It’s almost that time of year y’all!
(Please tell me you love Elf as much as we do! I mean, it’ll never top Home Alone 1 and 2 but it’s right up there at the top! My kids love watching it every year. Our new favorite thing to do is make a charcuterie board, popcorn, and hot chocolate then we all pile in the living room! I highly recommend doing this for some of your Christmas movie nights this year!)
I wanted to do a round up of Christmas gift ideas for you all this year but I want to do it a tiny bit different!
Since Mike and I own two small businesses, we understand how amazing it is when people choose to buy our products or book my photography services instead of going with the “Big Guys.” I mean seriously, it’s a huge blessing! So while I will link some things from Amazon (yes, they are affiliate links but you don’t get charged extra, it’s just a small percentage that goes to me, so thanks in advance), I’m also going to share some really great products from some of our favorite small businesses! I’ll break it into categories for ya too so you can scroll to the sections that would be most helpful to you!
Before I jump into sharing favorite gifts, I wanted to share something that we do for Christmas with the kids instead of Elf on a Shelf. Mike and I don’t do Santa but we still enjoy movies with Santa in them, decorations, etc. In short, our kids know he isn’t real and was based off of St. Nicholas.
Since we don’t do Santa, we found Star From Afar a few years ago! Each night we read the story that talks about God sending Jesus to earth as a baby then the kids get to hunt for the star and place the Wise Men with it. So all month long the Wise Men are following the star around our house until it rests over the manger on Christmas morning. Of course we tell them that the Wise Men probably didn’t arrive till closer to when Jesus was 2 years old, but you get the drift. They love it!
Another similar thing is The Giving Manger. We don’t have this one yet but I just ordered it! I learned about them a few years ago and I love that it helps instill the idea of giving back into our kids’ hearts.
Studio 331 Animal Tins – Y’all these are SO cute! They’re great for when you’re out and about with your kids and need something small for them to play quietly with (ahem, church). Gunner LOVES his dino box that I got last year! Use code EM10 for 10% off
Verselets bracelets – these are something my friend Morgan (another local girl) just started offering! I actually just snagged some for me and Ellie (shhhh! it’s for Christmas). You can buy single bracelets or sign up for a monthly subscription. Each bracelet has the first letter of each word of a Bible verse. So it’s a great way to memorize Scripture together! Use code EM10 for 10% off
Kids Chef Knives – These are nylon knives that are great if you have little kids who enjoy being in the kitchen. They actually will cut food but not skin. I got these last year and they are a hit!
Washable Paint Sticks – These are really fun! It’s similar to a glue stick but paint.
Marble Run – I have mentioned this several times on Instagram but this is a favorite that we have had for 4 years. It is a great toy to promote critical thinking and imagination! There are a lot of different brands to choose from but this is one of the two sets we have purchased. Just be sure to buy a set with *glass* marbles! I got a set once with plastic marbles that you had to snap together…it was immediately returned.
Scratch Off Notes – These are going in Ellie’s stocking this year!
Melissa & Doug Floor Puzzles – We have a few and the are well-loved!
Guardian Bikes – We got Ellie a new bike last month and it is great! It’s lightweight and is sized correctly. Plus they have a special braking technology that is only one handed so it prevents accidents where kids flip over the handlebars.
Tula Free-to-Grow – this is our favorite baby carrier! It’s so easy to put on and adjust! Plus it fits from 7-45 lb and you don’t need an infant insert for when baby is tiny.
Dimpl toy by Fat Brain Toys – this is a cute toy that is perfect for little hands. It’s lightweight, colorful, and great for fine motor skills!
Manhattan Toys wooden toy set – both of these were a hit with my kids! They’re simple and lightweight.
Calendula Salve – yes, yes shameless self promotion but this stuff is awesome and you can use it for diaper rash or any skin issues. I used all baby/kid/pregnancy-safe essential oils and they are properly diluted for safety.
Amber Teething Necklace from Macrae Naturals – I will forever swear by these! They have truly made a difference in both of my kids and I’m planning to get another for this new little guy. Plus, they look SO cute on! 😉 Macrae is a small business and all the products are made by stay-at-home moms!
Uncommon Patriot apparel and stickers – I get SO many compliments on my Raising Patriots shirt and my Orwell sticker! Use code EM10 for 10% off…and it is good through the end of Dec. However, Christmas delivery cut off is dec 8th.
Shark Steam Mop – It is so easy to use and really does a great job! It only uses water but a fun little tip is to add a couple drops of essential oils to the pad to freshen up the house as you mop.
Papermate Felt Tip Pens – I found a small pack of these on clearance at Walmart recently and they’re my new favorite!
Only You Can Prevent Socialism Shirt – it’s my favorite!
Half Baked Harvest Cookbook – Tieghan has 2 out now with a third releasing this winter. I have one and it is beautiful, plus the recipes are great!
State necklace by The Folk – I’ve had mine for almost 5 years and get so many compliments on it.
Red Aspen Nails – ok, ok so I haven’t actually tried them on myself because I bought a pair right when spring hit and I was constantly digging in the garden and didn’t wait to ruin them a day after putting them on. BUT I have friends who swear by them! They are so pretty and a bonus is they don’t have toxic ingredients like most nail polish. And the cool thing is you can take them off and reapply, you can mix and match sets. I might finally put that pair on for Thanksgiving next week. haha
And don’t forget to check out our shop! We have a wide range of gifts and home decor–both handmade and vintage items! Get 20% off from November 18th-December 1st, no code needed!
Old Man Sullivan’s Coffee – These are some of our awesome local friends and they roast some great coffee in small batches! Mike is a little obsessive about coffee and this is one of his favorites!
Gym Backpack – I got this for Mike last year. It’s a great size to toss in some things and go! The straps are wider too and it is a nice thick fabric, so not the flimsy ones from high school.
Scalp Massager – enough said about this one.
Hodge Twins Apparel – Let’s Go Brandon! 😉
Defender Shield Laptop Sleeve – I have had mine for several years now. This is SO important when working on a laptop to protect yourself from the EMFs that are emitted. They also have phone cases and a lot of other products.
For the impossible to shop for….I have something coming your way so be sure to check back soon! You can even sign up for my newsletter here so you don’t miss it when it goes live!
And as always, you can purchase a gift card for a photo shoot! Just message me here and I’ll get you taken care of!
I hope this was a helpful blog post filled with lots of ideas for your Christmas gifts! Be on the look out in the next weeks for more helpful and fun blog posts coming your way!
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Emily is a southwest Virginia-based destination wedding photographer + videographer specializing in telling the love stories of farm girls + guys—the ones who love adventures on farms, barns, and mountaintops!