Both times we’ve had Northwest vlogger meet ups, we’ve had a gift exchange for the kids. Something small that we give to everyone. We don’t discuss it before hand, or set a price limit, we just come bearing gifts.
This time, with Summer almost upon us, I wanted to embrace some outdoor fun.
These sand buckets and shovels are from the dollar store. They are available in pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple, and have a slight glitter effect to them. Once I got them home I used my Cricut, Sure Cuts A Lot software, and white vinyl to personalize each bucket.
Wren, Hannah, Elise, Ethan, Leila, & Scarlet – AKA Wheels.
(Since Wren & Christina were a surprise, it was originally just Heels, but after a quick trip to the dollar store and 5 minutes in my craft room – Wren had a bucket all her own.)
Included in the buckets were:
Sidewalk Chalk: The Dollar store sells a box of sidewalk chalk that contains 4 packages of 5 chalks, which breaks the cost down to 25cents per child with some left over for the host’s stash.
Bubbles: The Dollar store has three packs of bubbles in various colors and styles. Seriously, what kid doesn’t love bubbles?
Coloring Books: I tried to match each child’s interest/development level. Make sure you flip through the book and ensure that any activity pages would be well suited to the recipient’s age. For the younger girls, I tried to find books that had large scale simple outlines, and for the older kids, I focused on Sesame Street characters that they were fond of.
Crayons: While the dollar store does sell crayons, this is one area that I refuse to skimp on. Crayola has been making crayons for years, and considering how many Hannah puts in her mouth, I feel safer choosing a product from a big brand like Crayola instead of an off brand. This is your personal choice, I’ve just always been partial to Crayola. Back to school sales are a great time to stock up of art supplies like this, and I keep a few boxes in my craft closet for gifts like this.
Snacks: This can be tailored to the child as well. I filled 1 snack sized Ziploc bag with goldfish crackers on one side and Trader Joe’s version of animal crackers on the other. I separated the two with a clothes pin that made the bag look like a butterfly. I was inspired by this Pinterest Pin.
Each bucket was about $5, so it was very budget friendly. The items were useful, as well as season and age appropriate, and the customized bucket was a nice crafty touch.
I considered adding filler to the bottom of the bucket (like Easter grass or crinkle cut paper) but decided that (a) it wasn’t useful to the child and (b) it would just make a mess, especially once the crayons were taken out of the box. Sometimes simpler is better.