Enjoy the experiences of Christmas without acquiring more clutter with these 15 non-stuff gifts for kids!Disclaimer: Some of the following links are affiliate links. I make a small commission from some of the links on this site. You can read my full disclosure here.
15 Non-Stuff Gifts for Kids
One of the things that this pandemic has taught me is valuing experiences and events over stuff. I’ve been reading a lot about the environmental impact of fast fashion and our consumerism-driven culture. It has made me re-evaluate a LOT in my own life and has made me really examine my purchasing choices.
I saw something on Facebook that basically said, “I don’t remember what I got for Christmas when I was 7 or 10, but I remember being by the fire, baking cookies, watching Christmas movies, etc.” (the post was a lot more elegant)
But thinking about it, it’s really true.
With the current pandemic, some of these ideas might not be possible depending on your circumstances, but many of these ideas can be done at home and be low cost!
1. Day Trip
Take a trip to a nearby city, visit new restaurants, or experience local events that may be outside of your city.
Curiosity Stream is like an educational Netflix, with tons of engaging shows and documentaries that range from animals to history to travel. It’s only $20 for the year!
KiwiCo is a great STEAM-themed subscription box for all ages from 0-18! They have several different kits available. It starts at $17/mo, and the kits can be chosen based on different interests, from geography to art.
It can be online (Outschool is a great place to find) or in-person (hopefully soon), but the internet allows classes to go beyond the traditional instruments and sports. Here are a few ideas to get started:
- Forensic Science
- Video Game Design
- Cupcake Design
If you have a kid really interested in art, a nice art supply kit can be a practical gift option.
If your late elementary/middle school kids love puzzles, they’re going to love this presidents-themed escape room you can set up at home.
7. Dinner at a favorite restaurant
If you rarely go to a pricier restaurant, treat yourselves for a pre or post-Christmas dinner!
Rent an AirBnb locally or in a new city for some time away! You’re able to social distance, while still enjoying a new environment. (If you’re new to AirBnb, use this link for up to $65 off your first booking.)
9. Fun local events or activities
If covid allows, places like Skyzone, bowling, skydiving, rock climbing, the zoo, one-time local events, winter festivals, or more can be a fun unique treat.
10. Game nights or movie nights
From themed foods for a movie night (grab some Turkish delight for a Narnia movie night!) to DIY Minute to Win It, an extravagant movie or game night can be a great indoor activity.
Here are some fun foodie ideas to get you started:
11. Outdoor camping
If it’s not too cold, try outdoor camping for a night or two. You can also rent an RV.
Great for ages 6-14, this cooking-themed subscription service is a lot of fun and gets kids involved in the kitchen.
13. Sports gear
If they’re in need of new ballet leos or new workout shoes, sports gear can be a great option.
14. Craft, Science, or Activity Kit
Craft, science, and activity kits can take days or weeks to finish, making them a long-term project during the winter months. Some ideas are:
- Garden kits
- Science projects
- Building kits
- Painting kits
For my sister’s birthday, I got her a painting craft kit from a local small business that she can paint and later store something in. (it’s a little 3D cupcake!)
Games can be replayed over and over again! A new favorite or ours has been Sushi Go, since it has about 8 different game variations for fresh gameplay each time.