Non-Toy Christmas gifts for toddlers

I know Christmas is still a wee while away but toys, and the way they seem to take over your house when you have kids is a subject dear to my heart.  I am not anti-toy.  There are many wonderful toys out there which become cherished possessions.  I myself still have my Belle doll (Snoopy’s sister, who had a dazzling array of outfits, complete with a hole for her tail) that my Mum saved for me.  Heck, I still love Belle.

What I hate is how many toys kids have today.  It’s crazy.  I am constantly fighting the flow of toys in my own house.  In fact, I swear they breed, because one day Sausage held up a toy that I’d never seen before in my life.  Despite being selective as to what toys my children have, I still find myself culling them every few months and donating full-sized bags to charity.

I think it’s really hard for the older generation in particular to understand that children today are drowning in stuff.  People my parents age were lucky if they had a train set and a doll.  Childhood is very different now.  Toys are readily available, often cheap (and nasty, so they break within seconds), and it’s just the done thing to give them as gifts for Christmas and birthdays.

Today many children have so many toys that their parents have to devise cunning rotation systems, so the toys aren’t all out at once.  More and more children have entire rooms dedicated to their toys.  The ‘rise of the playroom’ is an interesting phenomenon I’ve noticed of late (When I was little, I knew one other kid who had a ‘rumpus room’ and boy was I jealous of them!).

If the toys are breeding at your house, and you want to stem the tide, here are some non-toy Christmas gift alternatives for the toddlers in your life.  And if you’re an aunt, uncle, grandparent or friend, you might find these ideas more appealing than braving The Warehouse toy section on Christmas Eve…

  1. pyjamas
  2. bathrobe
  3. beach towel
  4. sleeping bag and torch/flashlight
  5. trip to the movies
  6. trip to the ice cream parlour
  7. pony ride
  8. pay class fees for a term e.g. ballet, kindy gym
  9. clothes
  10. shoes
  11. a special one-on-one outing somewhere really cool
  12. garden tools/gloves/seeds
  13. birdhouse and binoculars
  14. photo album all about them
  15. quiet book
  16. tool box and real kid-sized tools
  17. art easel
  18. noticeboard to display their artwork
  19. duvet cover
  20. dress up clothes
  21. jewellery box
  22. hair ties and hair clips
  23. poster/art for their bedroom wall
  24. magnifying glass
  25. their very own box of chocolates(!)
  26. calendar
  27. sunhat
  28. swimsuit
  29. tent
  30. lunchbox
  31. piggy bank
  32. wallet or purse with a few coins in it
  33. wooden name sign for their bedroom door
  34. toddler couch (my kids have one that was inexpensive which folds out into a bed)
  35. cutlery set/plate/bowl
  36. drink bottle
  37. hairbrush and hair ties
  38. suitcase/travel bag (ones they can sit on are great)
  39. clock (weary parents love gro clocks)
  40. first aid kit
  41. And my favourite, books

 

This Christmas give gifts that last, that children really need, and that get them out and about exploring the world.

 

 

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