20 Non-Toy Christmas Gifts for Kids, Plus Other Really Good Kid Gift Ideas!

Non-Toy Gifts for Kids

Raise your hand if you can’t stand the thought of giving your kids more toys for Christmas.

Yeah, my house is already overflowing with toys.

So I put together a NON-TOY gift guide! It was one of the gift guides you guys requested the very most, so I put together a big list of non-toy gift ideas, plus a few really fun gifts that are kind of toys, but cool toys. AND then I finished off the list with a few fun ideas for big gifts.

It was so fun to put this together, and I know you’ll find something on here for all those kids on your list!


  1. Magazines. This is a great gift that keeps giving because they get a new one every month! I recommend ordering now because usually the first issue doesn’t come for a month or two.
    1. For little kids, Ladybug Magazine, High Five Magazine, Ranger Rick Jr., and Lego Club Jr. (this one is free!)
  2. Educational placemats. We had these growing up and they made mealtime super fun. I love this set for older kids, and this set for younger kids!
  3. Cookie cutters. I love making sugar cookies with my kids, and this set is only $32 and includes shapes for all the holidays, plus the alphabet!
  4. Card Games. My kids love card games, and they’re so good for family time. We love Sleeping Queens and face cards so we can play Speed or War or Nine Innings.
  5. Monthly subscription boxes. These are another great gift that keeps on giving! Here are some I’ve heard great things about
    1. Little passports: Ages 3-13, a box about travel and exploration.
    2. Kiwi Crate: Ages 0-16+, a box with hands-on science and art projects.
    3. KidStir: Ages 5-10, Fun cooking kits just for kids
    4. BitsBox: Ages 6-14, Teaching computer science and coding
    5. Pley: Ages 0-12, Activity box with toy rentals
    6. Pipsticks: Ages 1-100, a monthly box of fun stickers. They have a kid’s box or an adult box!
  6. Books. Books are always a good idea! If you need good ideas for which ones to buy, my sister has a really good list on her blog here, and my mom just started a blog about the best kids books with tons of good recommendations.
  7. Travel Kits. I don’t know what it is about them, but kids having their own travel kits or bags makes them feel so grown up. A monogrammed travel bag (like these super cute ones!), a pretty toiletries kit (love this striped one), or a fun travel backpack would all be great.
  8. Watch. This is a great gift for almost any age! Little kids love watches (tons of good options here, and I love this LEGO one!), and there are so many nice ones out there for older kids. I really like this Lacoste one!
  9. Dress up. Endless entertainment, and great for helping them grow their imagination. There are tons of cute girl dress up items here, and cool ones for little boys here.
  10. Restaurant gift cards. This is a guaranteed win from siblings or Grandparents. A $5 gift card to the local frozen yogurt or smoothie shop? Definitely a win. Bonus idea: give it with a card that says it can only be used for a special date with you. They’ll love the one-on-one time!
  11. Audiobooks. I’ve talked before about how audiobooks are my secret parenting weapon. You can see some of our favorites, and why we love audiobooks so much right here. You could purchase an Audible account as the gift, or buy an actual CD (just make sure the person you’re buying for has a CD player!)
  12. Snap Circuits Jr. My mom bought this for B for his birthday a couple of years ago and it’s so cool. Fun for little girls and boys who like experiments and putting things together.
  13. Art supplies. We just discovered an awesome youtube channel called “Art For Kids Hub” where kids learn to draw tons of fun things, and my boys are obsessed. So for Fos’ birthday last month, we got him a drawing pad and colored pencils so we can keep all his drawings in one place.
  14. Babysitting Kit. This is a fun one for tween girls who are just starting to babysit. I found this good guide on Pinterest, and you could put it together yourself, or give her a special bag, a game or two, and a list of the things she can put in it to create her own babysitting bag.
  15. Family Games. I mentioned card games above, but other games are so fun too. Some of our favorites are: Watch Ya’ Mouth, Yahtzee, Battleship, Pie Face, and Apples to Apples
  16. Mermaid Tails. These have become super popular and they’re so fun for girls of all ages. These ones are for adults and for kids and you can swim in them! But I also love this one that’s a blanket, so it’s fun and useful!
  17. Craft Supplies. If you have a child who loves to craft, get them some new craft supplies! Like this pack of pom poms, pipe cleaners, and googly eyes, or this giant container of foam stickers and activities.
  18. Stick Horses. These are so fun, and only $13!
  19. Flower press. Got a nature lover? This flower press is so cool and will help them turn their nature finds into gorgeous, preserved art!
  20. Quiet Books. My mom got us a quiet book for the kids a few years ago and it’s a favorite for church! This one is good and under $30, and this is the one she gave us.


  1. Magnatiles. I’ve heard SO many good things about these, so I’ve put them on my list to get my kids for Christmas this year!
  2. Magnetic letters. In the Educational Activities for My Kids post I did a few weeks ago, I shared these magnetic letters. They make a great gift because they’re colorful and fun to stick on the fridge, but also great for teaching!
  3. Camp castle playmats. I love a good playmat for kids, and these ones are like those old city ones, but they’re made of vinyl so they’re easy to wipe clean! They also come in small placemat sizes too so you can travel with them or have them at the table!
  4. Num Noms Lipgloss Truck Craft Kit. Ok, I would have died over this when I was a little girl. Make your own lipgloss? Yes, please.
  5. Hape Checkout Register. Cash registers were SO fun for me when I was a kid, and this wood one is super cool!
  6. Puzzles. These are some of our FAVORITE puzzles. We’ve had them for years and they’ve lasted through all our boys. It’s 4 puzzles for only $10!


  1. Swing Set: If you have space in your backyard, this is a great option! Build it in the backyard on Christmas Eve and send them on a treasure hunt in the morning to find it!
  2. Basketball Hoop: Such a good one for those sports-loving kids! There is also a little kid version!
  3. Trampoline: My in-laws bought a trampoline for my sister in law’s family a few years ago and she said it’s the best family gift they’ve ever received. Endless entertainment for everyone!
  4. American Girl Dolls: Getting my American Girl Doll when I was little was maybe the best Christmas ever. They’re such special dolls! They also have a much more affordable version (under $25!) here!
  5. Surprise Family Trip: These are my favorite kind of Christmas gifts. “Guess what? We’re leaving on a family trip tomorrow!” Family cruises are such an affordable way to travel and would be such a fun surprise gift for your family. You can check out a bunch of deals here!
  6. Play Kitchen: I loved play kitchens when I was little, and now there are so many really really cute ones. I love this white vintage one!
  7. Musical Instrument and lessons. Has your kid been wanting to learn the guitar? Surprise them with a guitar and a year of lessons!
  8. Outdoor Activities:
    1. Rollerblades, Ice Skates, Soccer Goals, Hula Hoops, Tennis Rackets, Bikes, Scooters, etc.
      1. Our favorite scooters for little kids are the Micro Scooters, but these are a similar style for much less!
      2. We also really recommend Strider Bikes for an introductory bike — they’re the best!
  9. Classes:  dance, cooking, sewing, cake decorating, woodworking, art, anything! This would be fun to do with your child too — I took a cake decorating class at Michael’s Craft Store with my dad in high school and loved it!
  10. Tickets to an event. I mentioned this above, but tickets to a concert, the movie theater, a musical or play, a sporting event, etc would be so fun as a big final gift.

If you have any other great ideas (toy or non-toy, big or small), leave a comment below!!


  1. Alicia Carol says:

    Great list! Thanks for sharing this. I came across an article about educational gifts.https://logicroots.com/MathBlog/top-best-gift-ideas-10-year-13-year-old-boys-girls-kids/

  2. Sam Andrews says:

    I liked your tip of getting mermaid tails for kids as a gift. My wife and I are wanting to get special gifts for our daughters. I’ll be sure to talk to my wife about getting mermaid tails.

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