Christmas has gotten out of control if you ask me.
I'm a firm believer in not spoiling kids. My 10 month old doesn't need lavish gifts she can't even open, couture clothing or designer shoes under the Christmas tree. I also don't like the notion of bribing kids to behave well when they should always behave well twelve months a year.
This is a guide that I like to follow for gift giving in our home for adults and children
"Something you want, something you need, something you love, something to read."
Just how I like it. It isn't over the top or pretentious.
I'm not sure what Riley wants, but I know of a few things she loves, needs and some great books for her ever growing collection. And since making the change to chemical free, I've become more aware of what toys she has and plays with as well. So below I'm sharing with you a few of her non toxic, plastic and chemical free presents, AS WELL AS alternative options for different price points.
Kangaroo Ornament from HomeGoods
It's our daughter's first Christmas, so how appropriate that we start her Christmas ornament collection! I would love to give her eighteen special ornaments on her 18th Christmas for her to have when she moves out. Secretly I'm hoping she lives with us until she is 35, but still.
Plastic free and sentimental, made of ceramic and the perfect heirloom.
* Alternative: You can also get a bargain with these super cute ceramic ornaments which are handmade in Brisbane. Plastic free and made with the intention of keeping in the family and out of landfills.
Beaver Puppet from Target
Set me back a whopping $10 and she lit up like a kid on Christmas (how appropriate) when she saw it. I'm going to clock hours of entrainment with this fuzzy little friend during story time.
* Alternative: Or you can try these adorable puppets from Biome in Brisbane. These puppets are made fairly in Nepal by ethical/sustainable businesses run by Nepalese women. Pretty neat and they will last a lot longer. The wombat puppet is a personal fav.
Headbands from Nordstrom
My daughter has been wearing headbands since she was 7 days old. She is used to wearing them thankfully, and I simply adore her in them. She doesn't have a lot of hair yet, and they make her look super girly which I love. These bows are well made, affordable and last for a long time.
* Alternative: Looking for an Aussie owned and Aussie made company? Check out Little Raya Sunshine. She hand makes gorgeous baby accessories in Melbourne, VIC.
Dr Bronner's Magic Balm
A great stocker stuffer for the little baby who has it all, but just needs a little extra moisture. I love this balm, we all use it in our house. I use it when she has cradle cap, or when she just needs a bit of hydration.
Let's Sign, Baby Board Book
BOOKS! I'm obsessed with children's books and I'm always giving them to other people's kids as presents. They are practical, great for learning and easily passed on to friends or donated when you're done with them.
I wanted to teach our daughter sign langue for a long time, and I finally got the perfect book. It covers the family members, eating, playing and the basic hand gestures alphabet as well.
Santa's Aussie Holiday by Maria Farrer and Anna Walker
Since it's our daughter's first Christmas, I want to start new family traditions for the three of us. One of which is reading a festive book in the lead up to Christmas as well as Christmas jammies. I haven't found any pj's yet, and I would love if you could comment below as to where I could hunt some down.
But back to the book! I have two favourite Australian illustrators, Rod Clement and Anna Walker. I've emailed with both of them and they are, no surprise, fantastic people. Anna is so talented across a variety of mediums. In my opinion, her best work can be seen in her new book, Florette.
You can find her on Instagram if you're a nerd like me and into following authors and illustrators on social media.
Wooden Story Blocks from HomeGoods
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Totally plastic free, so one tick in the non toxic column. There is just something about wooden toys that really romanticizes having a wee baby. These colorful blocks are made of wood from certified suppliers, treated with beeswax and botanical oils and packaged in a gorgeous eco friendly canvas bag. This 50 piece set is free from chemicals and handmade in the Beskidy Mountains of Poland. My husband and I lived in Poland for two years, so I think I'll like watching her play with these pieces of Poland and reflect back to a different time, before her, that now seems like a lifetime ago.
* Alternative: I also love the company Noc Noc Wooden Toys if you are looking to support Aussie made. They sell personalized toys (swoon), rattles, tethers, and blocks.
What are you looking forward to this Christmas? What are your go to places to shop for your loved ones?
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