Christmas Hits 2020

  • Emily 

Do you find you’re normally able to predict which gifts will be the biggest hits, and which may take a while to catch on? Some years I feel like I’ve got it all planned–and the kids like the boxes best. This year, they were given boxes and baskets, some more classic toys, and some books. Can you guess the favorites?

I asked my kids what their favorite things were, and added in a few of the things they’ve spent the most time with since Christmas morning. These are a mix of gifts from us, from extended family, and a couple form Santa.


1. Treasure Box
Each kid got a treasure box–these are beautifully made boxes by Treasures from Jennifer. They don’t see lots of play of the small-world variety, but the kids are constantly opening and closing them and getting things in and out. It may be a long shot, but I’m hoping they help tame the piles of small bits around their rooms.

2. Coin Purse
Miss6 in particular is loving counting her pennies in and out. These lovely ones are from Modern Rascals, made by Coq en Pate. Miss6 got the Lemur, and Mr9 the tiger.

3. Reusable straws
These are the straws we use all the time at home–the kids love that the tops are soft, I love that the stem is rigid, but the two parts separate for really very easy cleaning. This year each kid got their own personal straw–just because it feels special (and it was special enough to make their list!)

4. Hot Wheels Track
Ever since seeing Mark Rober’s epic Hot Wheel’s Track, Mr9 has been determined to make his own. He was thrilled to get some new track. He’s trying to make the longest possible run through the house with no stops–we’ll share one when he’s ready!

5. Dragon Coaster Ball Run
This is one I bought for Mr9 last year, and for assorted reasons held off on. I’m so glad! At 8 he could have done most of it, but at 9 he’s been able to follow the instructions all himself and is nearly done building this Dragon Coaster Ball run. I’d recommend it highly!

6. Ballerina Doll
This doll took a bit of a hunt–I wanted to find one with brown eyes (have you noticed that almost all blonde dolls have blue eyes?) and one who still had babyish cheeks. Unfortunately ballet is a thing of the past (thanks covid) but Miss6 was quick to introduce her to the other dolls. I think most of her smaller animals have also tried on the tutu.

7. Geode Kit
Some gifts are joint gifts, some are individual–this one was a joint gift out of thrift. The 10-geode kit was by far the cheapest per geode, and the kids are looking forward to breaking them open!

8. Haribo Gummies
Santa was thinking about school with this choice (seriously) Mr9 got dino gummies, but Miss6 got letter gummies–why not enjoy the flavor of learning letters? I may have a few more bags stashed for continued learning incentive.

9. Fire Spirit
Miss6 identified this one as a favorite–and had specifically asked for “something from frozen 2” but to be completely honest, even though she pulled it out as a “favorite” this fire spirit hasn’t seen much playtime yet.

10. Finger Puppets
The Folkmanis Finger puppets have been a big hit–especially Mr9’s hermit crab. I love how Folkmanis goes beyond standard animals.

11 + 17. Jelly Cat Dino and Tiger Jelly Cat animals are unquestionably the softest we’ve ever experienced–so much so that we gave a tiger to my mom as well, really–its as good a gift for adults as kids (I’d like my own tiger 😉 )

12. Baskets from Maple and Lark
Maple and Lark baskets were a hit from the first moment they came in the door here. We started out with them as storage, and the kids were quick to empty them to use as hats and toys (yep. at ages 6 and 9. I’m pretty sure kids don’t grow out of that). So the kids got some for Christmas as well. They’ve been nests, hats, baskets–these are worth it!

13. Bikeho Steps
Bikeho workmanship is beautiful–these I think the kids will come to appreciate in builds later, but for now, with the glamour of the Christmas tree and more brilliantly colored toys, I’m getting a turn to enjoy them situated just as I like best–among the trees!

14. Glo Pals
SO much fun in the tub: Glo Pals light up BRIGHT in water, and turn off as soon as you take them out. My kids have always loved baths, but now its very hard to get them out. I bet they’d be amazing in a swimming pool too!

15. Ostheimer
Miss6 is enamored with our new Ostheimer figures–she’s been deep in play with them multiple times a day. Our other knight is mismatched to his horse, so I intentionally mismatched this one as well–it works well letting the horse “fit” into other bits of small world play too, not set only as a knight’s horse.

  1. Books!
    Books are an important part of Christmas for us. Here are links to a few of the favorites from this year (as picked by the kids). Miss6 and I have been reading the fairy tales together, and Mr9 is loving snotty facts and What its Like to be a Bird

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