Man, I just cannot get enough of other people’s gift guides. I am constantly searching for new ideas, especially for kids. Between my own brood and my nieces and nephews, I need to cover just about every age range. So if you have ideas, let’s hear them!
I’ve been wanting to make my own gift guide post, but November is just kicking my butt. I have never been so busy. It’s clear I am just not going to have time to make a beautiful post full of pictures and loving descriptions. Instead, you’re going to get bullet points. Just the facts, ma’am!
So here’s some no-frills ideas, from youngest to oldest.
My one-year-old nephew is getting some adorable clothes, and also this Lil’ Shopper Play Set which is crazy cute.
Three-year-old Little Miss Sunshine has been talking for ages about how all she wants is “a pencil” and for ages we could not figure out why she only wanted a pencil, when we had like, a hundred of them just sitting in the bin in the office for her use. Then one day we realized she meant Rapunzel (ohhhhhhhh), and so she’s getting this one. She’s also surprisingly into trains. Thomas the Tank Engine is my go-to toy for three-year-old boys, but she’s been loving the Captain’s collection so she’s getting her very own girl train, Molly.
My five-year-old nephew, HMan, is just on the cusp of getting into Star Wars, I found him an R2D2 shirt and a Yoda shirt at Old Navy that is definitely going to make me The Cool Aunt. He’s also totally into The Superhero Years (ages 4-6, and Buzz Lightyear counts, by the way). So he is also getting this Spiderman Zoom and Go Racer. Coooool.
Six-year-old Gal Smiley is always the hardest to shop for, because she doesn’t like traditional girly stuff and we already have a ton of boyish stuff. She is quite sporty and has been wanting a skateboard for ages, so we are giving her a very small toddler-sized one from Toys R Us. I couldn’t find it on their website but they had tons at the Merivale store, it was only $10, and it’s pink with a bunny on it. She is so going to love it – and the elbow and knee pads too.
She’s also getting an Easy Bake Oven, which I’m very nervous about. I tried to avoid it altogether, but it’s what she really really wants, and they’re everywhere so she sees one every single time we go out. One thing that really worried me about this toy is that the mixes for it, aside from costing AN ARM AND A LEG AND THEN ANOTHER LEG, contain egg and milk and are may-contain for peanuts and tree nuts. All of that is bad for our house. Happily I found many from-scratch recipes online, like the zillions at this site, so we can make safer and cheaper treats. It seems that in general you can make any cake/cookie recipe in there as long as you cut down the quantity sufficiently, and anything you can do in a toaster oven is fair game too.
Seven-year-old Captain Jelly Belly is still super into Lego but we have a metric ton of the stuff already. Luckily there are new Lego board games out this year, so he’s getting one of those. There are so many to choose from, it’s hard to know what’s good and what’s not, but in the end I settled on Race 3000, because the Captain often plays this game already at home via his own design and invention. He’s also getting this Lego watch – they make all kinds of different styles and colours – because it is cool and it’s all You’re A Big Boy Now and stuff. Sniff.
My nine-year-old nephew is at a cuspy kind of age, and we’re still not sure what to get him. I am leaning towards a more complex Lego set of some sort – the kind that will keep him busy all through the holidays – or maybe a magnet set or some other kind of building set. I am also considering a subscription to National Geographic Kids – the Captain gets this magazine and he loves it, and there’s the bonus of getting personal mail all year long.
My thirteen-year-old nephew is hitting Gift Card age. I find it to be really hard to buy for teens, especially boys. The past few years we have bought him books (he is an avid reader) and/or video games. We could do the same this year but I feel like we’ve been there, and done that. Now that he’s getting a little older I feel like he’s maybe ready for some cool boy gadgets, like say a Swiss Army Knife, a strategy game like Ticket To Ride or Risk, a nice leather wallet, or maybe an iTunes gift certificate.
My last nephew is 15 and that’s a hard one. There’s no way you can pick out clothes or CDs for a 15-year-old boy. Computer games are a possibility, and my nephew really likes music so we have in the past bought him subscriptions to Rolling Stone or Spin. Now that he’s old enough to get out and about, we’re also thinking about movie gift certificates, or tickets to sporting events or concerts (except that he is into weird thrash metal from England, so I’m guessing tickets to see the Jonas Brothers are not going to fly). I also have sports jerseys on my list, but I’ll probably go gift card here. Bleh.
My 17-year-old niece, on the other hand, is so much fun to buy for. One word: Etsy. It’s chock full of pretty jewelry, cute handbags, fancy soaps and creams, funky paper products, lovely scarves, and beautiful artwork to hang in her room. I just love shopping for her – I could surf on Etsy forever! MyFriendJen had another great idea, and that was to get her a gift card for clothes — and then actually take her shopping. Getting out of the house, without her parents, and having the opinion of The Cool Aunt – SOLID GOLD. I love this idea.
I almost forgot…Santa! Santa will be bringing our little muchkins a copy of Toy Story 3, to round out our collection. He’ll also be bringing this cool Snow Castle/Snow Ball Construction Set. I ordered mine online, but you can buy the pieces separately at Tagalong Toys in Kanata.
Whew. I thought this was going to be a short post!