It can hard in this day and age to get things right for your kids. And by getting things right, it’s the presents and the gifts that need to be spot on. We’re living in a very materialistic world, but for some children, it’s not that what they want. Others, however, are all about the expense, and it can be hard to gauge them year on year – tastes and wants change so drastically that it’s almost a minefield. Something that you have bought a week ago can quickly fall out of favor when given, and the art of ‘looking cool’ is all to do with keeping up with the playground trends. So what exactly do we need to be looking for to keep in with the cool kids, and what can we invest in which won’t go out of style anytime soon?
Most children love crafting, and thankfully this is a hobby that never fades; there will always be a need for a craft center of some sort to keep kids occupied. While some parents tend to avoid this choice because of the mess (and oh, the mess!), there are some crafting ideas that don’t require much effort to do. With the lack of effort comes the lack of materials required to get something looking good, and with the lack of materials comes the lack of what looks like the aftermath of a tornado in your home. These include knitting and crochet, aqua beads and colouring-in. If you wish to take it a step further there are many kits available for you to buy that do everything from candle-making to setting a cast of your handprint. It’s up to you how far you want to go with the creativity; just remember that the harder it gets, the more your child may lose interest. They want a quick result of their actions, not something that they have to work towards or wait for ages to see in its full glory. So think quick and simple.
Things like bags, hats, and clothes can easily be personalized for your child. There are many companies online now that let you see their gift ideas before making a decision, so it’s not like you have to come up with something in your head on the spot to place an order. It could be a favorite quote or an in-joke that you have with your child, their name or a profession of love. Personalized items have been the rage since the early 90s, and they don’t show any sign of slowing down soon – remember the necklace that Carrie Bradshaw famously wore? That’s still up there and selling fast with your name on it, and it would make a great grown-up style addition to any little girl’s jewelry collection. Personalizing caps, pens, notepads and other stationery is also a great way to put your child’s stamp over most of the stuff that they own. Speaking of stamps, a personalized stamp can be the key to a great gift; it sort of inter-relates with crafts, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a kid that doesn’t like pushing down on something to make their mark.
Whether this is an investment for the future or something that they’ll take a great joy in reading now, books have always had an appeal to those with a curious and active imagination. There is something that a book provides that television and film just can’t compete with; the ability to see things your own with your own personal interpretation. Depending on how old your child is, you may want to pick something that you can read with them at bedtime, or help them to get through as they get a bit older. Picking a storybook without pictures can seem like a dull idea to them, but if they’re getting to the standard of reading where it doesn’t really matter if you haven’t got something to help aid your thoughts,
There’s a lot of things that money can buy, but the one thing it can’t is an experience. However, it can definitely aid you towards getting there. Taking a trip out can be one of the best birthdays presents ever, as it is something that you can’t toss out when you’re bored of it or have outgrown it, or can ever break. Going somewhere inspiring, or at least inspiring to your children, is so essential in developing their social and personable skills. Taking the time out to dedicate to tripping around and seeing what you want to see is brilliant. The list of places that you can go is endless; theme parks, national parks, museums, sights of interest. If you are able to link it in with something that they are currently studying at school, you may just see a glimmer of something that you haven’t seen before; if they are able to transfer it to be relatable to them and show you what they know, this can be a golden opportunity to develop any learning they have got on a particular subject. It’s sort of like a double-whammy in terms of education and gifting – which may seem like a pretty sad idea, but when you sit down and consider how easy it is to teach a child something when they’re interested, it’s your ideal time to grab this opportunity by the horns.
Along the same vein of using trips as education, you can also give your child the gift of lessons – specifically music lessons. Buying an instrument and then paying for their tutoring is such a great way to expand their skills. It doesn’t have to be something big like a piano – you could invest in a guitar or a ukulele if you want to take it even smaller. Instruments such as clarinets and flutes are easily taken apart and can be condensed down into a smaller box. Let them guide you as to what they want to do; if you’re forcing an instrument on them that they don’t want to learn, it’ll be absolutely useless trying to get them to learn by themselves.