You GUYS, they’re HERE! My heart could absolutely burst with excitement over this gift guide project, and it’s probably not for the reasons that you think…
It’s hard to explain how friends on the Internet just start to feel like the BFF you’d grab coffee with, but it’s true. This community has such a big part of my heart, and creating things that serve you and your family literally makes my heart the happiest it could be.
Let me just start by saying that my goal in putting together these gift guides is in no way about the stuff. I know we can start to feel overwhelmed and bombarded by all of the things of the holiday season. As my oldest grows, I feel more committed every year to not just give “stuff” for stuff’s sake, but to choose gifts that will serve a purpose. My goal was to create mindful gift guides filled with things that will challenge your kiddos’ thinking, inspire them, and encourage all the creativity their sweet little minds have swirling around inside.
This list will be EVER growing, so check back often as I will be adding things that I find during the season!
I also want to just share as a mama something that I always tell myself at the start of every holiday season: my kids won’t remember the THINGS, but they’ll remember how they felt. Establishing traditions, making memories, and small details that show the true reason for the holidays are what I pray is my focus, and I hope that for you too, sweet mama. Although this is a season of giving, the memories are the greatest gift our kids will ever receive from us. The rest is just extra <3 We should only give what we can in the season that we’re in. The rest is for memory making.
On that note, I hope you find these tools/gift guides helpful and inspiring. Love you all SO big!
*NOTE: please note that the links below are affiliate links, in which I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. I hope these links are helpful for you, but please only choose to use them if you’d like. Your support helps me to do so much more here at Pickle & Tot! xoxo
These activities and toys inspire all of the benefits of critical thinking and STEM! These activities will encourage out-of-the-box thinking and quickly become the activities they’ll reach for again and again (click on any item below for the link).
- Kanoodle 3-D Puzzle Brain Teaser
- Kanoodle Junior 3-D Puzzle
- Kanoodle Head to Head 2 Person Challenge Game
- Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot (voice activated)
- Fisher Price Code-and-Learn Kinderbot (ages 3-6)
- Learning Resources Code-and-Go Robot Mouse Challenge Set
- Artie Max, the Coding Drawing Robot
- Numberblocks Math Link Cube Activity Set
- National Geographic Marble Run Construction Set
- Marble Run Maze Building Kit
- ThinkFun Gravity Maze Marble Run Set
- MindWare KEVA Brain Builders Construction Set
- Lego Chain Reactions STEM Kit
- Learning Resources Gears! Gears! Gears! Set
- Mindware Keva Brain Builders Plank Set
- Keva Contraptions 200 Building Set
- STEM Builder Straw Constructor Set
- IG Builder STEM Set with Instruction Cards
Books & Series to Love
There’s nothing better than inspiring a love of reading…and these books are sure to do just that! With a mix of fiction and nonfiction, these books are a great place to start when building your home library this season (click any item below for the link).
- What Should Danny Do?
- A Little Spot of Feelings Book Box Set
- A Little Spot of Emotion Book Box Set
- A Spot of Emotion Plush Toy and Book Set
- What Do You Do With An Idea? Book Set and Idea Plush
- Human Anatomy for Kids: a junior scientists guide
- Ultimate BodyPedia by National Geographic: an inside out tour of the human body
- 5,000 Awesome Facts (about everything!) Volume 1
- 5,000 Awesome Facts (about everything!) Volume 2
- 5,000 Awesome Facts (about everything!) Volume 3
Games, Puzzles, and Challenges
Games that bring the family together and/or inspire and challenge thinking are the best. Add these games to your closet for family time that’s sure to be anything but boring (click any item below for the link)!
- Learning Resources Mental Blox Critical Thinking Game
- Mindware Q-bitz Solo Game
- Mindware Q-bitz Jr. Game
- Chuckle & Roar Family Bingo
- Alphabet Bingo
- Classic Mancala Game
- Qwirkle Mind Challenge Board Game
- Learning Resources TriFACTa Math Board Game
- Money Bags Coin Value Game
- SmartyPants Flashcard Sets (for all ages)
- Chuckle & Roar Scavenger Hunt (3 pack)
- Magnetic Wooden Logic Puzzle
There’s nothing better than the gift of creativity, and these activities are sure to inspire that and so much more (click any item below for the link)!
- Mindware Modern Patterns Coloring Collection
- Pattern Play Design Block Set
- Mindware Imagination Magnets
- Chuckle & Roar Dot Art Activity Set
- Jumbo 4′ x 3′ Aqua Doodle Floor Mat
- Crayola Color Chemistry Set
Inspire & Explore
There’s something amazing about inspiring a new hobby for your kiddos or encouraging them to explore what’s around them. Check out some of these gifts to help do both!