I have a very sweet tooth, and candy is definitely part of our Easter celebration. But it doesn’t go in Easter baskets for the kids. The candy is a family affair. Instead of buying lots of jelly beans, peeps and wrapped chocolate bunnies, I make homemade chocolates and candies for Easter, customized just the way we like them! But they don’t go well into Easter baskets because they’re not wrapped, so we have family Easter trays instead that stay in the fridge or on the counter and come out for dessert or other special times. That leaves the individual baskets empty for alternatives. These are some of the ideas I have that I plan to use over the coming years with our kids (if I pick one of these a year, it will carry them into adulthood, long after they stop getting Easter baskets!).
- Book Basket: Choose a good book and select a few things that go along with the plot or theme. For example, you could give a child Keerthihan’s Kite accompanied by kite-making supplies. If the book you select has a movie as well, you could couple the two together.
- Hobby Basket: Does your child like to draw? Why not give them a basket of new art supplies? Or sewing supplies, craft supplies, etc. This can be a little harder with boys, but if they like building, you could give them things to add to their tool set, or as basket of new building blocks, legos, links, etc.
- Outdoor Fun basket: Bubbles, sidewalk chalk, mini-squirt guns.
- Indoor Fun basket: Small things to use indoors like jacks, marbles, trading cards and Pogs .
- Movie Night Basket: New DVD, popcorn, permission to invite a friend.
- Science Basket: You can purchase these already put together, or design one yourself, taking into account a topic your child is interested in, finding an experiment or two and putting together the supplies needed.
- Sensory Basket: Play dough, finger paints, puff paints, colored sand or glitter.
- Outdoor Kit Basket: Garden planting kit, bug observation kit, birdhouse or bird feeder kit, etc.
- Toy Model Basket: Kit to make a model car, airplane or boat in a bottle.
- Puzzle Basket: You could give a collection of puzzles about a similar theme, or you could order a personal puzzle to be made from a special family picture to surprise your kids!
- Stamp Basket: Rubber stamps and ink pads.
- Collectors Basket: Give your child some starters for a coin or stamp collection, and let them take it from there!
- Healthy Snack Basket: Ok – this is edible, but it’s not candy! You could fill it with nuts, dried fruit, beef jerky and small packs of crackers, for example.
- Sticker Basket: Stickers, pens, pencils, erasers and paper.
- Toy Basket: Small cars or other toys.
- Summer Fun Basket: Sunglasses, flip-flops or sandals, sunscreen, swimsuit.
- Beach Basket/Sandbox Basket: Shovels, molds, etc.
- Drama Basket: Finger or hand puppets, drama script, costume supplies.
- Pet Basket: Fill the basket with supplies to take care of a new pet (e.g. bird food and toys). Then, after your child sees the supplies, pull out the pet!
- Coupon Basket: These could be for events (going to a ball game, for example), or for things at home (movie night, special dinner, private time with Mom or Dad, etc.).
Possibilities are endless! In addition to going easy on their teeth, Easter theme baskets can last much longer than candy baskets and give your kids the opportunities to LEARN, develop new skills, engage with the world around them, challenge themselves and have some family fun. And, if you’re like me, it isn’t an either-or. You can have candy as part of your family celebration, and still give your child a theme-based basket!
Do you have kids between 3 and 7 years old? Take a look at this free Easter Printable Pack.
Are you interested in a Scripture-based Easter journal/activity book (suggested ages: 8-13)? 40 Days of Easter is on sale over at Heather’s store!