Most parents agree, their kids don't need any more kid gear piling up. Yet, we can't help but celebrate birthdays, milestones, holidays and any other occasion with a present, however small. But for some kids, especially ones that have older siblings and get toys and games passed down, there's not much they really want or need. So what do you get the kid that has it all? Read on to find out.
Finding Something Special
If you have more than one child this has probably happened to you: You're trying to figure out what to get your daughter for her 5th birthday but she already has the dollhouse, all the horses, dolls upon dolls, so many stuffed animals and just about anything she has desired over the last couple years. The same happens with sons too, just substitute superheros, cars and building tools. So what do you get these children when really nothing is exciting any more? There are a few good options, starting with letting them pick out something themselves. You can do this by giving them a gift card to a store, or even better a second hand shop so they get more bang for their buck. That way not only will your child be inspired while looking at gear, but they may surprise you with what they pick. Bonus, they learn a little bit about how money works at the same time.
Gift Something That Can't Be Passed Down
Another way to gift a child something special on their birthday or during the holidays is to go the arts and crafts route. After all, it's hard to get hand-me-down art supplies. Splurge on a really nice set of materials and, depending on the age of your child, instructional books to go with it. For example, you can get a whole art set complete with pastels, colored pencils, brush, watercolors and more. Then pair with a book like The Beginner Art Book for Kids: Learn How to Draw, Paint, Sculpt, and More!, by Korri and Daniel Freeman, or The How to Draw Book for Kids: A Simple Step-by-Step Guide to Drawing Cute and Silly Things, by Jacy Corral. Also make sure to stock up on good paper and/or a sketch book. For younger kids a couple craft kits are ideal, and these are often something they can do on their own. And of course, an gently-used art table or easel can help round out the gift.
Not artistic? That's okay, consider gifting sports or outdoor gear instead. Think skates or a skateboard, even a gently-used bike if he or she doesn't have one already. Also think about pairing kid gear with a class. For example, get a basketball and hoop and sign up your kid for a team. Combine swimming lessons with goggles, nose plugs and a fancy new suit. Or put together a bundle of fun music and new shoes and plan for a few months of dance class.
Too Many Toys
Anyone else feel like their kids have too many toys? You're not alone, and sometimes seeing the mess and piles of stuff can make gifting more gear seem daunting. The best way to deal with this is to get rid of toys, sports equipment, books and anything else the kids are not using anymore and sell or donate it. Don't do this with the kids around, I guarantee they will find new love for anything you want to sell, even if they don’t pick it up after the fact. Instead, pick a day when you can go through the mess and take out anything that's in good condition and plan on selling it, preferably through GoodBuy Gear where not only can you take all the stuff directly out of the house and never look at it again, but you can also turn your sales into trade money and get your child something they really want. It’s an eco-friendly way to shop and purge.
Skip Stuff, Go For Experience
Sometimes having an adventure is the greatest gift of all. If your son or daughter have all they want and need, ask grandparents and family to send them a membership to the zoo, local children's museum or any other venue enjoyed by the birthday kid. For the third and fourth child in the house, having some time alone with mom or dad is one of the greatest gifts. Make it special and tailored exactly to their desires, be that a trip to the aquarium with lunch in front of the mermaids; or a day at an amusement park eating all the junk and playing games. If the experience allows for it, let your kid pick out a special item in the gift shop after.
Parties With a No Gift Request
There are various reasons parents don't want gifts brought to a birthday party (see above), and that's everyone's personal choice. However it can be hard to go to a party empty handed. This is where gift cards and donations come in. If your child really wants to gift something but doesn't have a set idea what that is (for example my son just had to give his best friend a specific Batman toy even though it was a "no present" party), let them pick out a gift card.
Or, have your kid make a birthday card with a coupon for "one ice cream party," “one sleepover” or "one play date at the zoo," or anything along that vein. If they really want to bring something tangible, consider a gently-used book or a small art project. You can also bring a present to the parent(s), after all, a nice bouquet or bottle of wine is usually appreciated.