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Back in the day, before children, and for only two years, I put together a Charity Gift Guide for the holidays.

As much as my heart is still very passionate about giving and volunteering, my available time and energy to dedicate to those causes has decreased significantly.  So this year I’m sharing a gift guide about a new area of expertise of mine: gifts for boys!

For those that aren’t intimately familiar with our family, our boys are 2.5 (Josh) and 5 (Jake), so my selections are tailored around those ages.

While attempting to potty train Josh, we read My Very First Space Book a lot, and Josh kept pointing to the telescopes and saying “me want.”  And how cool would it be for us to go in the backyard with the boys and learn about constellations?!  I found this starter one on Amazon that I’m hoping Santa will bring the boys (links are on the images!).

Kidcia Telescope for Kids 

Josh has already been really into Play-dough lately.  We had to get rid of it for a while because he would just eat it.  Now, he mostly plays with it, and just occasionally eats it, so it’s still a semi-supervised activity, but it’s the most I’ve seen him entertained by anything.  Thanks to random and creepy YouTube videos, these are the top contenders:Another YouTube find: instant ice cream!  The one featured in the video that the boys watch (over and over and over again) has terrible reviews on Amazon.  I found the one below that has better views, but also costs a lot more.  Not sure if this will actually make it under the tree this year, but if it did, I think it would make for good entertainment…for a few minutes.

Chef’n Sweet Spot Ice Cream Maker I remember bath times with Jake when it was all about him, and we would play and practice letters with his bathtub letters.  Bath time now is this thing to check off the list and get to bed.  We have some toys in the tub but it’s mostly stuff that the boys play with on their own.  I came across these cool bath toys that are STEM related and I think both boys would enjoy playing with:

Jake and Josh are also really into their play kitchen set lately.  I’m so glad because that was their big gift from Santa last year, and at first I thought it was going to be a waste of money (not that Santa cares about those kinds of things..).  Now I think I want to eliminate some of the other toys in the toy room and build up their kitchen ware:

Speaking of pretend play, I love this firefighter costume and that it comes with a hose!

I also should probably just stock up on hundreds of Nerf bullets for Josh, haha.

Jake is definitely going through a dinosaur phase (we listen to a dinosaur podcast every morning on our way to school – Dinosaur FUN FACT OF THE DAY! and Age of the Dinosaurs, on repeat – he carries his dinosaur fact cards everywhere he goes, and loves his dino action figures), so I thought we’d feed into that a bit.

This fossil dig looks pretty awesome:

These dino eggs also looked pretty cool.  We recently got one from Michael’s and the anticipation on Jake’s face was just priceless…for over 24 hours, haha. Jake also loves to read, so I thought these Bernstein books would be a good cross over:

Speaking of reading, Grandma Linda got Jake some e-readers a while back, and he loves them.  They come with different books that he can select on the e-reader and then click on the color that matches the color coded page.  We have the Paw Patrol one, and the Marvel Super Hero one, but I think this one would be a good addition:Another gift giving idea that Grandma Linda started with Jeff and I is a Barnes & Noble gift card in our stocking.  I’m starting to do this with the boys also, and let them pick a book.  I love the idea of the boys enjoying books as much as we do.  Maybe going to Barnes & Noble after Christmas to pick out our new books will become part of our Christmas traditions!

Once we’re done shopping for the boys, we’ll have just enough for a bottle of wine for mom (hopefully top shelf!), and socks and underwear for dad, ha!

What are your kids into these days?  What are your favorite holiday traditions?