Saturday, December 1, 2007

More than a dozen Cool Stocking Stuffers

Because it is that time of year. I've been known to forget this stuff until the last minute, and then Santa goes convenience store shopping. Oy!

The rules:

1) No junk that will become future clutter

2) Must cost under $15; under $10 is even better

3) Must fit in a stocking

4) Nothing made in China (this made it extra tough and ruled out Chelona puzzles and board books)

And, I would love to hear your ideas, so send us comments. Here goes.

1. For baby, I've never felt the need to go overboard. A rattle and a soft stuffed animal or a clutching toy fill up space nicely and keep baby happy.

Kathe Kruse Gnome Teething Doll ($13.95)


Trix grasping toy ($7.00). I have had one in my diaper bag for years.
Clutching car ($14.19)


2. Bajo Vehicles ($6.99 and up) - I love the simplicity of these Polish cars. So do babies and toddlers. The police car is $8.99 at Oompa.


3. Holztiger figures - I've raved about these before. Arielle will be getting 3 pigs and a wolf in her stocking. The best selection is available at Rosie Hippo.


4. Haba jewelry - No lead! Safe and cute. Haba jewelry will make your little girl feel special. Arielle received this Tulipa bracelet ($4.75) last year.


5. Or, give her a set of Haba beads ($10.49) and let her make her own necklace.



6. Magic Wand ($5.90) - this one is made in the USA.


7. Dollhouse dolls like this Christmas Fairy are on sale for $7.95 at WillowTreeToys.com


A Princess, Prince, Witch and other dolls are available for the same price. Made in Thailand.

8. Cookie cutters ($1.00 and up)

The real gift, of course, is the time you spend baking cookies together. You could add some fun sprinkles (there is a very nice selection at Fancy Flours or at some craft stores) and go all out.

9. Instead of real treats, how about play sweets for the toy kitchen?

Felt ice cream cone ($7.00)



10. Art supplies like Beeswax Crayons ($11.99) are always good. I love that these are very safe, bright, and write smoothly.




11. On the same train of thought: Modeling Beeswax. My older children played with this from age eight and on. It has to be warmed up between your hands to be pliable, but it smells delicious. A very different experience from Play-Do.

Or, try colored pencils (I really like LYRA pencils $7.95), stickers, small sketch books, scissors (for older kids), glue sticks....

12. Haba mini games (about $10.00). Haba makes many games in take-along tins. Everything from bingo and checkers to small versions of their most popular full-sized games.

Mini Orchard($9.99)



13. Older girls might enjoy a fairy kit ($13.95-$15.95) from Blueberry Forest.




14. A special Christmas Ornament. The Wooden Wagon has a large selection of wooden ornaments and other holiday decorations from Germany, like this angel singing under a tree ($10.50)


You could make this a tradition and add an ornament every year. When your child is grown-up, he'll have a nice collection for his own tree.

Ho Ho Ho!

9 comments:

Every day life said...

For my 13 month old son. California Baby lotion(8.50), shampoo(8.50), and suntan lotion($15), baja car, sigg water bottle(14.36 on sale at babycenter.com), bib(6.00), Good Clean Fun Biodegradable Disposable Place Mats (8.96 on babycenter.com).

A few other ideas: tadoodles by Crayola, bath squirt toy, crackers, ball (oball), sippy cup,chelona puzzles from oompa for 7.99, toothbrush, or small books.

Sara said...

Great ideas!
I love the Chelona puzzles, and wanted to include them. But they are printed in China, so they didn't qualify for my list.
I had to cut the list shorter than I wanted because it was taking so much time. But, I hope I got something for everyone in the 0-12yo age group.

Jada2929 said...

Super list of ideas! I would add

Playsilks

Wood Baby or Kids Spoons
http://www.bellalunatoys.com/lunchtime/items/babytoddlerspoons.htm

Maple Landmark Speller
http://www.hazelnutkids.com/cgi-bin/category.cgi?item=ML73020&type=store

Felted Ball or a Felted Ball Kit

Miniature Music box but I'm not sure if this is MIC?
http://www.forsmallhands.com/store/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=79_98_423
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=7934268

Marina said...

Sara,
are you sure about Chelona puzzles? We have them, as well as memory games, and they all are made in Greece

Sara said...

Some Chelona products are made in Greece and some in China. The owner of Chelona has actually moved to China to oversee production to ensure a quality product (both in terms of aesthetics & safety). The factory in China is ICTI certified.

Another Made In China toy I would have liked to include are Anamalz which are designed in Australia and made in China in an Eco- and Ethically-Certified Factory.

mama k said...

I actually just got that Bajo car from Baby Center for DS's stocking! (They run great free shipping deals and sales.)

Other than that, DS (16mo) is getting a little knit monkey I bought at a fair trade fair, an orange in the toe (family tradition), some homemade playdough, a Plan Toys "Moving Lion" and maybe some snacks of some sort.

Lisa (Aly & Timmy's mom) said...

My two cents. ;)

Slinky! I found an original metal Slinky, ages 6+, Made in the USA, at Pottery Barn Kids for $9. I later found another original Slinky, also metal, Made in the US for $5 at a local seasonal shop in the mall.

In the dollar rack at Michael's I found several coloring books that were printed in the US.

Drea said...

what fun natural products! :-) thanks for the 411

Anonymous said...

I don't have anything against things made in China, but just wanted to mention that about half of the Haba-brand toys are made in China, including the cute wood jewelry/bracelets and the mini-orchard game. "Most" of the wood baby toys are still made in Germany, but not the jewelry or some of the bigger building block sets, and all of their fabric-products such as stuffed toys and mobiles, etc, are made in China.