Wednesday, December 30, 2009

an educational Christmas

You can only buy so many Brio train pieces, so many wooden blocks, so many picture books for gifts for the younger ones, but once the children are over 10 the possibilities of neat things to buy expands dramatically. Will loves all things science oriented so his haul from parents and aunties reflected that in Snap Circuit parts, a book of knots, a volcano making kit, and a solar car kit.

Mary had a very crafty Christmas with embroidery floss for making friendship bracelets, stencils and a drawing pad, and kits to make cards, erasers, and a latch hook rug.

In my ever super-thrifty way I found several of their gifts at the thrift store. My guess is that lots of kids out there don't consider science or crafts fun and discarded these gifts from grandma in favor of playing another round of Wii. When the children asked me if this was true, I said, "You could have 1 gift under the tree if I buy them at Target and 4 if I buy some from the thrift store. Which do you choose?"

1 comment:

me said...

My brother and I have an agreement - we spend no more than $20 on each niece/nephew. He gets away cheaper because I have only one but he has two but I digress.

This year I happened to visit one of the local dollar stores and found a wealth of items that I tossed together for his youngest son - aged 10.

There were wooden 3D puzzles for ages 10+. I bought one of each kind (well, two...I had to get some for Squirt as well!) and they had 10 different kinds - 2 for 1$.

They had "fossilized dinosaurs" - the ones that come with a small chisel and hammer and goggles that the kids have to "chip away" like a paleontologist. $1 each and five different kinds.

There were "Vortex Makers" - those little attachments for soda bottles.

Arts and Crafts sets of all kinds, from popsicle sticks to pom poms, including a build your own bird house..."Exploding Soda Bottle Surprise" (mentos and diet coke experiment)...I could go on and on.

I ended up spending more than the limited $20 for my nephew but you know what? The look on his face as he took all those things out of his bag was PRICELESS!

And Dad (who is currently raising the niece and nephew as Bro goes back to work) says he's been BUSY every day with something from the "goodie bag" and asking tons of questions about how this works and how that works.

Now that I've said that...I wonder what I did with Squirt's own Exploding Soda Pop Suprise...I know he'll be wanting to do that tomorrow...