(Thank you to Graeter’s for kindly sponsoring this post. All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.)

Christmas is so soon! This year, as I thought about gifts for my children, I realized that there are so many things that my children already love to play with, and other things, not so much. After having four kids and both boy and girl I wanted to share some of my favorite toys from over the years as well as toys we didn’t care for or that basically drove me crazy. From books to puzzles to puppets, here is a list of toys my kids have played with the most. And here’s what not to buy for Christmas.

These are the toys my kids have loved. That being said, every child is different and as a parent, you will know what your child plays with the most. Grandparents, for this reason, I would suggest talking to the parents before shopping. Hopefully, still, this list can give some guidance from a momma of 10 years.

What not to buy for Christmas


  1. NOISY TOYS – Especially when my kids were little the noisy ones that sang songs eventually got to me. Needless to say, those toys never got new batteries.
  2. TOYS WITH LITTLE PIECES – We’ve had a few sets of toys that have really small pieces. Guess who ended up cleaning up those small pieces? Not the kids. And guess where most of those pieces end up? Yup, the trash.
  3. BIG TOYS – This may or may not be a concern but we do not have room in our house for another dollhouse, kitchen, or large Batman castle. While I think these toys are really fun definitely consider the space you will keep it after purchase the ng said toy.
  4. BRAND SPECIFIC TOYS  – This one is mostly for grandparents. Check with parents to find out the child’s favorite shows or brands. My kids have never got into Paw Patrol whereas I have friends whose kids LOVE that show. If you have the chance, play into the child’s interest.
  5. MESSY TOYS – I know slime is all the rage and playdough is classic but deeply consider scraping that stuff out of your carpet with a fork before you buy it this year.
  6. TOYS NOT APPROPRIATE FOR THEIR AGE – The best gifts are a gift the child will love but is also age appropriate. For example, my sons all want iPhones. Im not buying a six-year-old a phone, especially a smartphone just so it can get broken or stolen. No judgment if you decide to do so, but just consider what children want for Christmas is not always the winner.


  1. LEGOS – Legos are loved by all of my kids. They’ll literally spend hours working on their creations. We just got the LEGO Friends Snow Resort Off-Roader to give to my daughter for Christmas. Here’s a fun video about skiing manners for your Lego guys to keep in mind. And for my boys they have Ninjago, Star Wars, and Mincraft sets.
  2. PUZZLES – This is always a fun idea because you can get a puzzle for almost any age kid and according to their interests. I’m personally excited to give my kids this Safari Wooden Animal puzzle. I know they’ll love it. Oh, and use code canaryjane at checkout for 20% off your purchase from   Petit Collage who has several puzzel and memory games for younger kids.
  3. CARS – Having three boys we have had our share of cars. When they are younger (under 6) they really loved the simple matchbox cars. This year we are also trying out an inductive car which is the ones that follow the drawn line. And now that they are older we have got into remote control cars. Just remember if you get these to buy batteries.
  4. FUN TABLEWEAR – This is a great present for toddlers and babies. You may want to ask the parent if you are a grandparent what they may need. I would recommend looking at Nuby’s Fun tableware.
  5. PUPPETS – Cate & Levi’s Puppet Collection is something you’ve gotta know about. The puppets are made of reclaimed wood and are so well-crafted. They’re just beautiful. My kids love getting out a sheet and stringing it between two chairs and putting on a puppet show. If you want a fun craft to do with the kids you can print my animal puppets here for free!
  6. BOOKS  – I’m someone who believes you can never have enough books. So getting books is always a practice in our home. Here are some of our favorites if you need ideas:
    1. Skippy Jon Jones
    2. Pigeon Series
    3. Pete the Cat
    4. Where the Wild Things Are
    5. You are Special
    6. Trumpet of the Swan
    7. Stuart Little
    8. Harry Potter Series
  7. COLORING BOOKS –   If you are LDS we wanted to share our very own coloring book illustrated by me, Natashia,  called Color the Temples Coloring Book . This is a great gift for kids in church.
  8. ART SUPPLIES – Going along with number 7, some of my favorite things to get for my kids are art supplies. They may make some mess but at least they’re not asking for screen time. And as an artist, I love that they are cultivating their creativity. One year I bought a bin and filled it with paint, paint brushes, crayons, paper, and fun scissors. My kids have loved it since.
  9. DRESS UP CLOTHES – Since having a girl I’ve found she loves to dress up! A great place to look for any kind of dress-up clothes. The dress pictured above is from Little Adventures.
  10. A NOVEL TREAT – Something really fun to get for kids around Christmas is a special yummy treat. We like to get specialty candies or special ice cream. This year we have got a few pints of Graeters ice cream, which is amazing!!! They have seasonal flavors of peppermint and cinnamon that taste amazing. Getting a special treat is great too because its one less toy sitting around after the season. And you can use code , “canary-sweets” for $5 off your next Graeters Ice Cream purchase.


What not to buy for Christmas
My kids love these Pal mismatched socks!

What not to buy for Christmas

And with that, I want to say that’s really the best advice I can give is to buy what the kid’s interests are. If your child is artistic get the art set. If your daughter loves cars get the matchbox cars. So my list is merely a guideline. No judgment if you break every single rule! This is simply what has worked for me. I would love to hear your child’s favorite toys. Comment below on what to or not to buy for Christmas. Merry Christmas!


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