10 Guidelines for Grandparent Gifting

Holiday Gifts for girls 3 – 7 years

Well, it’s that time of year again - the holidays. And after last year, although it’s not as safe as pre-COVID, it is still better. You may be visiting family for the first time in over a year and as grandparents, you’ll be able to meet your grandchildren in person again.

This time of year is a time for gifts and the challenge is to choose the ones that your grandkids will love and treasure. Too often the gift ends up not being particularly wanted, not personal, and even, too expensive. So we thought we would give our views on how to choose the gift or gifts that your granddaughter will cherish and remember.

Let’s step back and think about the role of the grandparents (you may want to look at a blog we wrote about grandfathers some time back). The bottom line here is that grandparent have the right to spoil their grandkids and to enjoy them, but they also have responsibilities to help educate them and to provide a fun and loving interchange. Selfishly, the grandparent also wants to be remembered fondly by the grandchildren and gifts should address all these aspects.

What are our ten guidelines for gifting?

1. Make it age appropriate. If, because of COVID, you have not had much contact with your grandchildren for a year or more, make sure you don’t give a gift which reflects what they were like last time you saw them – a little girl who was a toddler of 18 months is now a preschooler of three years and wants an age-appropriate gift.

2. Give them just one or two presents. More is not better. Resist the urge to overload them with lots of gifts which the little girl will have difficulty distinguishing. Many may not even be wanted. Concentrate your spending and budget on just one or two which are meaningful and memorable.

3. Make the gift selection unique. Try to find something that will delight and is different from other gifts they will receive this holiday. Take the time to research and decide.

4. Gift them something lasting. Let someone else buy them candy or other goodies which they will consume in the first day and forget the day after. Ideally the gift should be something they treasure for many years, and perhaps even into adulthood.

5. Think carefully before you gift an experience. Many people think that gifting an experience is cool. Why not a trip to Disney? Apart from the cost, this will undoubtably be on dates other than the date of the holiday and while it may be memorable, it may not be something which is lasting. If you go down this path, make sure it is at least appreciated and memorable. Particularly children of this age, after they get home for the experience, will be ready to move on to the next big thing. That’s what kids do.

6. Make it a surprise. Don’t cop out and buy them what they have said they want. Leave that to their parents. Grandparents have a special place and to be a little mysterious rather than be wholly predictable is a good thing.

7. Give traditions as gifts. One of the traditions that we had when our children were growing up was to have a special tasting menu for Christmas. Dad did the cooking and one of the gifts for the kids was an invitation to the event. They enjoyed the tradition which was demanded every Christmas afterwards.

8. Gift something which is fun but is also educational. One key role for grandparents is to educate. But this is not the school room so it must be done in a way that is entertaining. One great gift is a book which can be read to the child by the grandparents (or by the parents). Picture books are great with the pre-reading child looking at the colorful picture as the story unfolds. The story should teach an educational element.

9. Give a gift which allows play. Exercise the imagination of the little girl. A doll can satisfy this requirement admirably.

10. Keep it within a reasonable budget. Grandparent may be able to lavish gifts on their grandchildren, and the parents might not. Keep to a budget and don’t exceed what the parents are giving. Talk it over with them. You goal is not to bribe your granddaughter’s love with expensive gifts.

Full disclosure now - We have designed the Five Enchanted Mermaids’ line with these guidelines in mind. A great gift is the combination of a hardcover picture book featuring one of the mermaids and a matching doll. Read the book to your little girl, teach her about some of the social skills based on each mermaid’s superpower, and then allow hours of imaginative play with the doll. If your budget is tight, gift just the doll or the book separately.

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Best wishes for a safe and happy holiday, from the team at Five Enchanted Mermaids.

The Five Enchanted Mermaids celebrate diversity in our world and the belief that each child deserves to have a mermaid that looks like them. Through their individual personalities and traits, they weave stories that help teach skills for children in this age group.

The idea for the Five Enchanted Mermaids was born to provide a fun but educational backdrop for girls aged 3 to 7 years. The characters address emotional skills (making friends, resolving conflicts, coping with change, making their own choices and “being good people”) and educational skills (learning to read, the alphabet, counting, symmetrical shapes, time, value of monetary coins/notes) that are important at that age in the development of young girls.

The stories use each of the diverse mermaids as a role model for behavior and values.

LifeMadeSimple, LLC and acclaimed children’s book author, Lois Petren, are collaborating to provide a series of books, party accessories and other appropriate items as mermaid gifts for girls to support these goals.

Visit us at www.fiveenchantedmermaids.com

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