Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Easter Basket Ideas

Most parents fill their children's Easter baskets with candy, but not in this house. Not because I'm a health freak, but because our oldest has a nut allergy. We've learned that almost all candy (not just Easter candy) is made in a factory that also processes nuts. Jelly beans are typically okay, but one can only handle so many jelly beans--we still had a bag from last Easter until the hubs discovered them in the back of the cupboard on New Year's.

So you're saying you don't fill the baskets with mountains of candy, so what do you fill it with??? Here are a few ideas that we have done in the past (this year's is still being worked on):

0-18 Months Old:

  • Baby food
  • Board books
  • Finger foods (yogurt melts, Puffs, crackers)
  • Onesies
  • Socks
  • Sippy Cup
  • Light up toy(s)
  • CD with kids music or lullabyes
  • Cabbage Patch Cuties
  • Stuff animals

18 month old - 3 year old:
  • Books
  • Blanket
  • Duplos
  • Little People
  • Hex Bugs (3+ years)
  • Play Doh (I am actually not a huge fan of Play-Doh because it crumbles and smears all too easily into the carpet. I prefer Crayola model magic above all else but it's pricier)
  • Play-Doh accessories
  • Fisher Price Wheelies
  • Dress up clothes (3+ years)
  • Purses/bags/backpacks: toddlers love to pack things away in bags. Don't ask me why, but the bin of bags are the most played with toys in our entire house
  • Bath toys: squirters, bath crayons, paints, etc.

4+ years:
  • Legos
  • Camelbak water bottle
  • Imaginext figurines or playsets
  • Easy reader books
  • A new bike (yes expensive, but it's also the time of year when parents realize that junior('s) have outgrown last year's bike....just sayin')
  • Stickers
  • Melissa and Doug art activities:
  • Wii Sports Resort (our 5 1/2 LOVES these games and I love that he's not sitting around blankly staring at a screen)
  • Sport equipment (for the younger crowd, there's always Little Tikes first sports equipment packages, but by the time they're 4 years old, most kids have outgrown that and in need of the next step of sport equipment. Baseball glove/bat/ball, basketball, etc.)
  • Camping items
  • Comic books
  • Build Your Own kits (check out Lowe's or Wal-Mart for decent selections such as bird houses, cars, trains, and more)
For all ages:
  • Art supplies
  • Fruit (apples, oranges, and the take along applesauce packets are favorites here)
  • Starburst jelly beans: Best. Jelly beans. Ever.
  • DVD (I highly recommend any of the Leap Frog dvd's)
  • Outside toys/activities: sidewalk chalk, a new sprinkler, sand toys, beach ball/toys
  • Clothes/shoes (when I was little, it was a tradition that my grandma got all of the grandkids a basket full of new summer clothes to wear--so practical, useful, and appreciated by parents)
  • Fish: yes, a fish. Skip a bunny or baby chic (the Animal Rescue League will appreciate it) and opt for a fish.
Feel free to skip the Easter grass in the baskets........