Are you starting to feel overwhelmed with all there is to do around the holidays? Wish there was a simple guide to make buying Christmas gifts simple and easy?
It may surprise you, but there actually is an easy way to decide what to buy your kids for Christmas. (Actually, this even works for adults) And of course, once you’ve decided what to buy, ordering it online or picking it up is the easy part.
I heard about this method of gift giving a year or two ago. And I have to say, it really does make things simple! Plus, it will narrow down the number of gifts to something that anyone can manage, even on a tight budget.
The best part: you won’t end up feeling like you bought your kids a ton of junk that they’ll use for a few days and then forget about.
Use this super simple guide to quickly get done your shopping for Christmas gifts so you can enjoy the holiday season!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.
Easy Guide To Buying Christmas Gifts
Plain and simple, this guide to buying Christmas gifts revolves around four meaningful gifts. Each gift is from a specific category: something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.
Use this easy guide to get each child four meaningful gifts that won’t add to the clutter and will bring value to your child’s life.
No worries, if you want to do more than four, you are absolutely welcome to. It is perfectly okay to do multiples of a particular category, or to expand the categories a bit (we’ll talk more about that at the end of the post).
The Easy Four-Step Guide To Buying Christmas Gifts
Something They Want
First up is a gift that your child wants. While Christmas is not all about the gifts, gift giving is a typical part of most families’ Christmas traditions. And that is perfectly fine. But avoid getting so caught up on buying meaningful gifts that you fail to get your child anything that he/she actually likes or wants.
Yes, sometimes kids’ Christmas wish lists get a little out of hand. And don’t feel like you have to buy everything your child asks for—especially if it’s outside your budget. But try to use this time to give your child gifts that are both meaningful and enjoyable.
Need some inspiration for this gift? Check out these posts for ideas:
This Christmas, my toddler is only two years old. Not quite old enough to tell us what he would like for gifts! But, I was able to find him some great gifts that I think he’ll really love, based on what I know he likes right now.
We got him two gifts for this category: a toy construction site, and an off brand wooden train track set with a pack of Melissa & Doug wooden trains to go with it. We were able to get both the construction site and train tracks on a Black Friday sale, which is how we were able to swing doing two “big” gifts for him this year.
Something They Need
The next gift is something your child needs. This is a really great gift because it can cover anything that your child is in need of. Don’t worry, you can still turn it into a gift that they’ll like and enjoy.
Need new socks or underwear? Try getting ones with a favorite character on them, rather than plain ones. Need new art supplies? Try putting together a fun art box for them.
Don’t be afraid to get creative while you fill your child’s needs.
This year, my son didn’t really need anything specific (don’t worry, this hasn’t always been the case!). But, I knew I wanted to start working with him on some basic things like colors, numbers, and letters. Just some basic learning stuff, without getting too formal or anything.
So for his “need,” we got him a fun, interactive book called Press Here. While we obviously haven’t read it yet, I did flip through a few pages before wrapping it. And let me tell you, it looks super fun! I’m so excited to use this book with him for some super fun learning!
Something To Wear
The third category of gift in this guide to buying Christmas gifts is something that your child can wear. Again, this is a category that has a lot of freedom to it.
Your child might need something to wear, such as more shirts, or new shoes. Or, maybe you just want to get some fun Christmas pajamas for them to wear.
For pajamas, you might include this particular gift in a fun Christmas Eve box. Check out these posts to learn how to put one together:
I had thought about getting these Christmas pajamas for myself and my toddler this year. Ultimately we decided against getting anything to wear this year, since I had recently gotten him some adorable T-shirts from Sweet Peas & Sweeties.
If you’re looking for some cute baby, toddler, or mom shirts, definitely check out Sweet Peas & Sweeties! I love the stuff in her small shop. Pretty sure I would buy it all if I could!
Something To Read
And finally, the fourth gift to this four step gift guide is something to read. Books make such great gifts, and provide plenty of entertainment and learning opportunities. For this gift, we got our toddler the book Bear Stays Up For Christmas.
Of course, the book you choose don’t have to be a Christmas themed book. Feel free to get any book that you think your child will enjoy reading.
Looking for ideas? I have a whole post on some of our favorite toddler aged books.
Guide To Buying ‘Extra’ Christmas Gifts
Maybe you want to keep your Christmas gift giving simple and meaningful, but still want to give more than four gifts. That’s totally okay! There is no right or wrong way to do Christmas gifts.
You can do multiples of the four gifts I talked about above, or keep reading for more inspiration. And of course, if you think of more that aren’t mentioned, definitely let me know in the comments below!
Something To Learn
This is one specific gift that I added on this year to our son’s gifts. Choosing a gift that helps your child learn something new is both fun and constructive.
For this gift, we picked the book Mix It Up to give our toddler. In this book, kids learn about all about colors in an incredibly entertaining and interactive book. I flipped through it a bit before wrapping it up, and it looks awesome! I seriously can’t wait to go through it with Elijah.
Something To Make
Another constructive and meaningful gift you could give is something to make. There’s a lot of freedom with this gift category, as gifts could range from simple blocks to crafts and more.
This is also a great no screen gift to give if you’re looking to cut back on screen time.
Something To Sense
Something to sense is a gift that also has a lot of wiggle room to meet your individual child’s interests. Think sensory items like play-doh, water tables, or sandboxes.
Sensory boxes are a great gift for this category, and are easy to make if you want to do a homemade one. If you’re interested in making your own sensory box, definitely check out my friend Lindsey at Every Day Above Dirt.
She has some amazing ideas for themed sensory boxes! (P.S. She also has this awesome Learning Through Play guide that would make an amazing “something to learn” gift!)
Something To Taste
Who doesn’t love a yummy edible gift?! I know when we pick out Christmas gifts, we often don’t think to get something that could be eaten—except candy canes, maybe!
Don’t feel like this gift needs to be candy or junk either (although that’s fine too if you want to do that). Small snack packs or special treats can be great Christmas gifts for little ones. They also make great gifts to include in Christmas Eve boxes.
Something To Hear
Another great sensory specific gift, “something to hear” could be a musical instrument. Or maybe a fun, kid friendly CD or playlist on your favorite streaming device.
You might also think about getting an audio book from Audible. Audio books can make great gifts to be used during quiet times or during a long car ride—perfect for traveling to and from family during the holiday season.
Something To Watch
Last but not least, another extra gift you might add in is “something to watch.” I know, I know, screens are evil (or so they tell us).
Look, I’ll be totally honest. I let my kid watch TV sometimes. We try to keep it to a reasonable amount. But sometimes you just need a few minutes to yourself, and if a 20 minute show will accomplish that, then so be it.
Don’t beat yourself up if you do screen time—you’re still an awesome mom, screen or no screen! I really think a lot of motherhood is learning to find the balance.
All that to say, don’t feel guilty if you want to gift your child a new movie or show to watch! I definitely am. (Because the Polar Express is a classic Christmas movie and my kid is obsessed with trains. #notsorry)
What would you add?
Now I want to hear from you! How do you decide what to get your kids for Christmas? Is there any “category” that you would add to this guide? Let me know in the comments below, or shoot me an email!
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