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This year, much to my 6 year old’s dismay, I requested “no gifts” on her birthday party invitation. Why? She still had unopened toys from last year’s party. The absolute last thing she—or our home—needed was more toys. We have enough stuffed animals to fill a make-believe zoo, enough LEGOs to build a metropolis, and enough dress-up clothes to rival Cher Horowitz’s closet. So with more holiday gifts about to enter our home, I’m looking for kids gift ideas that aren’t toys.
If your home is also swimming in oft-forgotten playthings and are looking for non-toy holiday gifts, we have some favorites to consider. From options to spark learning and creativity to practical items they’ll love like a special bath towel, cozy sweater, or decorations for their bedroom. Read on for 10 of the best holiday gifts that aren’t toys.
Combine digital learning with hands-on games to encourage STEM skills, reading, and creativity with a starter kit from Play Osmo.
This set is perfect for kids just beginning their educational journey and is recommended for ages 5-10.
Works with an iPad or Fire tablets.
Get 40% off select Play Osmo kits at checkout—no code needed!
For an elevated basic they can wear again and again—and that will last through wash after wash—grab a quarter-zip sweater from Vineyard Vines. It's made with a moisture-wicking cotton blend and comes in seven colors.
Sizes 2T - Kids XL
Gift a yearly subscription to Nat Geo Kids magazine where little ones can learn about animals, the environment, and more. Plus, they'll love getting their own mail each month!
Etsy | Little Hands and Nature
For the kid who's always asking to make experiments or potions, grab this cute sea-themed potion sensory kit.
Holiday-themed potions also available.
This beautiful, 3D puzzle is a unique gift for the unicorn-loving kid.
Etsy | Joyful Bundles
Bluey is one of the few shows loved by kids and parents alike. Bring Bluey into bath time with this personalized hooded towel.
Other characters available, too!
The most funny answer wins in this kid-friendly version of the fill-in-the-blank card game Cards Against Humanity. This edition also includes illustrations, so even the youngest family members can get in on the fun.
Made of 100% cotton canvas, these sensory swings can be used indoors or outside for a comfortable spot where kids can hang out.
Six color combinations available.
Etsy | ORANTNEON
Made to look like a vintage neon sign, this custom wall art puts a kid's name in lights and brightens their room.
If they're not quite ready to pack for a trip themselves, at least make it easy for them to transport their own luggage with this set that includes a backpack, rolling suitcase, lunchbox, neck pillow, and luggage tag.
Multiple patterns available.
This post was in partnership with Play Osmo and Vineyard Vines but all of the opinions within are those of The Everymom editorial board. We only recommend products we genuinely love.