Maybe I’m a mean mommy, but I am not a fan of giving kids, especially toddlers, gobs of candy for every little holiday. From Halloween to Christmas to Valentine’s Day to Easter, it seems like kids are completely loaded down with nasty, sugary sweets. Yuck!
But, I don’t want my kids to miss out on all the fun things other kids do (and what I did) during these holidays, like “open” Easter baskets or hunt for plastic eggs filled with surprises. Now that Easter is nearly upon us, I’ve been trying to think of some candy-free ways that I can create a fun and special Easter basket for my kiddos and I think I’ve come up with a pretty fun list.
- Books. Books are pretty much my go-to gift for my kids. They love them, they can be found cheap (Goodwill, TJ Maxx, Marshalls) and the small ones are the perfect size for basket fillers.
- Water bottles. I got each of my kids a small water bottle or sippy cup. My daughter is into Paw Patrol so I picked up a Paw Patrol water bottle in the Target dollar spot. I also found a precious fox sippy cup at Target for my son.
- Socks. My kids grow out of and/or lose socks like you wouldn’t believe so we’re always needing more. One of my favorite things to do it roll up a pair of socks and put it inside one of those plastic eggs and stick a few of those in the basket. So cute!
- Bubbles. My kids LOVE bubbles! And now that my daughter has learned how to blow the bubbles all by herself, it’s one of her favorite things to do right now. You can put a full size bottle of bubbles in the basket or you can find really cute Easter themed bubbles (I found some that look like Peeps!).
- Animal figurines. My son loves dinosaurs right now so I picked up a few plastic dinos at Wal-Mart for a dollar a piece. Total steal!
- Crayons, markers or paint. You can’t go wrong putting a pack of crayons in an Easter basket. Throw in a couple of coloring books from the dollar store and you’re good to go!
- Stickers. My daughter FLIPS OUT about stickers. She’ll put them on anything and everything. I try to limit her sticker addiction to special occasions because I know it’s a treat for her.
- Play-doh. What kid doesn’t like play-doh? Stick a couple of the mini tubs in the basket for a pop of color and some fun sensory play.
- Sunglasses. Spring time calls for sunshine and warmer temps. Protect your kiddos peepers with a cute pair of toddler sunnies.
- Healthy snacks. There’s nothing more exciting to a kid than finding treats in their basket. So instead of filling them with candy, I’ll put a couple of granola bars or natural fruit snacks in there to give them a fun treat to enjoy.
That’s just a sampling of all the fun and creative ways you can fill up an Easter basket without loading it down with sugar. What kid wouldn’t want to get a basket full of fun? I know a few mamas who put a swimsuit and flip-flops in their kids basket to sort of usher in the warmer temperatures. There are so many unique and creative ways to fill up a basket without resorting to sweets!
And just for kicks, here’s a BONUS LIST of non-candy things you can put in those little plastic eggs to make the Easter egg hunt sugar-free:
- Mini erasers
- Mini nail polishes
- Chex Mix
- Lip gloss
- Army men
- Hair bows or clips
- Silly putty
- Yogurt bites
- Rubber balls
- Finger puppets
- Temporary tattoos
- Puffs (rice puffs for toddlers)
- A dollar
- Packet of seeds to plant
- Magic “growing” figure (dinosaur, snake, bug)
- Mini stamps
What other fun and creative things do you put in your kids Easter baskets?