OR a Christmas Gift Guide of things NOT to give to my kids, please
This is the time of the year when all those pesky Christmas Gift Guides start popping up all over social media. Especially as every blogger all over the Western world (including myself) has hopped on the Black Friday bandwagon.
We have so many suggestions on what we should should be buying, so for a change here follows a guide to all those Christmas gifts you should not buy.
Our kids have been given some of these things out of the kindness of people’s hearts but I can’t blame the aunties entirely, in our household even Santa or Father Christmas himself has made some daft errors of judgement.
Let’s face it, buying gifts for kids is complicated. The choice is vast, the expectations are to the moon and back and therefore the pressure on us is monumental. This is the time of the year when parents start to sweat under the weight of childhood expectations. Somehow we have to find that elusive sweetspot where these expectations match the adult budget.
We all know the perfect gift does not exist and trying to find it will not make our children (or even us) happy, but even so we chase the impossible dream, even if it’s only for one day.
Most gifts are lovingly bought and thoughtfully given. Some are very expensive. It’s a huge pity if all that kindness and money has all gone to waste on a gift that’s never used or is unsuitable.
So I have put together this list by consulting a panel of experts (other parents) and I was happy to discover that my husband and I are not the ony ones suffering under the affliction of the terrible Christmas gift, it appears to be a universal problem.
1. The Problem of Size:
If you are buying a gift for a child who lives in an apartment you probably wouldn’t give them a swings and slide set. You wouldn’t give them a toy giraffe that reaches the ceiling or teddy bear that could double up as a bedspread for a super king, would you??
- ‘My son was given an enormous ride on JCB – it was fun but way too big for our tiny back garden!’ MummyIsAGadgetGeek.co.uk
- ‘We used to live in a small flat in London. For some reason my Mum and sister always bought massive gifts! I know they meant well but we didn’t need a table for mega blocks or a Fisher price door. There was just about room to open the bedroom door without adding large lumps of plastic to the mix’. mummyswhineclub.com
- ‘The Fisher price little people sit and stand skyway. It’s tall and bulky and just gets in the way and you can’t take it down once it’s put together!’ readaraptor.co.uk
- ‘A toy Grand piano! It’s music was made with little bells under the keys but it was really large and really loud. It may have recently come to a tragic end…. I just don’t know how it broke’. winnettes.com
2. The Problem of Noise:
OK, I get that some noise is ‘good’ noise! I do love that my kids enjoy making music and I like listening to them playing (as long as the practice at the other side of the house, behind a shut door). However, there are some toys that were designed by people who secretly hate parents.
- ‘A Frozen doormat that plays let it go every time you stand on it!! Two years and still going painfully strong!!!’ pinkpearbear.com
- ‘Singing Elsa. ‘Let it go’ on repeat when she is motion activated has scared me so many times walking into the playroom at night time it’s not funny!’ themoneywhisperer.co.uk
- ‘Drums and a guitar. I figured they absolutely hated us that year.’ Twinderelmo.co.uk
- ‘A recorder. By Boxing Day I wanted to snap it in two!!’ fivelittledoves.com
- ‘Water Flutes… Not only do they come out at bath time but randomly my daughter will find one (I think there are 5) they are basically recorders.’ katykicker.com
- ‘Anything with a really irritating ‘tune”. myboysclub.co.uk
- ‘A couple of years ago my Mum bought my then 3 & 1 year old the following:- 1 x toy trumpet, 1 x toy drum set, & 1 x harmonica. I’m still wondering what I did to ‘annoy’ her that year!’ themumconundrum.com
3. The Problem of Refills:
Not a battery in the house!
I suffered from no-batteries-unusable-toy guilt for years. Now I avoid giving gifts that need constant supplies to make them work. If you can’t keep buying an endless supply of batteries, shaving cream, bullets or chocolate chips, it’s probably better not to give a gift that require them.
- ‘A Peppa Pig microphone, it didn’t have an off switch, and it ran out of batteries SO quickly it was doing the creepy singing constantly. It ended up in with batteries removed AND in the bin!‘ emilyandindiana.com
- ‘A nerf gun – I’ve been ‘losing’ the bullets all year!’ womaninprogress.co.uk