Under the Tree: Gift Preview

I am firmly an early shopper when it comes to Christmas time. I don’t do Black Friday because A) too crowded and B) no need- I am almost always done with my shopping well before Thanksgiving. This year is no exception, though I am still waiting on delivery of one item for Mr. Monkey and I still need to get him a few stocking stuffers.

I’m pretty excited about the kid’s gifts this year. I did a good job of staying on budget (I set a total holiday budget of $400 this year, that includes cards, gifts for everyone on the list, including me, decor, etc) and trying to stick to the “something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read” plan.

For Miles (age 6) the something he wants is always Legos, so I got him a few small sets, including this soccer themed one which took forever to find and was the only soccer themed one that didn’t cost hundreds of dollars:


Completing the soccer them will be his something to wear of a Manchester City soccer club t-shirt and scarf.

His “something to read” is this:


He has been DYING to learn to knit, so his something he needs will be some yarn and needles to go with the book. I think he is going to love it. I think I need to reteach myself to cast on before Dec. 25th.

Stocking stuffers for him will be some paint for finger painting in the bathtub (thank you Target dollar section), a small stuffed animal, and some non-Lego brand mini-figure soccer players. I may steal some of his Halloween candy from his bag and put it in his stocking since I am totally fine with being cheap like that.

For Ev (age 2):

Her “something she wants”:




Can I just say that it is SUPER annoying that the African American doll house figures cost more than the white family dollhouse people do? I didn’t get a mommy figure yet as I think she can use one of her “Princess” dollies to capture my true essence.

Her “something to wear” is so freaking cute I can’t stand it:


Her something to read is a set of Fancy Nancy books (that sound you just heard was my husband groaning. He is not a fan, I think they are cute).

Her “something she needs” is this guy:


She is OBSESSED with Yo Gabba Gabba these days and has three of the friends already. Toodie, Brobee and Foofa go with her almost everywhere. She needs Muno, obviously.

As for me, I’m hoping for a new phone case (something I need) and maybe a cheap sewing machine (I want to learn) or the board game “Ticket to Ride” in the Europe version.

How about you, friends? What is on your list?

One thought on “Under the Tree: Gift Preview

  1. velocibadgergirl says:

    I love gift posts!

    I’m trying REALLY HARD to keep our buying for the kids to a minimum this year since Nico’s bday is January 15 and Elliott’s is February 25. Plus last year one of MB’s uncles bought Nico five big construction toys. FIVE. From one couple!

    For Nico, almost 5:
    He received a logging truck for his birthday last year which he loved, which was sadly a piece of crap. It broke after barely a full day of gentle play. Unfortunately the only other logging truck I could find was the Bruder version, which I’ve never seen on sale for less that $43 on Amazon. But I posted on my local mom fb group to see if anyone had seen it in town, and it was at marshalls for $29.99! This will be his only wrapped gift from us, I think.

    For his stocking:
    Fuzzy Christmas socks from old navy
    A packet of Christmas cookies
    Lightning McQueen snack containers for his school lunches
    A Lego snowman kit
    And I think he’s going to ask Santa for one of those Audubon cheeping stuffed birds for himself and for his brother, in which case I will shell out for two.

    Santa always brings books, so he is getting The Midnight Library and Peggy: a Brave Chicken on a Big Adventure, both of which are wonderful and have been checked out from the library nonstop for months. He will also probably get a vehicles floor puzzle that I got from his book order and a wooden US map puzzle that my boss gave me as a hand-me-down (though I might save the map for his birthday).

    For Elliott, almost 2:
    A local woodworker that I know made big sturdy wooden logging trucks for the art / craft show at my workplace this November, so I snagged one for Elliott.

    In his stocking:
    Fuzzy socks to match Nico’s
    Packet of cookies
    Melissa & Doug sea creature symphony wooden instruments, scored on a local buy / sell fb group for $5
    Probably a cheepy bird
    If I can find one, his own little kid’s flashlight, since he’s fascinated with Nico’s

    There’s a rumor Nico will ask Santa for a Duplo police car for Elliott. I’m hoping he forgets since we have a million Duplos already and I’m not sure they make a police car.

    Santa will bring Elliott the Little Blue Truck Christmas book and hopefully another book that I’ve yet to find. I need suggestions! He is excited about learning his letters and numbers, but I feel like we already have every ABC and 123 book in existence. He already has a bajillion puzzles, but I might try to find him something with small abc pieces to play with. At my mom’s he likes taking the pieces from an alphabet puzzle and laying them out on an alphabet poster. I’m still pondering.

    For my husband, hard to buy for:
    His favorite beer is Sam Adams Octoberfest, which always sells out by November. This year I secretly bought four boxes and stashed them in my office at work. He’s getting two for his birthday on December 13 and two for Christmas. I found a funny bacon-themed shirt at old navy on clearance over the summer and bought one for him and one for his brother.

    In his stocking:
    Burts Bees chapstick
    An adapter to change an iPhone 4 cord into an iPhone 5 cord
    Note telling him to look in the oven, where I will stash a cast iron skillet I scored for $8, used once by a lady I know.

    For me, who knows. I bought a picture frame I really love a few months ago and told MB to count it as a Christmas gift. I told him I want Randall Munroe’s book What If. I’m hoping for a starbucks gift card. If he asks for requests, I will tell him I want a pair of 9″ round cake pans.

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