Thursday, November 20, 2008

Stumped

I am stumped about what to give my kids for Christmas. I have lots of ideas for the little things. That won't be a problem. And they will buy small toys for each other. But usually I have one "big ticket" item to give them. This is the one that is stumping me.

Now by "big ticket" I mean it is either the most expensive gift they get or it really is just large or just really nice even if it didn't cost so much. This year I want to keep the gifts somewhat on the less expensive side. I also want the gift to be something that will be well used and loved. 

I had a great idea for this gift. I decided to give each girl her own bean bag. I found a company who made really cute ones for about $60. That is right about what I had budgeted. I got all set to order them and then found that they were on back order till after the 17th of December. Bummer. We could use some fun seating like that in the loft for the kids to sit and read books. All the other bean bags I have found with nice filling are about $100. That is a bit out of my budget this year.

So now I am back to square one on the "big ticket" item. I am open to ideas. What are you getting your kids for Christmas this year? Anyone doing any homemade treasures? My kids are just not asking for anything that I would actually get them. I am avoiding anymore technology stuff this year. What do your 3 5 and 7 year olds love to play with most? Give a girl an idea or two PLEASE!

44 comments:

Rachael said...

My 3 year old is getting some Fancy Nancy books and dress-ups, and a little glamour set from the Disney movie Enchanted (she is obsessed with it). My 5 year old is getting a Fisher-Price digital camera, an Easy Bake oven, and lots of art supplies and kits (really cheap at Hobby Lobby). She's also getting some personalized folders and pencils from Lillian Vernon.

Good luck!

Noorda Notebook said...

these are so freaking cute. and in your budget. check it out:

http://www.potterybarnkids.com/products/k4132/index.cfm?pkey=xsrd0m1%7C12%7C%7C%7C1%7C%7C%7C%7C%7C%7C%7Cbean%20bag%20chair&cm%5Fsrc=SCH

sometimes that place is way overpriced but other times it's not too bad.

my stay-at-home-momma drama said...

For some seating, have you looked at the Anywhere Chair from Pottery Barn Kids?

Marylin and Jimmy said...

Well I decided to make them each a blanket this year! I made my older two 9 & 4 some a few years ago and they have used and abused them soo much that I decided to make them some more. I decided to do them all different Monkey materials cause I always tell them they are monkey's and then I might make them some pillows or something to go with them! Oh and I forgot for my girls I am also making them crayon aprons or some type of aprons! We are trying to do very simple and heart felt gifts this year so that is my take!

Tara L. said...

My 3 year old is getting a stroller for her dolls, and a tea set. I also made her an I spy quilt. I just used random bright fabrics of whatever on it. I got the idea from here.http://www.makeandtakes.com/mini-i-spy-quilts

Julie said...

my 5 year old wants a cash register.

my 3 year old loves Pet Shop but my husband says no airways obstructions (of course) . : ) so i think she'll be getting ANOTHER ballet outfit, head to toe. maybe ill add in a wand from the disney store.

for 7 year olds, my friends daughter LOVES american girl dolls. VERY wholesome. you could go crazy with that stuff. books, outfits. a great, lovely alternative to the mainstream Bratz, Barbie, yucky. well that's how i feel about them no offense anyone that's just us!

please share what you decide on! if it makes you feel any better, both my girls have bean bags from pottery barn and have sat on them maybe 2 times--- they otherwise use them to stack on their beds which is dangerous : )

Anonymous said...

My girls (3 and 5) are getting a puppet theater. They make great wooden ones, but for space reasons, I am going with one that you can suspend in a doorway. Both versions run about $70. I am also buying a stock of puppets, different characters and animals. I figure I can get a bunch for about $45.

Mel said...

http://www.target.com/gp/search/180-1869917-1539448?field-keywords=bean%20bag%20chair&afid=google&CPNG=Furniture&LNM=bean_bag_chair&LID=6390738&ref=tgt_adv_XSGT1543

Target - dorm bean bag chair

They are kids, so I don't think they'd mind not having the best filling available. When I was younger, my parents got me a bean bag chair.... that thing was AWESOME, only now I realize that it really wasn't.

Other than that, I don't know. When I was young, I really liked horses. I played with these things:

http://www.modelhorseguide.com/articles/grandchampions.htm

So cool! My big gifts growing up were a barbie house that my dad built for me (easily my favorite gift EVER), dolls (one time I got a little lego house except for girls, that was sweet), computer games... stuff like that. Oh, I got an Easy Bake oven. Those are awesome!

Something that my dad did for all of us was that for each year we were alive, he got us a yearly edition of something (stamps for me, baseball cards for my brother, and coins for my sister). You could start something like that.

I don't know... I have no kids, so I can't help out with modern day. But I was a kid relatively recently. :)

Kara Jayne said...

I've thought about the bean bags too but they are pricey! My 2 1/2 year old is getting a kitchen set, the other three kids are getting scooters. After that ...I'm stumped too! Good luck.

Amanda said...

I'm going to be making my girls, 2 and 4 some tutus and probably some fairy wings. They love to dress up and my 4 year old is obsessed with fairys.

Kelli said...

My mother has a great pattern for bean bag chairs if you're up for sewing them yourself. They are really big and lots of fun. She made one for each of us when we were little. Great gift! - Kelli

Becca said...

I'm making my girls some felt play food--look on Etsy--there's this whole world of amazing felt creations for the little play kitchens. I'm doing some cakes and tarts and cookies for them.

RhondaLue said...

I'm getting my 3 yr old a ride on toy for outside and probably a small playset of some sort.

My older kids told me their favorite gifts ever was the year I made them all Harry Potter Quillows (remember them!?). Then I made them each a scrapbook for a gift and my daughter still tells her friends that it is her most treasured possession and it was just of her sweet 16 party--not much else. This year they lost their grandpa (my dad) so I'm still thinking of some memorable thing to give them that will help them remember gramps. A scrapbook maybe, a memory shadowbox...not sure. I'd better get on it soon though!

denisejorgy said...

You could go with a kitchen set for all three with fake food and maybe a shopping cart. They have darling ones at Target that are wooden or if you want a plastic one they have those too anywhere. I love toys that they have to use their imaginations with. Good Luck.

Karalee said...

I was just looking for something that encouraged imaginative play for my three year old and I found Silkies in the Chinaberry catalog. They are oversized scarves that can be used in lots of different ways. I remember playing with them at my grandmother's and we loved them.
http://www.chinaberry.com/prod.cfm/pgc/11900/sbc/11903/inv/2804

Sleepless In St. George said...

I know I have boys your girls age, but a favorite at our house is SnapCircuits. They are different electrical pieces that fit together and for circuits. They come with booklets that have different experiements for them to try like "fire alarm" or "machine gun" (makes the sounds) or "door bell that claps on". It is a big hit with kids that like to leggo or do experiments. Even my 11 year old and her cousin enjoy them...heck even their dads love them! Not a ton of money for what you get!

Kathryn_m said...

At around that age, I made all my children a hand made quilt (can be done on machine too). One neat thing about them is that they were made using some of their baby clothes (blankets) but .. THE REALLY NEAT THING is that they had a "pocket" (envelop) across one end to keep their feet warm while watching a movie. THE VERY NEATEST PART is that the entire quilt would fold into this pocket to make a pillow. They all loved them and some even took them off to university! They are about the size of a crib matress -- so more of a wrap than a quilt. Also great for attending outdoor sports events. I embroidered their initials on the "pocket". Each year thereafter, I would put a small gift in the pocket on New Year's Eve. Usually hat, scarf and mitts - not sure you need them in Nevada:)

When the girls were about 7 or 8, their Dad bought them a beautiful heart-shaped Sterling locket (that opened two ways to make to a 4-leaf clover - hence room for 4 pics) that they could wear on very special occasions - one even wore it at her wedding. Other than their baby braclets, it was the first piece of "real' jewellery they were given and it was so special coming from Dad. I think it was the same year we bought the girls a nice jewelery box too.

I read recently that bean bags, depending on their weight, pose a smothering risk to small crawling babies.

Have you thought of starting them on a China doll collection?

It was around that age I started to buy them their very own (usually musical) Christmas ornament to make sure that memories of their childhood Christmases would go with them into adult life.

Many great ideas passed along in these posts. I know youwill come up with something just perfect.

love 'n hugs,
kathryn_m

Cally said...

Several others have also mentioned this... how about a quilt.

Kathryn_m said...

I should clarify - didn't meant to imply that I made 4 quilts all at once. Each child received one at about tha same age. Same goes for the lockets and stuff. I did buy them an ornament from the time they were born. As they left the nest, they had quite a nice array of ornaments for their home. I always made sure to put the date on them too. Their advent calendars became their personal keepsake as well.

Also, you use the quilt with the pocket side down so that cold toes don't keep peeking out from under. They make great travel companions too.

Best wishes.

Dan said...

I'm not sure I can help you with the $60 but disposable cameras are a pretty awesome stocking stuffer when you are a kid.

Becky said...

What about art supplies? A child's size easel like this one:
http://www.madisonartshop.com/humakieak.html
plus all of the trimmings... paints, brushes, caulk, crayons, colored pencils, finger paints, paper etc.

Nan said...

I make bean bags for kids and would be happy to make some for your girls for Christmas:) Almost all of my nieces and nephews have them and they love them. I can email you a picture of one with my son (13 months) on his. I love making them and it would be no trouble. Just let me know the color or particular pattern for each girl (pink, yellow, butterflies, dogs, etc.). I'm making a huge one for my brother in law for Christmas, so it would be no problem to make a few more while I'm already at my sewing machine. I make them out of fleece and stuff them with shredded foam (like the "Love Sacs"). The covers are washable and close with velcro. Seriously and sincerely, let me know:) I live in SE Vegas. You can email me if you want leannealise@aol.com.

Anonymous said...

Hi Stephanie,

I am having the same problem this year. I feel that I am just buying "things" for them because it is expected. Not because they particularly need or want them.

I asked Thomas and Charlotte to write a Santa list to give me ideas. Thomas wrote down "happiness". I was stunned. I checked that he was happy now. He said he wanted to keep being happy. How's that for an 8 year old boy? Don't worry though....he had an Ipod on his list too....!

I'm going for "action" items I think. Although I love all the suggestions here for personalised quilts. Lovely.

Love to you,

Jane

kastelicfam said...

Babystyle www.babystyle.com has cute animal themed bean bag type chairs. They are around $60 and so cute. We have the one and bith my girls love them. You can order online. Also, if you spend $100 you can get "baby bucks" which will give you $25 off your next purchase of $50.

Sue said...

My daughter-in-law is making quilts for each child. I am getting a locket for my granddaughter.

The "Street" Clairs said...

I made large pillows for my brother-in-law's entire family 2 years ago and just taught how to make them at super saturday. It would be less expensive than a bean bag chair and you could personalize but it does require sewing.... (they cost as little as fifteen dollars but as expensive as you want too).

Since we don't have kids I don't have any great ideas on a big ticket item but this year we are giving gifts of time to everyone and each taking $15 dollars to make something for one another. I am excited to see what Mike comes up with for me.

Stacey said...

I bought some furniture online this year from a store in MN called The Bean Bag Store. They were very easy to work with. Check them out I know they have bean bags. They run about $70.00
http://www.thebeanbagstore.com

Amy M. said...

I made my children an "I Spy" quilt. My seven year old still loves to play the quilt game. Email me and I can send you pictures. amym@fnbames.com

Rachel said...

My seven year old and five year old daughters are getting 18" Madame Alexander Dolls from Costco and the My Generation Camping Set (comes with a pop up tent, sleeping bag, and a few other items.) I'm going to set it all up so it's the first thing they see in the Morning. All in all it only ended up being about $45.00 Good luck!

Marcee said...

If you still want to get bean bags that are great quality and adorable, try www.thecompanystore.com Their bags are only $39 and the inserts are $30. Not too far off your budget and you can personalize them!

Anonymous said...

I haven't read through the comments yet so this might be a repeat. You can get them each a nice locket and put of picture of themselves with Camille. And when they are having a hard day and missing her, all they have to do is open their locket and remember their sweet baby sister. And when they wear it around their necks they will always have Camille close to their heart.

Good luck!

Lexie

Blog Buddy said...

Jaden wants a penguin-I'm not sure why, but that shouldn't be too hard to find! He still happy playing Star Wars with his Halloween Costume:)

Anonymous said...

Have you checked out Lillian Vernon?
http://www.lillianvernon.com/catalog/thumbnail.jsp?parentCatId=2&catId=9&subCatId=48
They are $69.99 and they're really cute because they will personalize them for you and it says to make sure you get them before Christmas you need to order them by Dec. 6.

cmhl said...

I have a 7 year old and a 10 year old, and they love "brain age" for nintendo DS. not sure how your feel about video games like that--- I use them for a reward--- like they earn so many stickers by doing so many chores above and beyond what is expected, and they get 1 hour of DS on the weekend. something like that.

Heather Jaworski said...

My kids (ages 1,3,5,6) LOVE Anywhere chairs from Pottery Barn Kids.

Seesalou said...

since you have to buy the insert and the cover, the pottery barn 'anywhere chair' really isn't in your budget. i am loving the idea someone above gave about a puppet theater and puppets. think of all the plays & family night lessons/activities that you could use that for. anything where they have to use their imagination is great, i think. good luck. and thanks for letting the rest of us get all of this great advice along with you!

The Webb Family said...

I have been following your Blog for sometime (my Sister in Law is in your Ward) and have never commented. I just can't seem to find any 'good' words to say, well until now. LOL

Another thought in addition to all of these ideas already is a Vanity Set. My daughter (4) loves dressing up and that is what she getting this year. I think that and some play make up or hair stuff will be great for a little girl.

I TOO like the puppet theatre. Good Luck!

Six-Pack Momma said...

I ran into the bean nag dilema a few years ago and made my own. It was really quite easy and I found some shredded foam to fill it so it is super soft, not crunchy like the ones you buy. If you want more details, e-mail me.

Anonymous said...

My sister in law bought some bean bags from Overstock.com a year or so ago. I don't know if you have looked on there before. Just a suggestion.

Jennifer Garbett said...

I'm late chiming in but couldn't pass up an idea that I thought might be good for your girls. My neighbor did this last year for her 3 similar aged girls up in her loft. She called around to Antique stores and bought 2 old school antique desks and a couple of the "school" plastic chairs (wasn't too expensive either). She bought a chalkboard to mount on the wall and decopaged(sp) the outside wood frame with scrapbook paper. She had written on the chalkboard welcome to school and had lots of school/art supplies ready. The girls play "school" with their friends all the time. Also, pottery barn has a wooden bar with small buckets you can mount on the wall for all the school supplies that's not too inexpensive. Good luck...happy planning!

Ben and Amy Young said...

You've had a bunch of comments so I don't know if you'll even get to mine. This year I am giving each of my children a homemade gift. For my little boy a big magnet board so he can hand up his school work in his room. He hates to put tape on them or poke holes in them. Along the sides it reads in vynal, Create, Dream, Imagine, and his name. For my little girl I made a board that reads in vynal, Look what I did... then there are 4 flowers and under each flower is a clothes pin to hang her art work. Hope that helps.

Emily Sherinian said...

I just had the same frustrating "backordered" experience. Instead, we're going to look at a modest dollhouse with accessories, a Razor Scooter for the 5 year old, a large Aquadoodle drawing mat, and for our big family gift- the BBC Planet Earth DVD series. My mother in law is getting us a popcorn popper for our family movie nights, which I think is a great idea too. Good luck!! -Em

Tiffany Robinson said...

My daughter who is 5 is a little artist. I decided to get her alot of little things like....her very own stapler, pencil sharpener, dry erase board and pens to go with it. I took my label maker and wrote her name on everything so she really knows it's hers. Even a little garbage can that you step on the pedal and it opens.

Anonymous said...

Boon makes a bag that you stuff with stuffed animals and it becomes a bean bag of sorts.