Minimalist Christmas Gift Ideas for Kids that Don’t Add Clutter
One evening my husband and I were chatting about the chaos of Christmas. We often find ourselves rushing around to find the right gifts, stressing that we’ve done enough to make the kids happy, and overwhelmed when all the presents are open. (Not to mention all the extra presents from family!).
Just toss us the Lindor chocolate balls while we’re passed out on the couch!
We’ve often felt like we’re just a cog in the Christmas consumerism wheel.
Can you relate?
We decided we needed to re frame how we view Christmas in order to minimize clutter and chaos while still giving our children a wonderful Christmas experience.
Define What Christmas Means to Your Family
When you become a parent, the “Christmas experience torch” gets passed to you:
Will we make an effort to see Santa yearly? (Who even is Santa, anyway?)
Do we eat as much sugar as humanly possible this month?
How many bills are we going to drop on presents each year?
And are we going to, (for heavens sake), put an elf on the shelf!?
We Had to Redefine Christmas for Our Own Family
I decided it was time to take the reindeer by the horns and actually decide what Christmas means to our family.
I no longer just wanted to go along with the chaos of consumerism.
In the past few years, I have realized that Christmas is a way to deeply connect with and witness to my children.
Gift giving can be a part of this, but the deeper truths of love, acceptance, forgiveness and faith are what I hope will shine through our traditions.
What is the True Meaning of Christmas?
As a Christian, I feel Christmastime is a wonderful opportunity to share the message of redemption through Jesus Christ with my children.
Oh, I am sad to say that I have often gotten caught up in the “pressures” of consumerism and not focused enough on this truth! Instead of putting undue pressure around Christmas gifts, I’ve been transitioning to enjoying the full experience of Christmas with my family.
I’ve also spent a lot of time thinking through clutter free Christmas gift ideas for my kids.
What Kind of Toys Add Clutter?
Each person is going to have to answer this for themselves. If lots of toys around doesn’t stress you, that’s great! If its not a problem for you, don’t make it a problem!
However if you are like me and like to keep toys to a minimum and tucked away when not in use, I use the following guidelines to reduce clutter:
-Avoid gifts with multiple pieces (like 100’s or 1000’s), because these tend to be harder to manage
-Try to avoid plastic based toys and buy quality brands and material
-Plan in advance where the new purchases will go (in the art cupboard, on the bookshelf, or in the toy bin, for example)
-Save big purchases (like new bikes, trampolines, etc) for Christmas
Minimalist Gifts For Kids
After reevaluating what Christmas means to our family, we have decided we still love the excitement and joy gift giving brings to our kids.
So, I’d love to share with you some gift ideas here that I love as a somewhat minimalist mom!
I try to focus my gift giving this way: one larger gift, then a few small gifts that are consumable. Experiences also make wonderful gifts!
Larger Group Christmas Gift Ideas for Kids
If you have multiple kids, one way to reduce clutter is to have the main present be a large group gift.
Art Supplies as Christmas Gifts
My number one favorite gift to give my children is art supplies!
To keep down the clutter, I avoid art kits with lots of beads, fringe and moving parts and pieces!
Yes, my daughter tends to love and long for art supplies more than my sons, but they also enjoy them too!
Here are a few lovely art supplies that your kids will enjoy and use up throughout the year:
I love the Faber-Castell brand of art supplies:
My kids have also enjoyed receiving watercolor paint and watercolor paper, scented markers, stickers, colored paper and special crayons.
Audiobooks As Minimalist Christmas Gifts for Kids
My kids have spent many a rainy afternoon curled up on the bed listening to an audiobook while coloring or sewing.
Grab your kids an old fashioned cd player and a few wonderful books on cd. A few of our favorites:
Baking Box: Christmas Gift for Kids
Our family has really started to enjoy baking together this year. So I am trying something new and putting them together a “baking box” as part of their consumable gifts. Some ideas:
Their own kids spatulas
Baking coupons created by mom that they can “cash in” for kitchen time together
The beauty of this gift is that everything is either consumed or kept in the kitchen, and you are adding built in quality time into this gift!
Rocket Ships For Boys
This section is my boy’s idea! They LOVE rockets and would love to recommend this one for your kids.
You could also get a rocket book to go along with the project. My kids love Armstrong: the Adventurous Journey of a Mouse to the Moon
When you are done with the experiment, you can recycle/throw away the materials.
Fun Chocolates as Minimalist Christmas Gifts
I buy these British chocolates for each of my nieces and nephews for their birthdays and they LOVE them. This is a great consumable Christmas gift that is unique for US kids and fun!
You could also buy other quality chocolate and include it in your kids gifts as a fun surprise or stocking stuffer.
Stationary Kit and Stamps as Minimalist Gifts
Minimalist Christmas Gift Ideas for Kids: Cardboard Play Houses
There are an array of cardboard play houses available on Amazon! As gifts, these houses provide hours of fun and creativity and eventually get recycled.
Christmas Gifts for Kids: Books
Embrace the beautiful tradition of reading out loud to your kids. We include a book or two every year for our kiddos. They receive countless hours of attention but take up very little space and are easy to organize!
To maximize space on shelves, go through your bookshelves periodically and get rid of any that aren’t well loved, or going to be passed on to future generations.
Christmas Cash: Easy and Fun for Kids
Christmas cash is an exciting, easy gift for kids. We have given our kids a little cash in years past, and they love it! You can even wrap up the money and set it under the tree!
This is a great opportunity to teach kids responsibility as well, as they have to budget and decide for themselves where to spend their money!
Remember the True Meaning of Christmas
Christmas is such a magical times for kids.
Remember that the sweetest, small things can make the heart of a child happy. And in spite of all the shiny material distractions, quality time with loving parents is what every kid really needs.