I see what the 3rd-6th graders are checking out and requesting.

So what’s on the list?

favorite books for todays kids

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Creative and unique gifts for children

I am super excited to share this post with you today! I have come across some AWESOME gifts for the littles (and made sure to become an affiliate! You can read more about my affiliates HERE.)

It seems like kids these days have way too much toys! I hardly ever buy my toddler toys and I have already had to box some of them up and put them away. But what do you get kids for Christmas and their birthdays? Most kids don’t care for clothing (and they might need more clothes, either), and toys are fun, but really, how often do they really get played with?  I’m all for quality-made, imagination-inducing toys, but sometimes an experience is better.

creativegiftsforchildren

So what to gift the kids? Here are some ideas!

Little Passports is a monthly subscription where the child gets a virtual trip to a world or USA destination  – the package is filled with activities, souvenirs, fun facts, and more. They even run deals sometimes where you can gift free kits to a teacher with a minimum order.

Get Kiwi Crate's Thanksgiving Turkeys Crate! shop now ››

Kiwi Crate is another subscription based gift (but you do not need to subscribe for more than a month, if you do not want to). Choose from a large variety of crafts, or just browse their DIY tutorial section! There are so many cool craft crates to choose from, I don’t know which one is my favorite. My Godchild would love getting one of these in the mail and as a parent, I love this type of gift. PLUS they have an awesome rewards/referral program.

Green Kid Crafts is another crafty gift box subscription, but is more focused on being “green.” They have science, nature, and discovery themed kits, and even kits for birthday parties. They even have mini kits ($5.95!) for stocking stuffers!

 

Get Free Shipping on all orders at I See Me with coupon code Santa - hurry, offer ends November 14th!

I See Me has a HUGE selection of books (coloring and activity books, too) to customize, from name to picture. They even have special gifts for babies. When I was little, I LOVED the book I had with my name in the story.

 

Braided Bracelet by Darby Smart
Darby Smart is a craft gift box, too, but has all sorts of trendy projects to choose from for the older child, teen, or adult. There really is a HUGE selection of projects, from jewelry to block printing.
Refer A Friend
Abe’s Market, one of my favorite retailers, has a large selection of eco-friendly children’s toys and craft supplies that you will definitely not find in stores. I’m a fan of the bath puzzles (and only $10.99).

Where are some of your favorite places to shop for kids?