Thursday, December 10, 2015

Gifting for Growing Boys

With Christmas fast approaching, I'm checking things off my list like crazy. It probably comes as no surprise that I'm doing a lot of my shopping online this year. Yea, I'm just not brave enough to drag four boys to every store looking for the perfect gift. It's been much easier, though very time consuming, to use Amazon and,among others. I have a master list of all that I had in mind to get my boys and, surprisingly, I've finished theirs completely! I'm now on to family and exchange gifts. I can see the end and Christmas is still two weeks away! Mom win!!

Anyway, I thought it might be fun to do a little roundup of things my boys love and will be receiving as gifts this year, from us and family members (yea, I still add things to their lists lol), a little gift guide of sorts. We tend not to do a lot of toys. Anyone with kids knows how eager everyone else is to get them things like that so, we steer more toward things they can use that won't just clutter our home and also last longer than a week or two. I feel like we've always done pretty well at picking out some things they'll really enjoy and this year, I'm so excited to see them tear into their gifts on Christmas morning!

My boys are definitely in check with their piers about the whole Ninja Turtle movement. That being said, they've been asking for a turtle shell since they saw them in our local Walmart months ago. Thankfully, I've already got them bought and stored in one of our basement bedrooms with the other gifts (shhh, don't tell the boys!) so I won't have to worry about finding three as things start to disappear off the shelves in the coming weeks. These will be a major hit I know.

Something else my older boys have taken a major interest in is Legos. I love that they have Juniors building sets for ages 4 to 7 years and sets geared toward older children as well. We added one of each to our shopping list and they'll work great with the lego blocks and mats they'll be receiving from family.

LEGO Juniors Turtle Lair

LEGO City Great Vehicles Race Car Building Set

Something more practical I purchased for our boys is a good pair of shoes and some new clothing items. Everyone knows how quickly kids grow, especially their feet, so I always try to include some new (or thrifted) items in their gifts for Birthdays or Christmas. To be honest, my boys love clothes, especially if they have a cool design, are their favorite color or boast super heros. And shoes? If they're new (or new to them) then they always make them go faster than any other pair and that's an obvious win. Seriously, what isn't a competition among boys??

Something else my boys have been asking for the past few months is a water bottle of their own. We often take trips to the part during the summer months to walk with friends and, since we usually go early, we take breakfast and eat after our workout. We always bring tossable water bottles but they've always wanted one of their own to fill and take with us. So, this year, I found some great stainless steel bottles on Amazon. They come in lots of colors which is great if you have more than one kiddo. I ended up ordering the same size bottle in blue, red and purple. (For their favorite Ninja Turtle, of course!)

Klean Kanteen Kid's Sky Diver Stainless Steel Storage with 3.0 Sport Cap, 12-Ounce

I'm one of those moms that loves getting their kids new Christmas jammies every year. Last year I found a great deal on some from Children's Place during the holiday sales but, this year I went for something a little different. I found the perfect jammie sets from Burts Bees Baby and loved them. But, instead of matching all of them, I decided to coordinate. Then, after the holidays, my older boys can use theirs as long johns when they go on cold weather excursions with their daddy. And they come with a super cute and festive matching stocking that will be great to use again every year! I bought ours at a steal from instead of paying full price, which I loved.

Now, obviously, my younger boys can't really get into all that the older ones enjoy. So, instead of a lego set, we got Blake (our two and a half year old) a stuffed Donatello (his favorite!). He loves cuddling his teddy bear (which he's slept with every night since moving to his toddler bed) but, it's starting to get a little worn. So, I thought we'd try to replace it with this great stuffed friend and, maybe he'll be brave enough to go to sleep on his own. We'll see how it works!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Donatello Pillowbuddy

Also, I love including books in everything we get the boys because they love reading so much and it's just super important. This year, I found this cute truck book on Amazon for a great price so that will be under the tree for Mister Blake as well. 

For our newest addition, I found some super cute gifts that I am so excited about! First up are these adorable swaddle blankets, because, let's face it, you can never have too many blankets! They have great modern designs and will be perfect to grow with him.

I also found some simply adorable bandanna bibs that will be perfect as he gets older and starts cutting those teeth. I love the designs of this little set though amazon had many cute patterns to choose from. 

And, lastly on my little guys list were these super adorable moccasins! You can purchase these from so many places nowadays but I found a great deal on some at I ended up getting a taupe pair in 0-6 months and a coffee bean pair in 6-12 months. I figure, they're less likely to get scuffed up when baby is smaller and the darker color will be good for when he starts to walk. I just love how sweet they are!

Stocking Stuffers were last on my list for our boys and I finally finished that up last night! We don't do the candy in the stockings thing. We just aren't a big candy family. Now, that's not to say we don't eat it. Because we do. We love chocolate, a lot. But, we typically get enough of that from family around the holidays that I don't' even worry about buying any. I like to get things that will last more than a few seconds and they can enjoy more than once. This year, I found some VeggiTales DVDs on clearance so I purchased one each for our older boys for their stocking. I love how they are Bible oriented but still highly entertaining, even for adults. Plus, they usually play off of other popular stories so that's even cuter.

Rack, Shack, and Benny (reissue) VeggieTales DVD  -

Minnesota Cuke and the Search for Noah's Umbrella--DVD  -

Pistachio: The Little Boy That Woodn't, VeggieTales DVD   -

For the older boys, I also got them each a set of TMNT tableware. They love choosing what spoon/fork they're going to use at each meal and what we have we've had for years so, I thought a new set might be fun. I found these at Walmart for super cheap and they look pretty sturdy.

Gerber Graduates Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Fork & Spoon Utensil Set, BPA-Free

Lastly, while looking for some kind of ocean animal, I came across these! My boys are big into deer hunting (All of them!!) so, I know they'll love these mini bucks. Major win here!

White-tailed Buck Figurine by Schleich - 14709

For our littlest guy, I decided on some super cute camo sunglasses. Because, if he's anything like his older brothers, he's going to have to wear a pair anytime we leave the house. Another walmart find (perks..or downsides? to living in a town too small for target lol), I know they'll get lots of use.

Child of Mine by Carter's Newborn Baby Boy Sunglasses

Add in this classic Christmas tale and his little stocking will be stuffed!

Charlie Brown Christmas 50th Anniversary, A: Deluxe Edition

Since we rarely buy things other than necessities throughout the year (besides birthdays), I love to pick out gifts for our boys at Christmastime. I don't spend a ton of money but I get them things I know they want and will love. We try not to keep an excess of toys and such around so that they learn to take care of what they have and it has worked out really well for us so far. Though I love the whole experience of Christmas shopping and gift giving, I also want my boys to understand the real reason we celebrate Christmas. It's like the song JD and I sing together at our church during this season. It's called It's About the Cross and it talks about how it's not all about the presents, the feeling of the season, the manger or the wise men. It's about the cross and the fact that my Savior came to die for my sins. It's about the empty tomb and that He has risen again to give us real life. An everlasting life. It's such an overwhelming feeling of love and joy and adoration and I want my boys to experience all of that. The real reason for the season. God bless you all this Christmas. And, please, no matter your shopping budget this year, take advantage of the free gift that Jesus has given to you. His perfect love and unmatched grace that he extends to each and every one of us. Let that be the greatest gift you receive. Merry Christmas!!

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