I've been scoping out Pintrest for stocking ideas and it seems there an awful love of wasteful ideas out there. There seem to be a lot of suggestions for little toys that 1. take up space in your house 2. cost money and 3 have the expectation to be thrown away or broken within days of being received. I am not that type of mom. I hate clutter with a passion. In fact I often joke that I'd be happiest living in a single room with four white walls and that's it. I'm constantly throwing away and giving away things we don't use. I just can't stand to have extra stuff just lying around taking up space. And with three kids there are ample items threatening and succeeding in doing just that. So with that mindset, there is no way I want to fill my kids' stockings with junk just to fill it. In addition I try and be frugal and wise with our money and giving my kid a 10 cent toy that will be broken in 5 minutes is like throwing money in the garbage. So I'd rather fill the stockings with things they will actually use for the long haul. So here's my list of what might be surprising my children in their stockings Christmas morning:
Character Shampoo and/or conditioner
Character toothbrushes and tooth paste
(Believe it or not, we've done this lots in the past-and the kids LOVE it! Seeing Spiderman on your shampoo instantly turns it from a necessity gift of shampoo into a Spiderman gift)
(Ok, I know-these might seem like throw away gifts-but we're down to the crusty bits of playdough and we can see the white underneath all our water colors. Instead of picking up a new set during the week why not wait 5 weeks and give it to them Christmas morning? And my older daughter had a beloved monkey whose arm fell off hence she'll be getting a replacement on Christmas)
Thermos (My 2nd grader desperately needs one)
Bubble bath and/or bath crayons, paints, etc.
Individual bags of their favorite treats like Cheeze its, Goldfish, Pretzels, fruit snacks, etc.
I might throw in an extra tiny toy here or there like those tubes of zoo or farm animals but this list is going to easily cause those stockings to overflow. And nearly 100% of the items in their stocking are going to be useful and used! Win-Win!