Do you enjoy putting together Easter Baskets for your kids but don’t feel like filling them up with sugar? You’re not alone! A little candy is okay, but my kids don’t need any more help in the hyper department. My son is super petite, it feels like an ounce of sugar goes straight into his bloodstream. I’m serious, 5 minutes after he’s had something sugary he is bouncing off the walls!
Easter baskets are fun, but this year, I don’t want to take away from the true meaning of Easter and I’ve been working on taming the clutter this year, so I don’t want to give my kids a bunch of trinkety toys that will end up lost, broken and forgotten in a week. I want to give them something that will last. I want to give them memories.
When we do things together we make memories, and memories last far longer than any toy. I would like to encourage you to use this Easter to be different. Remember what it’s really about and then think about your kids and what kinds of things they might enjoy doing. Think of something that will have a lasting impression on them. Here are some things you can give instead:
1. Give an Experience
This is probably my favorite thing to give. Find something you can do with your child like bowling, a dinner date, play a board game etc. See some of my ideas below or pin it for later 🙂
Giving something that you can do together is such a good way to connect with your kids one-on-one. Giving an experience will create unforgettable memories and those mean far more than any toy.
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2. Give of Your Time
This may sound silly, but it’s a good one. It goes along with the experience idea pretty well. Giving of our time is a big deal. Sometimes I find myself wrapped up in everything I’m doing and forget about what’s important. My job is to be a parent. A present parent. This doesn’t have to be something that is spoken about, just block out time in your calendar and practice being present with your child. This is one of the best gifts you can give this Easter.
Have conversations about life, what they did at preschool, how the middle school dance was, how they are handling the teacher they can’t stand in college, etc. Just make sure to shut off all distractions, put away your phone and be present.
I feel this one weighing heavy on my heart this year, I’ve been a little wrapped up in trying to get my blog up and running and I’ve lost my focus. I’m blocking out more time in my day to be present and saving all the other stuff for later.
Try it with me and let me know what you think.
3. Cook/Bake Together
Cooking or baking together is something that will last longer than any toy. It’s an experience that will stay with your kids forever. I promise your kids will look back on these times with fond memories. My mom likes to tell of the time that I was helping make cookies and accidentally added a whole bunch of salt! She desperately tried to scoop the salt out but to no avail. To this day we still talk about the “salt cookies” I helped make. There isn’t a childhood toy that had that kind of impression.
Put some cooking utensils and maybe a measuring cup or two, some flour, sugar, cocoa powder, etc. in your child’s basket. If you don’t like to bake, put a box of brownie mix in there. Spend some time making them together. Block out time for this and make sure it happens.
4. Educational Apps
I don’t love electronics, I feel that they take away from face-to-face interactions way too much, but for many things they can be so helpful. Put a picture of an app you’ve purchased in your child’s Easter basket. I have a lot of free app on my iPad, so when I pay for an app, it’s a big deal. Do your research and find a good one worth spending money on. Get Epic and Audible are good book apps.
5. Non-toy Ideas
I would rather give my kids something they can use later than something they are going to play with once or twice and forget about. Gifts don’t always have to be toys! Here are some non-toy gifts you could give this Easter:
- bath toys or washable paint pens
- coloring books
- character Bandaids
- fun drawing tools- markers, gen pens, colored pencils, silly scents twist-up crayons)
- hair coloring (temporary chalk dye)
- Pencil Grip KwikStix Tempera Paint that dries in 90 seconds!
- science kits
- subscription boxes- we love the Kiwi Crate!
- Water Wow coloring books (These are awesome for the car or airplane. Ages 3+They only use WATER!!! )
This year, I’m working on a mindset shift, more in myself than anything. I want my kids to know that people are more important than things. This Easter, I’ve really been thinking about what Jesus wants me to focus on and I know it’s not the stuff. It’s nice to give and receive things, but we are relational beings and being present with one another is more important than anything.
Obviously, if you are reading this, you too are trying to find a way to give something to your kids this Easter that goes beyond plastic and sweets. Hopefully, we can set the tone this Easter to be more present with your children and make some lasting memories instead.
I’m curious, have you ever given something in your child’s Easter basket that wasn’t a toy or candy? If so, what did you give?
Have you had a mindset shift, do you want to give something that will last? There is only one thing that will last forever. It will last longer than this Earth and it’s a relationship with the one who made it.
Feel free to stop reading at any time, but if there is an ounce of your being that is curious, go to church this Easter and see what it’s all about.
It’s easy to see that we are all broken, but sometimes it’s hard to accept that we are in need of a Savior. Easter is a story of redemption. We didn’t deserve to be saved, but even so, Jesus came to Earth to die for our sins so that through repentance and baptism we could be forgiven and live forever.
Maybe this isn’t something you believe, and that’s okay. Just know that with God, your life could be vastly different. Even if you feel you are lost beyond repair, I promise you are never too far gone.
Easter is pretty special for our family. We enjoy spending time together and remembering what Jesus did for us on the cross. I hope you have a happy Easter!