If you’re anything like me, you struggle to come up with birthday gift ideas for all of the parties that happen throughout the year. With multiple kids in school, finding creative and affordable gifts can be a challenge. And let’s be honest – most kids don’t need more toys!

When my child is invited to a classmate’s party, we often don’t know the family well and don’t know what the child already has. I always worry about giving a child a gift he/she either has or doesn’t like.

I came up with a list of fun gifts that won’t break the bank, won’t frustrate parents, and are guaranteed to make the birthday boy/girl smile.

birthday gifts


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1. Art Supplies

*Put together a fun bundle of crayons, markers, glue sticks, construction paper, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, stickers – the sky is the limit! Inspire plenty of afternoon art projects and spark a child’s creativity.


2. Books!!

Give a basket of books! Personally, I can’t think of a better gift. As Walt Disney said, “there is more ¬†treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.” If you need a suggestion, check out my list of Best Board Books, 100 Picture Books You Must Read to Your Children, or my list of 100 Chapter Books You Must Read to Your Kids.


3. Cooking Basket

My kids LOVE to help me in the kitchen. Inspire a child’s love of cooking by giving a basket of kid-friendly culinary items. Put together items to make cupcakes, a make-your-own pizza kit, or a basket containing cooking utensils designed for kids!


4. Writing Basket

Find a fun journal, a few cute spiral notebooks, and a handful of colorful pencils. You could even throw in some blank paper or a “Create Your Own Book” kit to encourage kids to write their own book! Inspire kids to get their ideas on paper!!


5. Gift Cards for the Local Treat Shop

My kids would love to see a gift card to the local fro-yo or ice cream shop. It’s a rare treat around our house and most kids would really love getting a present that equates with a special outing that comes with a treat!


6. Movie Tickets

Head to your local movie theater (or Costco!) and grab a few movie tickets (or gift card, depending on how your local theater works!) and give a child the gift of a movie outing!


7. Outside Fun

We seem to need to replenish our outside toys every year. Frisbees get lost on rooftops, balls pop, bubbles spill, and toys break. Grab a selection of fun outdoor toys. From footballs and hula hoops to no-spill bubble buckets and slip and slides, a present comprised of outdoor toys is sure to be welcomed and appreciated.


8. White T-Shirt and Fabric Markers

Buy a plain white t-shirt in the child’s size and grab a package of fabric markers! Kids will have so much fun designing their own t-shirt! This gift is creative AND practical!


9. Gardening Supplies

Get a child’s hands dirty with a gift centered around gardening. Grab a cute trowel, some seeds, and a little pot or two. You can also grab a set of gardening tools made for kids.


10. Bath Stuff

Buy some fun foam bath stickers, bubble bath sporting the child’s favorite character, a bucket, bath capsules, or a toy boat!