Last Minute Favorite Kid Gifts

I’m totally copying Amy Karol with this post. It’s one of those things I should have posted in November, but can’t be organized enough to do so. Hopefully most of you are finished shopping, but if you aren’t, maybe you’ll find some good ideas herein.

interlocking-blocksInterlocking Blocks

We call them Lego Blocks at our house. I bought 3 sets 6 years ago, and they are still the number one toy in this house. I would buy them again in a heartbeat.

Nova Natural Interlocking Blocks – $35.00

91FlNKhyiQL._SL1500_Spot It

My mom introduced this game to us, and my kids really love it. There are a few different varieties out there. It’s simple and fun for all ages, and doesn’t drive me nuts.

Spot It on Amazon $11.29

il_570xN.195122618Dress Ups

This is a no brainer, right? But I think it’s still worth pointing out. In the craziness of the holiday season, it’s easy to forget that sometimes the simplest presents can be the best. All my kids still love dressing up as knights, pirates, princes and princesses, ninjas, and super heroes. These are pretty easy gifts to make if you’re handy with the sewing machine, or shop places like etsy for cool stuff.

il_570xN.523630668_4gknJump Rope

Have you tried jumping rope lately? Holy smokes. My kids can jump endlessly, just like I remember doing when my, er, bottom was less ample.

Hand dyed jumprope by Jupiter’s Child $20.00

91RzO1kUY7L._SL1500_Settlers of Catan

I know I’m kind of a broken record with this game, but it remains a huge family fave. The kids use the pieces in other inventive games, and it’s just all around rad.

The Settlers of Catan on Amazon for $37.80

91ezVnv6DDL._SL1500_Littlest Pet Shop

I’m pretty surprised at the longevity of this item; these little animals have reigned supreme for a couple of years over here. Three of my kids asked for more for Christmas, and the other one will actually join in their play (which often includes the dollhouse, the interlocking blocks up there, and several matchbox cars).

Littlest Pet Shop Starter Pack on Amazon for $35.00 (You can find different sets for more or less, and I’ve seen these in local toy shops, too).

Belt Baldrick-250x250Wooden Swords

My kids loooove playing pirates and knights with wooden swords. Over the years my husband has made some, and we’ve bought some from places like Amazon and etsy. This year my boys pointed me to the Rubberband Guns site. Now, my kids love rubberband guns, but I can’t stand the elastics everywhere. So when they showed me the swords and axes section, I decided to give them a try. Their prices are amazing, but I have no idea on the quality. We’ll have to report after um, Santa ah, makes up his mind on what to bring.

Some others we’ve tried:

Wooden Roman Gladius Gladiator Sword – these were only $11 last year. The point was too sharp, so we sanded them down, but they’re still going strong.

Knight Sword from Nova Natural. The price is good at $12.00 and ours lasted for quite some time. We still have the sword sheaths and can definitely recommend those.

The Pirate Sword from Nova Natural, I believe met an ‘unnatural’ end due to a dog chewing it up. It was solid and well made, and I think cheaper than $19.00 a handful of years ago when we bought ours.

Art supplies, clay, and play-dough are also oft requested, oft played with items over here. Santa can’t go wrong with a set of paints and brushes. What are your most played with, most loved toys and games at your house?

I’ve used some Amazon links in here, but this is not a sponsored post — all the things I linked to were because we tried and liked them (or wanted to try in the case of the super affordable wooden swords).


  1. says

    Spot it! is RAD! We reviewed it last year. I have purchased several of them and most kids who come over are forced to play it. Love, love, love it. Now, try OOGA BOOGA…it shows me how deeply slooooow my brain has become.

    • says

      Oooh, looking it up on that website I always shop at that starts with an “A” and ends with “mazon.”

  2. says

    I love lists like this, always gives me ideas! Thanks. I bought Spot it on Heather’s recommendation before, and we love it! Every house should have it :)

    • says

      Right? Now I’m going to have to try Ooga Booga. I trust Heather’s game choices!

  3. Michelle says

    Lego, lego, lego, lego, Playmobil and lego.

    This year my darling husband was stationed in Germany, briefly, on his way to Afghanistan and I made him buy ME a load of European Playmobil sets.

    Other great bargains (aka – toys he still plays with after all these years) include a Melissa and Doug dollhouse. I bought it back when it wasn’t painted, just plain wood, which he says makes it “a boy’s dollhouse. Not a girl’s dollhouse.” Whatevah. It’s the perfect size for Playmobil men!

    And we love the game Pass the Pig. We play this one a lot, and it’s small enough to bring along to restaurants. Same with dominos. *Can I go on a mini-rant? We went to Red Robin (a chain restaurant, like Applebees or Chilis) and they have these tablet-like things on the table with electronic games on them. Not trivia, but annoying games similar to the Nintendo DS I made my child leave in the car. You have to pay for the games, too. And I saw so many families where the children were playing with – or fighting over – those things! I just wanted to say, “Can’t you guys sit and talk and look at each other EVEN IN A RESTAURANT???” Anyway, Son and I were playing dominos and a boy at another table looked over and said “WHAT are they DOING?”, like were were eating in our underwear. Rant over.*

    This year he’s asked for a pogo stick and an extreme Snap Circuits set.

    • says

      Agreed! My older boys kinda grew out of Playmobil, but the youngest has just rediscovered them. Love! They are so, so fun. Our dollhouse is a huge hit too – it’s one from Nova Natural back when I had expendable cash. :o)

      We have a Red Robin, but THANK GOODNESS they don’t have those play screens. Ugh!

      Pogo stick! That’s a fun one… hmm, maybe stilts would be fun for my kids. Pogo stick reminded me of stilts… they’re both pointy? N. adores his snap circuits, I want to get them all!

  4. MIchelle says

    Wool felt mustaches on elastics! I bought a pattern on craftsy last year and DD and I made full sets for her brothers. OMGoodness. Those darn mustaches come out all the time. Older DD is 14, so they have gag gift potential for the teenaged set…plus the Christmas morning photo potential is great.

  5. says

    Dress ups are big at our house, too. So is any kind of car or truck. My kids really like paper airplanes, too, and play with them all the time. The also love Spot It. I’m totally going to look into those wooden swords. My son uses a wooden knife from a Melissa and Doug food cutting set as his “sword” and if it’s lost he resorts to long sticks he’s found outside. It sounds like the real wooden swords would be right up his alley.

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