Do you feel like your kids have everything? I do, but my kids really have everything under the sun. (I think our family members have a shopping problem.)
For years, I’ve told people – do not buy my kids more than one present for their birthday or Christmas. No one ever listens to me. My kids always get too much, and I’m sure yours do too.
Studies show that experiences make people happier than material things, so let’s cut down the clutter and give more experiences.
If you’re based in Palm Beach County like I am, don’t forget to check out the EveryParent app by the Children Services Council of Palm Beach County.
I suggest heading to the Children Services Council of Palm Beach County website and searching “holidays” for some great information, including how to diffuse those awkward conversations when family comes into town. It will also come in handy for some of these items on my list.
Now, let’s get back to the non-toy gift ideas for kids!
15 Non-Toy Gift Ideas for Kids
1. Personalized Books
My kids LOVE to read. Both of my kids have full bookshelves in their rooms and every Sunday, you can find us at the library. Of course, books always make a great gift, but why not go the extra mile and get them a personalized book?
I just ordered a book by Hooray Heroes called The Adventures of Landon and Julianna. I got to choose what adventures they went on and even got to design the characters in the book just like my real life Landon and Julianna.
2. Tickets to an Event
We don’t miss a Disney on Ice performance. When Paw Patrol comes to town, we are there! Even as an adult, I’ll never forget the Carrie Underwood concert my sister and I went to a few years ago because my dad got us tickets for Christmas.
Tickets to an event make a great gift because it gives your child something to look forward to (and it doesn’t take up any space in the closet).
3. Art Classes, Music Classes, Dance Classes, etc.
My kids are very active and love doing different things, like soccer for example.
This gives your child something to look forward to, but do you know what’s even better? Doing a class together! Depending on the class, you could team up and enjoy the experience together – cooking, art, or something else.
If there’s a zoo or museum in your area, a membership would make a gift. Not only will it provide your family something to do on a regular basis, but you won’t feel rushed when you attend these places.
Plus, when you buy a membership, you can save and it may pay off after a few visits.
Because I live in Palm Beach County, I use EveryParent App or head to the Children Services Council of Palm Beach County website to see all the fun places nearby that have memberships. It’s like one-stop shopping!
…and I suggest a membership to the Palm Beach Zoo!
5. Subscription Box
Who doesn’t love snail mail?! I regularly subscribed to Birch Box and Ipsy and looked forward to the surprises inside every few weeks.
Nothing made my daughter happier than her Little Loving Hands subscription. There are so many others to choose from that include educational activities, outdoor activities, and even how to give back (like Little Loving Hands did for my daughter).
Another great subscription box by a fellow Boss Mom is Two Pink Balloons. This one comes with all kinds of great goodies for kids to learn AND play.
6. Musical Instrument
My kids have so much fun with their microphone, guitar, and drum set that I had to include this in here. I don’t call these toys because they can be educational experiences. (A music class would be a great addition to this gift.)
7. One-on-One Outings
My kids love it when I say, “Do you want to go on a date?” It means one-on-one time at a location of their choice and it’s always fun!
Again, if you’re in Palm Beach County, make sure you download the EveryParent App to see all the fun spots you and your little one(s) can enjoy.
8. Kitchen Tools
Since my daughter was two, we’ve had our own cooking show we call “Baking with Bunny”. One year, my aunt got my kid’s kitchen tools to use when we were baking together. Now, we use them every time we cook or bake something together.
These fun kiosks pop up around the holidays and make me want a calendar so bad! For kids, it’s even better because they act as a teaching tool to give them a concept of time. I know my little ones are always asking how long until… movie night, or vacation, or someone’s birthday.
10. Toys… for charity
Speaking of having too many toys already (hence the reason for this list), giving a toy to someone in need is a great gift.
When my daughter had a subscription to Little Loving Hands, she would send the craft she made to someone in need. Never once did she want to keep it because she loves making things for others.
You can also let your child choose a charity or find a Christmas giving program in your area. My kid’s previous daycare did this every year.
I love this gift because it builds character.
11. Art and Craft Supplies
My daughter could spend all day everyday crafting… and it’s fun! You could buy everything for one craft for everyone to do together or mix it up with a bunch of things like pom-poms, sparkly paper, scissors, etc.
This gift is appropriate for kids of all ages… and adults. I grew up on Bob Ross, so I’m loving this idea!
Again, we’re mixing the fun with education. You can also get so many kinds of puzzles and do them together as a family.
There is nothing better than a family game night. I love playing games. Depending on the game, you could learn more about each other and have conversations. Vertellis is a great option for that. You can also get physical and run around the house. Where’s Olaf is a hit in our house that has us searching nooks and crannies.
14. Homemade Coupons
A book of coupons almost acts like a reward for kids if you make the coupons fun for them to cash in. Some examples include:
- “A trip to the nail salon for a manicure/pedicure with Mom,”
- “Stay up one hour past bedtime,” and
- “Surprise movie night with popcorn!”
15. Restaurant Gift Card
Going out to eat is one of my favorite things to do… maybe it’s because I don’t cook. Pick a restaurant that is fun or has a special meaning to get your little one excited about eating out.
Don’t forget to check out the EveryParent App for some local things to include on your Christmas list if you’re in the Palm Beach area like I am. For more parenting ideas, click here to download the EveryParent App.
I’m required to disclose a relationship between my blog and Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County. This could include me being provided with content, product, access, service, or other forms of payment.