Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas Lists - Ages Newborn to 6 years

Did you hear that?  It was me.  Sighing.  A huge weight lifted off my shoulders as I just submitted a massive order with Amazon and thus wiped out at least 75 percent of my Christmas shopping.

I'm trying to keep the reason for the season and all that.  Believe me.  We are.  We're doing a lot of special gift giving to those who really need it because this year, in particular, we feel especially blessed.

But I'm also being practical.  With a baby due any day now I'm not about to be bothered with fighting the holiday crowds.  Or having to get dressed.  Or get off the couch.

I'm so in love with Amazon with its endless selection, great prices and FREE shipping.  You just can't beat it.

We try to keep gift-giving for the kids very simple and focus on quality rather than quantity.  (Which is another reason I love Amazon -- great user reviews!)  It can be hard, I admit, not to get wrapped up in the commercialism of it all.  But as soon as my mind starts to think about the clutter that will ultimately gather, I'm instantly brought back down to my simplistic ways.

Here's a sneak peak at some of the kids' Christmas gifts.  Shhhh....don't tell.

William - 6 years

A set of golf clubs -- He took to golfing this summer with Brian even though he had no real clubs of his own.  I didn't go too crazy on price, he is only six after all, but I got a decent set that will last him for a few years at least.  He hasn't even thought to ask for these so this will be a real treat when he opens them!

A maze game and a giant puzzle -- William has never been a big toy kid.  He likes the thrill of a new toy for about a total of ten minutes.  But I see him constantly returning to games and puzzles again and again.  He needs things to stimulate his brain and I hope these deliver!

Lucy - 3 1/2 years

Cinderella dress-up gown -- This is totally Lucy.  She's all about dress-up and dramatic play.  She currently only has generic dress-up gowns and they're getting a little tattered.  I know she'll love this one.

Stringing Bead Set -- I'm going out on a limb here.  I may regret this one with all its small pieces.  But I was looking for an activity that we could do together while William is in school.  Piggy-backing on the dress-up theme, I think she'll enjoy making necklaces and spelling out her name.

T-ball Set -- I never feel guilty about spending money on outdoor toys.  They rarely go to waste in our house.  Our old t-ball set was cheap and it broke last spring.  So this is me, giving Lucy a chance to love t-ball.

Katherine - 1 year

Cash Register -- We've never had one of these and her little fingers are really into anything that has to do with putting things in slots or holes.  The kids love the vintage one at my mom's house!  This was the closest thing I could find.

Stack & Sort Board -- Same idea as above.  We'll have a lot of time at home this winter and she's so good about sitting on the floor and working through these types of toys.  I love that this is a wooden set.

New Baby

Jellycat Monkey -- I loathe stuffed animals.  But there's just something about Jellycat that makes my kids (and me!) latch on.  They are so soft and such great quality.  They wash up great time after time.  Lucy never sleeps a night without her bunny and Katherine is never in her crib without her elephant.  I particularly love introducing these in the early months because it quickly becomes a cue that it's time for bed.

In addition to all these items we usually get the kids about three books each.  Like outdoor toys, I never feel guilty about buying books.  But I do like to check the used bookstore before I commit to buying new on Amazon.  Just a few titles I'm looking at right now are Scaredy Squirrel, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Animalia, and various board books.

As for their stockings, we usually stuff those with a fun toothbrush, a tree ornament and a package of their favorite candy.

How about you?  Do you keep things simple or do you go all out?  What types of things are on your kids' lists?

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