We’re always on the lookout for fun stocking stuffers for kids that don’t break the bank — especially when we’re stuffing a whole lot of them. And we love getting more creative than candy canes and bubbles. Not that there’s anything wrong with them…but we can be so much more creative!
That’s why we’re so happy to be working with our newest sponsor Wonder Ball! Remember them from your childhood? Well, they’re back!
They happen to make the perfect stocking stuffer for Christmas, and a fun party favor or treat all year long.
Plus, it’s kind of cool to see our kids experiencing the same fun we did as kids,opening up that Wonder Ball box, unwrapping the foil, and cracking open the milk chocolate ball that’s full of surprise candies, plus other surprises (like stickers and toys!) depending on the Wonder Ball you’re enjoying.
So on their behalf, we’ve put together a huge list of more than 30 of our favorite, most creative stocking stuffers for kids. Best of all, they’re all under $5, so you — er, Santa — can pack those stockings full of special goodies.
1. A Cookie Cutter or Decorating Supplies
It’s always great to get a holiday friendly shape whether it’s a tree, a star, or a ninja gingerbread man. Be sure it comes with the promise to do some baking with the kids!
2. DIY Coupons
Make your own coupon book and fill in ideas like staying up late, breakfast for dinner, or one get-out-of-chores free card. They go over big, and they cost literally nothing!
3. Crystals and rocks. If your kids are like ours, they’re totally obsessed with crystals and “precious” rocks like the ones you can buy at museum gift shops.
4. Finger Puppets
They’re an inexpensive way to inspire creative play; check out these finger puppets from J and E Learning on Etsy. Great price and kids adore them.
5. Fun School Supplies
Bright pencils, cool highlighters, fun eraser tops or shiny new pens are always welcome in our home.
6. Lip Balm
If your kids are like ours, they can never have too many. And psst…if they find one of their own on Christmas morning, hopefully they’ll leave yours alone.
7. A $5 gift card
Get one for the local coffee joint, the smoothie shop, the sporting goods store, the toy shop, you name it. A really fun idea is a small gift card to the local movie theater so they can pick out their own candy or popcorn for a change while you hold the seats!
Wonder Ball Minis! With 2 Disney surprises!
8. Candy…Beyond Candy Canes.
Mmmm, candy is always a favorite, but candy with a surprise inside? Even better. That’s why we’re so excited our sponsor Wonder Ball is back, with all sorts of goodies for your Monsters, Super Mario, Disney, and Shopkins fans.
Tip: You can buy Wonder Ball in bulk on Amazon, or find them at shops like Family Dollar, Rite Aid,or Party City where you’re probably shopping anyway. Then you can have them on hand over the holidays for for unexpected guests, or all those cousins, nieces and nephews you may have forgotten to shop for. (No judgments!)
9 Tiny Musical Instruments
Cowbells are overrated. Try a harmonica, kazoo, or my favorite, an egg shaker.
10. A Paperback Book.
Hardcovers are too hard to squeeze into a stocking, ha.
11. Cool Soaps
Love these LEGO inspired soaps from Amy’s Bubbling Boutique on Etsy, but you can find all sorts of fun shapes that will appeal to your own kid’s interests. Plus? They make bathtime easier. That’s a gift for you, too!
12. Glue and Baking Soda
Yeah, you know what it’s for. (Do we have to spell out S-L-I-M-E?) And you also know your kids will love finding it in their stockings.
13. Magazines or Comics
With some many awesome options for kids, grab a copy of Highlights, Cricket, Nat Geo Kids or the latest from their favorite Marvel or DC character at your local bookstore.
14. Trial Size Products
Kids love all products that are just their size, so raid the travel products section at your local drugstore for sparkly toothpaste, colorful hand sanitizers, or mini tissue packs with fun packaging.
15. Carbon Order Pads for Creative Play
If your kids love playing store or restaurant like ours do, these carbon order pads will blow their minds. Such a creative stocking stuffer idea!
16. Jump Ropes
Jump ropes are always fun, even for big kids.
17. Temporary Tattoos
Such a fun idea, especially for those picky tweens and teens. We love Tattly tattoos – and how cute is this heart lolli design?
18. Face Paint
Our kids go nuts for face paint, making it a super creative stocking stuffer idea that kids will love. You can find affordable palettes of face paints like these at Michael’s, or on Amazon — you know, while you’re buying those Wonder Ball stocking stuffers. Heh.
19. Bath bombs
The latest kid craze is just made for stocking stuffing! You can find bath bombs in bulk, like these handmade bombs by Life Around 2 Angels, then package them individually yourself to save some coin.
20. Mini Note Pads or Journals
Little hands can never have too many places to jot little notes.
21. A fun toothbrush
Nothing says “Happy Holidays!” like clean teeth. (Also, there are some pretty rad toothbrushes out there these days, featuring all kinds of characters and special features).
22. Nail stickers
Nail stickers are so much fun, and even better, compared with nail polishes they’re no mess for parents. We found these cute animal designs at Land of Nod.
23. Quarters for vending machines
Our kids love to get trinkets out of vending machines on our travels or at the supermarket, so half a roll of quarters would be a really fun, creative stocking stuffer for kids to keep on hand. (Also good if they’re going to do some laundry for us on our travels. J/K)
24. A fun keychain
Keychains are definitely not just for keys anymore! But you know that if you’ve seen any kid’s backpack in the last five years. We visited Kikkerland and found a whole bunch of fun keychains from light-up hearts, to this telescope compass. Plus they’re fun to dangle out of the stocking on Christmas morning so kids get excited by one thing they can actually see.
25. Paper dolls
Print out a bunch of fantastic free paper dolls, like these from Pop Culture Looking Land or the ones from Sweet Paul shown at very top. Add a pair of kids’ safety scissors, and watch the magic happen.
You can never have too many pairs of earbuds, especially when they’re $5 or under! Perfect for stashing in backpacks and car seat pockets.
27. Those Art & Craft Supplies You’re Always Saying No To
While shiny new crayons are always a treat, consider about new paints, pastels, or even (gasp) glitter. If you dare. Then, get a shiny new handheld vacuum for yourself!
28. Pins or buttons
If your tweens and teens are like ours, they’re obsessed with pins and buttons on their bags and jackets. Our oldest kids’ go-to mall store is Hot Topic, and they have a bunch of fun options under $5.
29. Playing Cards
With the promise you’ll teach them Rummy. Or Poker. Or you know, just Go Fish.
30. A Special Ornament
A new ornament each Christmas is a wonderful way to make sure you’ve got plenty for your tree the following year. One mom we know stored each of her kids’ ornaments in one place as they grew up, then when they were old enough to head out to college, she presented them with all of their childhood ornaments as a gift. Sniff.
They are no longer a bad gift — for real! Fun socks are a huge craze and I love these cozy Christmas socks. Plus, they’re perfect if you’ve got a Stranger Things-loving teen to shop for.
32. Hair accessories
Grab a pack of colorful hairbands or headbands, or even a pack of bobby pins, which always manage to magically disappear.
Yep. Just…tape. If you have kids, you know this is a brilliant idea.
34. Fun Bandages
They really do make every boo-boo feel better, which is why it’s fun to give kids their own box in their stocking.
35. A handwritten card
Remember those? We love giving one each year, knowing the kids will at least appreciate them when they’re older.
Thanks so much to our cool sponsor Wonder Ball. We’re so glad you’re back in stores! You can find them online, or at stores including Amazon, Rite Aid, Family Dollar, Party City and more. They make amazing, affordable stocking stuffers, party favors, or just-because-you’re-awesome treats.