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Help a Mom: Creative ideas for stockings

Posted December 18, 2012

I fielded this question from a mom the other day: Do you have any creative ideas for stocking stuffers?

Hunting for stocking stuffers is actually one of my favorite parts about holiday shopping. The stocking is the first thing my kids open on Christmas morning. My challenge: To not fill it with cheaply made toys that I know won't get more than a few minutes of play on Christmas morning.

At my house, we stick to smaller, inexpensive things for stockings - games, books, craft supplies, a little candy, some fruit and, of course, the all important toothbrush.  A favorite stocking stuffer from last year: a Jacob's ladder, those old fashioned falling wooden block toys, for each of my kids, and a harmonica. They all get regular use.

My top sources for finding it all: Gift shops at local museums and historic sites, The Teach Me Store in Raleigh (I know, I'm like a broken record, but seriously that store is amazing), and craft stores.

I'm sure you guys have much more creative ideas for stocking stuffers. Please share your ideas in the comments box below. (If you don't see the comments box below, you'll need to log in or sign up for a WRAL account. You can do that by going to the top of the page and clicking on either "log in" or "register").

Help a Mom features questions from readers every Wednesday. If you have a question that you'd like to ask Go Ask Mom readers, click here to email it to me.


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  • krisyork Dec 19, 2012

    Our last name is York. The first christmas that my husband and I were married 20 years ago I put a York Peppermint Patty in his stocking. Now it is a tradition all 4 of us get a York Peppermint Patty in our stocking. My kids plan to continue this tradition when they have their own families. They are 15 and 18.

  • BaseBallMommy Dec 19, 2012

    itunes gift cards, movie gift cards, chapstick/lip gloss, toothbrushes, travel hairspray, new Hairbrush or comb, pop rocks and old school candy. maybe uno cards or different cards games like that.

  • Killian Dec 19, 2012

    Lead for mechanical pencils or extra pens/pencils for school, clear tape, batteries, costume jewelry, favorite candies, art supplies, hair accessories for girls, note pads, a sketchbook, fuzzy socks, crazy socks, sports accessories...lots of ideas! =)

  • appgrad88 Dec 19, 2012

    Favorite theater box of candy from the dollar store, slinky, fun socks, nail polish, jewelry, gel pens,packs of batteries(my son loves this),hand warmers, favorite fruit or snack.

  • jwstevens04 Dec 19, 2012

    I do standard things like candy, but I also make coupons...for my daughter, and afternoon of painting finger and toenails and doing make up. For my son, an afternoon of going to the park and ice cream....because I have learned, it's the time you spend with your kids that they will remember...not the stuff you buy.

  • NCgirllovescats Dec 19, 2012

    I'm trying to remember what we enjoyed as kids, definitely when some things were wrapped in the stocking. :) Chapstick, candy, gloves, fun socks, paperback books, stickers, puzzles, ball, markers, small flashlight, mints, gum, travel size toiletries, flash drive, candles, post-it notes... :) Good luck!

  • kcastleberry Dec 18, 2012

    I love old fashioned and/or educational toys. Most of the mini items can be found on $1 aisle at Michaels. Mini etch a sketch, mini word seek book, mini games, mini pouch with small colored pencils, mini fun books, rolled up magazines or coloring books, rail spinner (wire w/magnetic disk-even hubbie loves this), Rory's Story cubes (A GREAT toy!), Bananagrams (AC Moore - use coupon for huge discount), Anything by Bananagrams company(look on their website), card games like UNO & Skipbo, etc.,yoyo's,hand buzzers, Flarp, Lindor truffles, Nerd Ropes, mini action figures, trash paks, ear buds. I love Five Below for great stocking stuffer ideas. That's all I can think of right now.