What do our kids need? What comes to mind when I ask that question? Some might say toys, while others might say clothes, or the latest gadget. In the end our children need love and family. The rest is just the icing on the cake. Don’t we gift our children daily with a roof over their head, food on the table, back to school clothing and supplies. The list goes on and on. Christmas is whatever you family wants it to be. I love hearing about family’s Christmas traditions. As we start to make new traditions in our new home in a new state, I think about the special memories we are making together. The fun experiences of doing family activities or giving him opportunities to explore skills he’s never explored before.
So what do we want to give our kids for Christmas? We want them to rip open that present and smile with that gleam in their eyes. Whatever it is you choose to give them, consider one of these gifts to add to your bundle of gifts.
Who doesn’t love comfy pajamas? Support a BIPOC small business and order pajamas for the entire family. These comfy PJ’s come in beautiful neutral colors. https://goumikids.com/
Capture your family moments by using “an old fashioned” instant camera and create a monthly album together. Capturing moments is important for a our little ones. It helps them recall events, it helps them write stories, and most importantly keep traditions alive. https://kidamento.com/en-us/collections/all-products
This game is for the entire family! Go on a scavenger hunt together using the find and seek game. Find and Seek
Kids love bubbles, this a great gift for elementary kids. It comes with a set of wands in different sizes.bubble wands
If you have a backyard, consider an outdoor projector as a gift. You can have movie nights with the family and make it a new tradition outdoor projector
Kiwi Co is still my favorite gift! You can buy a monthly, tri-monthly, or yearly subscription. This is definitely a family fun activity. The activities are geared towards their age range and it goes all the way up to 12 years old. Kiwico
I think kids should have tons of books to read. Children love story books! It’s ok if your child reads the same book over and over. The point is to teach children a love for reading. https://mijabooks.com/ Mija Books is located in Lakewood, Ca. but the owner also has an online store. There are a diverse selection of books for children of all ages. So fill up your child’s home library now.
Looking to maintain Spanish in your home? Check out Spanish Word Game. Make learning Spanish fun through this interactive game for kids learning Spanish.
Lil Libros carries some wonderful board books for younger childrenLil Libros these are great introduction books and they have books for K-2 children as well.
We recently visited the California Science Museum in Los Angeles. I have to admit that I haven’t visited this place in years, so it was like going for the first time. I was very impressed with the space and exhibits. We didn’t do the special exhibits because we wanted to learn our way around the museum.
It turned out to be a fun experience as my son and husband went on a virtual ride and followed a photo time line of the Space Shuttle Endeavour making its way through Los Angeles. We also visited several of the permanent exhibits such as the Ecosystem exhibit and the Air and Space exhibit. We sat and listened to a presentation given by a scuba diver in one of the fish/shark tanks. My son was able to ask questions and interact with the presenter.
Our favorite part is definitely seeing the Space Shuttle Endeavour up close. It’s fascinating how much work went into making this shuttle and viewing different parts of the shuttle up close.
If you haven’t visited The California Science Center, I highly recommend you take your children. It provides a great learning experience as many of the exhibits have hands on learning activities. Please be aware there are strict COVID protocols in place. Adults have to show vaccination cards at the entrance and wear masks at all times unless we are eating.
As we get ready for the that special time of the year, I wanted to share some fun kid items I found. If you are looking for last minute gifts, consider one of these for your child.
I love giving books to kids, let’s face it, our kids don’t need another toy. I feel like books are priceless and all kids should have their own library. If you are in the Los Angeles/Orange County area, consider visiting Mija Books at Lakewood Mall. Recently, I visited Mija Books and for the first time in my life, I see books that represent my culture! The store is beautifully organized by age. There is even a Spanish section. I am so impressed with the plethora of diverse books being offered. There are also stickers, coloring books, crayons and affirmation cards. I just love it! Books vary in prices and begin at $7 for soft cover books. If you are not in the LA/OC area, you can also order on line at https://mijabooks.com I highly recommend their store.
4. Another favorite making it on my list this year is KiwiCo. I really love their age breakdown and their STEAM choices. https://www.kiwico.com They offer monthly, 3-month, and yearly subscriptions. I highly recommend this for children of all ages. They offer educational, but hands-on learning activities. Their directions are easy to understand and it’s an activity you can do with your child or let them challenge themselves and complete the task on their own.
As summer comes to a close I want to share some of the fun activities I did with my son. I provided some days where he was able to sit around, play, and watch a little TV. Sometimes we take fun day trips that include visiting friends or going to the beach. I created a short schedule for my son that includes some academics and afternoon playdates. This seemed to be the best mix for him.
I really love the Learning Bridges books! They are a great review of what he learned and he is introduced to new concepts for the upcoming school year. He completes about 2-3 pages daily and reads two chapters of Magic Tree House (he also has to write a reading response). This takes him about 1-1.5 hours to complete.
I decided to invest in two programs this summer. The first one is Kallpachay. Please read my prior post about my son’s experience. The next one I chose to invest in is KiwiCo. I’ve heard so much about them. You can have a monthly subscription, or every 3 months, or a yearly one. KiwiCo provides all the materials for your child. The directions are easy to follow and it has a lot of visuals. My son is a lego lover so following these directions is very simple for him. He needed minimal help from me. I chose a Science based subscription with some art activities. It is very much STEAM driven.
In his first subscription he made a claw for a game. He was so excited and it was wonderful to see his face light up as the claw came together. He even went as far as making a box to hold toys in it. Then, he asked me to take him to the 99 cent store so he can buy small toys to put inside the box and he made some fuzzy dolls with the KiwiCo materials. Now when his friends visit, they can grab a small toy using his claw. This is hands hands-on learning, literacy, science, and art all in a fun box!