With Christmas just around the corner, chances are you’re already thinking about what to surprise your kids with on the big morning. Let me guess, they’ve already penned their extensive letters to Santa, right?
You probably at least have an idea of the kind of things they want to tear open from underneath the tree. But what about the humble stocking fillers? Far too often, this Christmas tradition is merely an afterthought. Fruit, chocolate, coal. We usually hastily throw together the stocking on the night of Christmas Eve, and it shows.
In the last few years, however, I’ve taken to getting a little bit more imaginative with my stocking fillers. And I’ve found that it can actually be a really fun experience. You can cram in a bunch of present that don’t warrant wrapping paper of their own. Just watch your child’s beaming smile as he (or she) digs through this forgotten Christmas relic.
Filling a stocking for your kids shouldn’t be boring. Here are just a few from the ideas pool I’ve dipped into over the last couple of Christmases to get you on your way.
If your kids are at that hyperactive Cartoon Network age, you’ll know how seriously they take their trading card collections. Every single penny of their pocket money goes on a
shiny little packet of these cards. They’re pretty much a young person’s version of the lottery.
As such, I’m sure you’re well aware of the desperation to complete their sets. And between all the shiny and rare cards, it can be quite a costly venture. One year, I found a website with Pokemon cards for sale. You could pick out and buy individual cards – the easiest way to making sure they get what they want. I’ll never forget the moment they finally bagged themselves the shiny Charizard they’d been searching for.
If you’re concerned that your child isn’t reading enough, books are a great way to fill a stocking. You might have to stick with smaller books in order to fit them in, though. Comic books are also a great option, as kids love them, and they can easily be slotted in. For younger children, colouring books are also a lot of fun.
If you really want to make kids learn to love the stocking, fill it with something just as impressive as their main presents. Imagine their surprise when, while expecting an apple or an orange, they find a portable games console waiting for them. Take stock of the gifts you’ve already got them, and see if any of them are small enough to pass as stocking fillers. Video games, for example, are another great way to give it some real value. With any luck, they might even forget about the rest of their presents!
A little creative thinking can turn this often overlooked Christmas tradition into something treasured. Let me know of any other ideas you have for stocking fillers while you wait for my 2015 Holiday Gift Guide to drop!