A Christmas tree isn’t the only sign that it’s the most wonderful time of the year. Stockings on the mantel signal the holidays, too. More than great decorations, stockings are the perfect vessel for gifting small toys and treats to your kids or grandkids. (They’re also a great way to sneak in essential items like new socks and lip balm.) Here are 12 fun stocking stuffers for kids that won’t break the bank.
1. ThinkFun Math Dice Junior Game
With STEM professions comprising more and more of the U.S. job market, turning kids on to math at any early age is a good idea. Games like ThinkFun’s Math Dice Junior Game (Buy from Amazon, $9.99) make math fun by incorporating addition and subtraction in ways that excite and challenge kids without overwhelming them. Clear, thorough instructions help.
2. Honeycomb Plushie From Cats vs Pickles
Your kids’ eyes will light up when they see a plushie (or stuffed toy) in their stocking. This Honeycomb Plushie from Cats vs Pickles (Buy from Amazon, $8.99) is a cute (and safe!) option. Its bean-filled interior makes it super soft, and it works as a travel companion, study buddy, or comfort pet.
3. Melissa & Doug Scratch Art Rainbow Mini Notes
Looking for an arts and crafts stocking stuffer for your child? Try these Melissa & Doug Scratch Art Rainbow Mini Notes (Buy from Amazon, $12.32), which let kids doodle, jot down notes, and craft colorful masterpieces. Each art box comes with 125 rainbow mini notes and a wooden stylus to help bring their creativity to life.
4. LEGO Classic Creative Monsters Building Toy Set
Legos require focus and spark imagination, which is why kids of all ages love them. This Classic Creative Monsters set (Buy from Amazon, $9.99) includes 140 pieces to assemble cute and colorful monster toys. Plus, it includes a bag of extra bricks for building additional creations.
5. Christmas Brain Teaser Activity Book by Oliver P. Johnson
A Christmas-themed gift is always a great stocking stuffer, and this one — The Christmas Brain Teaser Activity Book by Oliver P. Johnson (Buy from Amazon, $6.99) — is the crème de la crème of holiday-themed kids’ gifts. It’s filled with 33 guessing games and 50 holiday-shaped mazes. From coloring to “I spy,” it offers engaging activities guaranteed to steal at least a few minutes away from their iPad.
6. Faber-Castell Paper Airplane Squadron
This Paper Airplane Squadron set from Faber-Castell (Buy from Walmart, $14.23) is a small box filled with big excitement. The kit includes enough colorful paper to create 20 airplanes, plus instructions for folding a paper airplane in a variety of styles. Let your kid get a head-start on his or her pilot’s license!
7. Auranso Breathable Athletic Ankle Socks
It’s hard to imagine a Christmas stocking without at least one pair of socks inside. These Auranso Breathable Athletic Ankle Socks (Buy a 12-pack from Amazon, starting at $14.95) are made from light yet durable cotton material. They’re also easy to clean and feature a colorized design on the bottom — making them the perfect gift for kids.
8. Lip Smacker Holiday-Flavored Lip Balm
If you’ve got girls, you need lip balm. A favorite among tweens is the Holiday-Flavored Lip Balm Set by Lip Smacker (Buy from Amazon, $11). It comes in unique (and tasty-sounding) flavors like oatmeal cookie, vanilla, and mango.
9. Really?! Triple Tongue Twisters Card Game
Getting tongue-tied with phrases like “buzzing bumblebees” and “pick plump pumpkins” is sure to make a child laugh. The Really?! Triple Tongue Twisters Card Game (Buy from Amazon, $12.97) has no shortage of giggle-worthy word combos that are guaranteed to have the whole family in stitches.
10. The Ultimate Skip Ball from Activ Life
Summer is many months away, but it never hurts to be prepared. If your child or grandchild loves swimming, gift them the Ultimate Skip Ball from Activ Life (Buy from Amazon, $15.99). This durable toy makes a game of catch in the pool even better — because it can skip across water.
11. ArtCreativity Wooden Twist Cubes
The best gift is one that keeps a child entertained for hours, like this ArtCreativity Wooden Twist Cubes set (Buy from Walmart, $19.94). It channels little ones’ creativity by allowing them to twist and turn cubes into interesting shapes and color combinations.
12. Life Savers Christmas Hard Candy Storybook Gift Box
Candy canes may be a staple sweet treat to include in a stocking stuffer — but this Life Savers Christmas Hard Candy Gift Box (Buy from Walmart, $2.78) is arguably an even better option. Its storybook design and the candy’s flavor variety (like pineapple, cherry, and raspberry) have made it a classic.
Want more gift inspiration for the festivities ahead? Check out our list of thoughtful hostess gifts to show your gratitude after attending a holiday party!
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Woman’s World.