4 Ideas for Thrifty and Memorable Birthday Gifts
Because birthday gifts for kids need not be expensive.
Guest blog by Ruth Mendez
Today’s children are very different. Even though they’re impossibly adorable, I think they’re getting used to having what they want most of the time. Meanwhile, yesterday’s youth know for a fact that penny-pinching is a virtue and friendships are measured by the memories you make with each other.
I had this thought after my kid sat up next to me while I was shopping online. She asked me to buy a royal castle LEGO play set as a gift for her friend’s birthday, which will cost me about $50, before shipping.
While money is not that big of an issue, I didn’t like the fact that my child would be willing to spend so much for a friend’s birthday present. Or maybe my kid just doesn’t realize what’s more important yet.
As parents, it’s our responsibility to teach our kids about money and things it can never buy. I remember making a wire tiara for my best friend’s 7th birthday. She still has it displayed on her office desk, even though it’s not the same color as it used to. I told this story to my kid and she had to pause for some time before I went on and helped her find the right gift for her friend.
This is why I came up with amazing gift ideas kids will surely love that won’t hurt your budget:
Kids love to draw. They are Picassos and Michaelangelos in small proportions. This may be because drawing is one of the first activities where they get a sense of fulfilment and accomplishment, and a sense of being able to create something. Provide them with plenty of room to explore their artistic capabilities. Give little kids some crayons, watercolors, and colored pencils to help them visualize their dreams. Giving chalk, markers, and clay dough to older kids are also amazing gift ideas. Prevent them from drawing on walls by giving them a sketchbook as well.
Of course, what you give, you will receive. Having your kids gift do-it-yourself stuff to close friends is a unique way to express their love to their friends Kids can also learn to appreciate the underlying sentimental value with DIY gift ideas made especially for them. This will also develop their admiration for hard work and value for sweet thoughts. There are a lot of DIY gift ideas: from picture frames, bookmarks, to personalised key chains, and paper maches. These are great gift ideas kids can give to their friends. You can check this kids craft ideas for DIY gift items.
While giving kids art materials can be expensive (depending on the brand), it’s good to start teaching them to make crafts for themselves. This is an exercise in showing them the value of effort and appreciation.
Slide Show Presentations
Since today’s children are much more tech-savvy than most of us (heck, my 8 year-old even knows how to change skins on my Android phone!), it’s not too farfetched for them to create slide show presentations for their friends. It’s better to be shown on parties where it can be shared with everyone. This can be an awesome surprise for their friend, especially when they’re extra close with each other. Imagine this presentation playing in front of everyone, then an awkward photo pops up, or a special moment that only your kid and her friend know about… Isn’t that sweet? They can also include birthday greetings from other friends who won’t make it in the party to make it super fun!
Homemade Edible Goodies
If your kid is feeling extra motivated to create something for their friend’s birthday, help them to make edible goodies like cupcakes, cookies, and other pastry treats. Also, since this will be a gift, make sure to put it in an attractive packaging.
It doesn’t really matter whether your kid has an expensive gift for their friend’s birthday or not. An old saying goes: it’s the thought that counts. And count it does! I didn’t agree to buy the LEGO set my kid wanted for her friend. Instead, we spent time searching for a gift her friend will like, and added her personal touch by making it in our home. I don’t know if my judgment is clouded, but I think my child gave the most unique gift among everyone on that party. Her friend loved the bracelet so much she wore it right away.
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com
About The Author
Ruth Mendez is a working mom with lovely twins. She and her family enjoy yoga during weekends, aside from going to the movies and eating ice cream at home. Ruth works as a Community Manager for Afterschool.ae, the leading after school activity planning platform for kids and moms in Dubai.