Hi there, friends!! So for the last couple of years my little family and I have had a little “rule” in place that for Christmas our kiddos would receive a certain amount of gifts. Gifts that are practical but still fun. And of course gifts that the kids have shown interest in. Our main reason for doing this was because we really want to focus our hearts on the true meaning of Christmas, the birth of our Savior. It’s important that we teach our children what the core of Christmas is truly about. We give gifts to celebrate Jesus’s birthday. I want our Christmas to be centered around Him and not centered around things. So about 3.5 years ago I had read a blog post that I found through Pinterest (I can’t remember the source, unfortunately) but the blogger talked about how her family approached Christmas presents for the kiddos. Each kiddo receives 4 gifts.
Something they want, something they need, something to wear
and something to read.
How neat is that!? I feel like its such a great little guide. I can’t say that we follow it super strictly because we do also include little odds and ends in their stockings. but, I don’t really consider those “presents” because it’s usually only a couple little things like a chocolate bar, fun socks, a little match box car…things like that. So far it’s worked really well for our family and I really don’t see us doing it any other way.
This is also the first year we’ve ever “done” Santa. We aren’t anti Santa or anything it just wasn’t something we made a huge deal about and our kiddos never really showed much interest. But this year is a whole other story with Braedan being in school. He wanted to go see Santa at the mall and write him a letter. So my husband and I are playing along and enjoying the magic of it all.
I’m still trying to figure out a good way to include Santa into the mix so if you have any suggestions…I’m all ears. I did make sure his letter to Santa included ideas for all 4 areas, want, need, wear, read…so I think I covered my bases there.
Anyhoo…all that to say today I wanted to share a little gift guide for you with our top 10 favorite toys. We actually have all but one of these toys. We’ve accumulated them over the years through Christmas and birthdays and aside from legos these are the toys my kids play with the majority of the time.
One. Bright Bbaby colors, abc, & numbers first words (First 100 – we got this for my first son when he was just a baby and it’s been very well loved. Now my younger son loves it just as much as my first. And you can tell it’s practically falling apart. It’s a must have for sure! The pictures are bright and I love that its educational.
Two. Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Piggy Bank – of all the plastic toys out there I think this one is my favorite. Both my boys love it and my 5 years old will still play with it at times. Mainly if they are playing kitchen or grocery store. But it really is a cute little toy.
Three. Lauri Shape & Color Sorter – We love love love these this sorter set. This little set really helped my kiddos learn colors and matching. We still play with this often!
Four. Peaceable Kingdom Race to the Treasure! Award Winning Cooperative Game for Kids – this game is on my to buy list. I think it seems like a fun educational game. I’d love to know if you have it or if you’ve played it and what your thoughts are?
Five. LeapFrog My Own Leaptop, Green – we love this little computer. Another great educational toy. This really helped me to teach my older son his ABCs and letter sounds!
Six. Melissa & Doug Shape Sorting Clock – Wooden Educational Toy – we love wooden toys in our house. This is fun as just a puzzle but now it’s coming in handy to actually teach my son how to tell time. Definitely a winner!
Seven. The Learning Journey Match It! Bingo, Picture Word – my 5 year old loves this bingo game. I got him this for his birthday when I had out second baby and it really came in handy for those first several weeks when all you do all day is hold and feed a newborn, haha. It was easy to play while I had my hands full.
Eight. Melissa & Doug Slice and Bake Wooden Christmas Cookie Play Food Set – this was a Christmas present from a family member a few years ago and my boys still play with it daily! We really love Melissa and Doug toys.
Nine. Melissa & Doug Magnetic Wooden Fishing Game and Puzzle With Wooden Ocean Animal Magnets – this was also a gift from someone several years ago and it’s still a favorite toy. My boys love puzzles and this one is colorful, fun, and I think it really helps with fine motor skills.
Ten. Educational Insights Raccoon Rumpus Game – this is my 5 year olds favorite game. This was a birthday present last year and I even really enjoy playing it. Definitely a must have if your kiddos like games.
I’m also sharing some of our favorite books here, incase you need ideas for something to read!
Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book // The Day the Crayons Quit // Paw Patrol Phonics Box Set (PAW Patrol) (Step into Reading) // The Jesus Storybook Bible Deluxe Edition: With CDs // Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Road Trip // If You Give a Moose a Muffin // Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site // Little Blue Truck’s Christmas // God Gave Us Christmas
We also love puzzles and now that my first son is older its been fun to start doing bigger ones together. The Dollar Store is actually a great place for puzzles or the Dollar Spot at Target. I’ve also found reasonable priced puzzles at Walmart. We kind of love puzzles so I’ve scoped many places out haha!
Thank you for stopping by. I hope this post gave you some great ideas for those special little people in your life! Blessings Friends! As always you can find me on Instagram – @thehomemakingmomma and Pinterest!
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