Stocking Stuffer Ideas

BY Tracy Cassels

Sick of the last minute, grab-what-you-can stocking stuffers?  The things the kids take one look at and toss to the side because they really aren’t going to use it?  The main goal of stocking stuffers is to find things that your kids (or partner) will like and actually use.  Socks are well and good (they were a staple of my mom) but let’s be honest – who gets excited by socks?  Here some tips and ideas for good stocking stuffers...

  1. Include a snack, especially if you put the stocking in their room.  A snack means they can wake up, be totally entertained, and let you get a bit more sleep before the crazy really begins.  Good snacks are the ones that won’t go bad, make too much of a mess, or make them a little too wired before opening gifts.

  2. Include a game they can play.  My mom used to give us the cheap little maze toys which occupied us for ages as we always wanted to solve it before waking our parents and going downstairs to open presents.  However, we’ve moved beyond those these days and now you have all sorts of choices from little electronic games to puzzles.  Also, if you have more than one child and they play well together, card games are small, easy, and fun.

  3. Include something small that they really want.  Making sure there’s a little something that will be extra special is one way to just start that day off as an extra special or exciting day.  What this will be, however, is entirely dependent on what your kid likes and may range from a small toy to earphones.  One option is to consider getting a DVD.  Usually people consider DVDs gifts, but with the prices dropping (thank Blu Rays for that), you can often pick up ones your kids would like for pretty darn cheap.  Whether it’s a Thomas the Tank Engine, My Little Pony, Transformers, or the Walking Dead, you can almost always guarantee getting your child a movie they’ll enjoy – likely that day.

  4. Include something they need.  I joked about socks earlier but kids often need certain things and this is one way to kill two birds with one stone: Get them what they need and make them just a bit more excited by it because it came at Christmas.  If your child needs a USB key, a calculator, or batteries for the various toys they’ll get as gifts, this is one spot to throw them in while filling space.  If it’s your partner you’re doing a stocking for, this may be the place to fill it with the random things they need like razors, batteries, nail clippers, and so on – all those things you always find you’re short of during the year.

  5. Include something arty.  All kids should get the opportunity to be artists sometimes and stocking stuffers are a great way to add to their art collection.  Markets and crayons fit well and are easy to find and stickers can be used on anything – including the thank you cards your kids will hopefully be writing to those who gave them gifts (I’ll write more on this after Christmas).

  6. Include something sporty.  They may not be able to use it right away, but something that keeps your kids moving should always be a part of every Christmas.  It may be as simple as the small bouncy balls that send them running around the house in glee or part of an activity they enjoy, like golf balls or a hockey puck or baseball.

At the end of the day remember that the stocking shouldn’t break the bank.  There are lots of ways to create an entire stocking that kids will love for the cost of one gift.  The main idea is to use things that are both fun and useful.


By Michelle Janzso

November 03, 2014

Staples Canada