Technology is a great addition to many parts of our lives. Think of the advancements that we have made in so many areas, from medicine, to education, to business. In fact, I would not be writing this blog without technology. But sometimes we get a little too caught up in all the devices and screens at our disposal. We as adults spend all day working on computers, only to spend our down-time interacting with our mobile devices or watching our TVs. Our children’s lives are similar, especially this year as so many of them participate in school entirely online. That is why this blog is to offer up some non-technical gift giving ideas to promote relaxation, wellness, and creativity in your child’s life while getting away from the glowing screen of an electronic device.
Gifts that Encourage Creativity
Humans are their most creative when they are children. The reason for this is that the brain’s frontal cortex “becomes more rational” in our early 20s. So, what better time than childhood to give gifts that encourage creativity and artistic skills?
Children love art supplies, painting kits, crafting supplies, and materials with which they can create things. You can find great kits for making crafts like friendship bracelets, window art, blankets, quilts, birdhouses, bath bombs, and so much more. You can purchase pre-made kits of art supplies or build your own. Journals and multi-colored gel pens are fun for children old enough to write and create journals or scrapbooks. Legos and other building blocks allow children to build models of specific things or come up with their own designs and creations. A walk through your local craft supply store will reveal all sorts of options for Christmas gifts that will bring out the creative side of your child. My grandson Jase loves to color with my gel pens. When I arrive, he always asks if I brought my gel pens. It’s a great bonding time, especially when he asks me to help him with his coloring page. That was part of the reason I created coloring pages from the Grandma’s Magic Pillows storybook.
Gifts that Encourage Playing Outside
Did you know that when you breathe fresh air, your heart muscles relax and your blood pressure slows? Children who play outside have reduced stress levels and improved concentration, and experience more even-tempered moods and better sleep.
Fortunately, there are all sorts of games and activities to get kids playing outside. You can gift traditional sporting goods like basketballs, footballs, soccer balls, roller skates, and jump ropes. There are a variety of outdoor exploration kits at toy stores that encourage children to pay attention to the animals and plants around them whether you are on a nature walk with them or they are simply playing in the back yard. You can purchase games like corn-hole (bean bag toss), lawn darts (not technically darts anymore) and badminton, where they can play with siblings or friends outside.
Depending on the climate where you live, children love to receive sleds and tools for building snow forts. You can also find instructions on how to make an ice rink in your own back yard. Purchase ice skates for everyone in the family, and you have a fun, new activity this winter for family bonding and exercise!
Gifts that Encourage Relaxation
Grandma’s Magic Eye Pillows are really two gifts in one. Not only does your child receive their own weighted eye pillow to use now when they want to calm their mind and relax. They also learn lifelong habits about how to take time away from a hectic environment. They learn about mindfulness, and meditation, and how good it feels to step away and relax their mind and body for a few minutes. This is something that many adults struggle to implement into their daily routine. Learning this healthy habit early in life will help them continue this behavior into their teenage years, throughout college, and into adulthood.
We have three new holiday prints this year: Christmas Bear, Super Santa, and Mountain Holiday. We recommend the Mommy (or Daddy) and Me bundle that contains two eye pillows plus the Grandmas Magic Pillows storybook. Plus, you can take advantage of our 15% off sale on all items through November 30, 2020, which makes it easy to add extra eye pillows for everyone in the family.
Gifts that are About Fun and Games
Depending on what Mother Nature decides to send us this winter, we may be spending a lot of time at home and inside the house. Board games are still popular, with plenty of choices to help your child develop strategic and critical thinking skills while having fun without an electronic device. Many kids love participating in a regular family game night. It is an easy and inexpensive way to bond and have fun together.
Classic games like Sorry, Monopoly, Clue, Candy Land, Uno, Chutes and Ladders, and Life are still popular and readily available. Of course, there are numerous specialty versions of Monopoly, from Unicorns & Llamas to Star Wars, Avengers, National Parks, Harry Potter, and of course, the classic version. Card games like Mille Bornes, Phase 10, and Skip Bo are perfect for family play or for kids to play together. If your family loves to travel, check out Trekking the National Parks, which teaches kids about the national parks around the United States. Pictionary is fun for families, with teams competing to guess what their team member is drawing. In the game A Little Off Topic, kids get to be creative and think of words on a certain topic that start with a letter of the alphabet.
Of course, we are not suggesting that you never let your children play with electronics or have screen time. Technology is a part of life, more and more with each generation. These toys and gift-giving ideas will help develop other interests at a young age that they may keep throughout their lives. The gift of creativity, of the outdoors, of relaxation, and of fun and games is one that benefits us no matter our age.