10 Gift Ideas that aren’t Things, they are Experiences!
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Do you ever feel like asking your relatives or friends to not give your kids anymore “things”? No more toys to get broken in a month, no more books to scatter all over the house, no more STUFF. You are not alone in feeling like that!
After watching the chaos of Black Friday shopping extravaganzas and everyone in a gift buying frenzy, I got to thinking about some of our family’s favorite “gifts” over the years. I realized that the majority of our favorite gifts aren’t things at all, they are experiences.
What I mean by that is, over the last few years, instead of buying our kids toys and trinkets that they would likely love for a week and then forget about and end up cluttering up our little house, we have been very lucky to receive some trips and experiences that either:
- we did together as a family or
- our kids experienced with their grandparents and other relatives.
These trips and passes have been enjoyed so much. Not only have they been enjoyed when they are actually happening, but also years down the road when little things or pictures remind us of those past experiences.
I don’t believe you have to be a grandparent to give these kinds of experiences either. These kinds of things can be given by Aunts and Uncles (our ski day trip was given by an uncle) and parents too (we are working on an exciting “experience” for our kids this year!).
I’ve rounded up 10 ideas of experiences that you can give someone this year. Or, if someone is asking you for ideas for your own kids, you could forward this list of ideas as well!
10 Experiences to Give
- A family day pass at a local ski hill (either downhill or cross-country).
- A night out at the movies (with the whole works, popcorn, candy, pop etc.)
- A day trip/pass or weekend at a hot springs or mini golf or theme park.
- A fun/crazy activity like zip-lining or river rafting. (check out our family whitewater rafting experience here!)
- A yearly family pass to a museum or science center (fun and learning too!)
- A day or month or yearly pass to a swimming pool, skating rink, community center, YMCA etc.
- A day/month/yearly pass to a local attraction eg: petting zoo, zoo, petting farm.
- A gift certificate for a class to take and learn something ie: pottery, jewelry making, painting, sewing.
- If you are a grandparent or aunt or uncle and you know that the family is saving up for a big vacation (ie: Disneyland or Disneyworld) give Disney gift cards or a CityPASS .
- Taking your children/grandchildren on a trip to see a music concert or Monster Jam or Nitro Circus, or Cavalia type event.
What Kinds of non-gift Gifts has our Family Received?
We have been gifted (in no particular order); a weekend in a chalet at a Hotsprings resort, a family day pass to a ski hill (a different ski hill than the one we usually go to), our kids were given a trip with their grandparents to a big city to see Monster Jam (as well as several other attractions around that city), tickets to see Cavalia, a night out at the movies, a day pass to a hot springs (a different one from the one above), a whitewater rafting excursion and every year for the past 5(?!) years one set of grandparents give our family Powder Passes to our local ski hill so that our family can go skiing together at least 6 times a year.
- Adventures at the Calgary Zoo
- Our Sleepover with Dinosaurs at The Royal Tyrrell Museum
- Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump with kids~ A World Heritage site
- How to Plan Homemade Edible Gifts from the Homestead
I hope this list helps you cross some things off of your shopping list. Please feel free to share any experiences that you have done or maybe that you have given as gifts in the comments!
I’m linked up here: Sincerely, Paula
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