Worrying what to get kids for Christmas?

This blog post is by Nicola Baird sharing ideas about thrifty, creative and eco-friendly ways to raise children. This post is all about how to buy a book even if you are lying prone in your bed with a broken hip (which luckily I’m not!). For more info about my book Homemade Kids, with lots of ideas about parenting click here.

Worrying about what to get kids for Christmas? Stop, stop right now. There’s nothing to worry about. Books are what you get a child for Christmas (birthdays, name days, achievements, Christenings, confirmations, etc). And one good book is far better than two.

This book is good enough to eat. So’s mine. Picture demonstrated by model bookworms, Lola and Nell.

There are several ways to find the right book:

  • Via Amazon.co.uk – brilliant because Amazon can send it direct to the door, even to friends who live in Solomon Islands or Japan! OK Amazon doesn’t pay enough tax, and are killing book shops but ticks for everything else
  • Via a book shop and choose something the kids’ section staff recommends (or better still the kids in the shop).
  • Choose something made or written by a local writer/cartoonist if it’s on sale at a craft sale, Christmas sale or similar locally.
  • Buy a voucher. £10 is enough for a paperback or a book for a younger child. Recently my girls have been given £15 vouchers which gives them a lot more choice – though the amount makes me swoon. Books ought to be pocket money prices (ie, less than £1).
  • Go to a charity shop and get rummaging – or find a specialised Oxfam book shop (which now has more than 100 branches) – and pick out something you used to love when you were little.
  • Write your own – easy you know, just don’t leave it until the last minute.
  • Buy a book that you don’t mind writing on and then using permanent marker pens and or white sticky labels adapt the story so the stars acquire the name of the child you wish to gift it too. This is especially fun as a gift for a big brother/sister who might be smarting from the arrival of a sibling baby.

I hope this helps. As for me, well I know what I want for Christmas… what the kids are having.

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3 Comments on “Worrying what to get kids for Christmas?”

  1. I agree that books make an excellent gift, but unfortunately some kids do have a bit of an aversion to receiving books as gifts, so I think it’s sometimes worth getting a bit creative to pique their interest in the books. For example, say the book was about a bird, then find a nice feather and place that inside the front cover of the book so that they can imagine it came from the bird in the story. Or another nice idea is to write a personal letter to the child, from the main character in the story, and place that inside the book, like ‘Dear Sarah, I do hope you enjoy reading about my adventures in etc…’

    • homemadekids Says:

      Vanessa, you are so good at going the extra mile. I think I’ve got a bit complacent by not knowing any child who doesn’t like books – but who couldn’t adore your two suggestions of the bird feather or personal letter if it was a gift to them? I look forward to adding these tasks on to my xmas list (honestly!). Thanks. Nicola

      • The problem is, I can come up with the ideas, but I’m not so good at actually implementing them! Still, if my ideas are helpful to other people, then they’re not wasted!

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