It’s almost that time of year. You know…the one where those huge holiday toy books come in the mail and no matter how hard you try to hide them, your children find them like it was their job.
Yep. That time.
As they flip through the pages, they’re bound to come across whatever the “hot toys” of this year are. If you’ve bought them one of these toys in previous years, you know where they end up by this time next year after or even sooner…usually at the bottom of the toy box or at the back of the closet. Am I right?
Why not try something new this year? Why not give experiences over gifts? You’ll probably spend the same amount of money (or maybe even less) and your child will be left with the memory or an experience they’ll never forget.
What types of experiences can you give?
There is no right or wrong answers here, so it really depends what your child likes or what types of experiences you want to expose them to.
Maybe it’s a day trip to a museum out of town or tickets to see a kids’ show or musical. Speaking of music, maybe it’s introductory lessons to help them learn an instrument. If your child likes art, then perhaps art classes or if your child loves professional sports, maybe you can score tickets to a game with their favorite team.
I think you get the idea.
In the end, the goal is to give them the gift of an experience that will last them a lifetime. If you give art or music lessons, they can further develop those skills as they get older and who knows where it may lead them.
A couple of years ago I bought my girls a few music lessons so that they could explore different instruments. They loved it! Fast forward two years and my girls now each take musical instrument lessons that they enjoy! See what I mean?
As you do your holiday shopping think about this…
What’s going to happen to that toy that your kids just have to have this year? What’s that going to do for them in the long run? Sure they’ll have fun for a hot second, but after that, it’s over faster than you can say Cabbage Patch Doll (that was a hot toy when I was a kid!).
Why not skip the Black Friday craziness and opt for the gift of an experience? It truly is the gift that keeps on giving.
Written by: Kristina Cappetta
Edited & Designed by: Christina Denham
My name is John Haber. I’m a Pediatric Occupational Therapist and the founder of Nogginsland. I became a COTA in 2003, and then went back to school much later, receiving my Master’s Degree in OT from Mercy College in New York in 2016.
Over the years, I’ve worked with a variety of populations in different settings, from school districts, to developmental disability centers, to children’s hospitals.