This blog contains links to gift ideas for your convenience. Some are affiliate links, meaning if you purchase through that link I may earn credit at that store or a few pennies; however, links are provided solely for your convenience. The intention of this blog is to help inspire your gift giving or find items to add to your own wish list.
This year, supply chain concerns had me stock-piling gifts starting in September. Even with early planning, stocking stuffers always seem to be a last minute scramble. While delivery times may take longer than normal this year, these stocking stuffer ideas should be available last minute with Amazon Prime shipping. If you don’t already have Prime shipping you can try it for free for 30 days with this link.
Therapeutic & Nurturing Gift Ideas
Growing up in a large extended family, every year I would receive a stocking from my grandmother that included toothpaste, a new toothbrush, and bandaids. Grandma managed buying for her 14 grandchildren and later great grandchildren by choosing the same items but personalizing them for each of us. I might have Fraggle Rock bandaids while my brother had Bert & Ernie. Personalization is important for communicating I see you and I value what is unique about you. Even if you are filling stockings for multiple loved ones, find a way to make them unique. I continue those traditions from my grandmother because it is super practical to make sure to replace toothbrushes and toothpaste every December, but mostly because bandages are an important tool for foster and adoptive parents to have on hand.
Band-Aids are a (cheap and easy) way to nurture your kids and show them that you care about their hurts, whether they are physical, emotional, or historical. A child who requests a bandage is giving you an opportunity to provide intensive nurturing in a brief interaction, and the band-aid is a physical and visual reminder to your child for as long as the adhesive lasts that you love them and are providing nurture and care. Offering bandages for old scars and even hurts that did not leave a scar can provide a corrective emotional experience and create more connection. I love these (Welly has a lot of great ones!)
For extra nurturing, put some special lotion in your stocking that you can offer to share with your child. A nurturing hand massage as you apply lotion to your child’s hands can be a great moment for connection.
Stockings are also a great place to add in sensory toys and fidgets that can be therapeutic and fun. Perhaps your child is more likely to try a sensory toy from Santa than they are to accept it from you. Just like telling someone to “calm down” generally just makes them more upset, most people don’t really appreciate being reminded to use coping skills. A toy from Santa will likely be tried, creating an opportunity for parents to casually comment how soothing that seems.
Top 5 Sensory Stock Stuffers
- SCENTsory Putty (this is tactile and olfactory input)
- Essential oils (these can be soothing or alerting)
- Loop ear plugs (these will be in my stocking because they look more like funky jewelry than ear plugs)
- Chew necklace
7 Great Fidget Gift Ideas
Remember that Fidget Toys can also be therapeutic and provide sensory input. (The clicking on the fidget cubes is more auditory sensory input than I prefer personally, but it may be great for you or your kids.) They are also great for distraction and keeping hands and minds busy if prone to boredom.
- Push bubble bracelet (this can work for lots of ages and stay with you all the time)
- Glow in the dark “Monkey Noodle”
- Speks magnetic fidget sphere
- Magnetic fidget rings
- Dodecagon fidget cube
- Wikki Stix
- Unique stress balls
I would love to know what other ideas you have or sensory toys and fidgets that your family loves!
Don’t forget to check out these other ideas:
- Holiday Gift Ideas for Foster & Adoptive Parents
- Sensory Gift Ideas for Kids of All Ages & Sizes
- Gift Ideas for Single Adoptive & Foster Moms that Speak to her Heart
- Gift Ideas for Counseling Therapists