And the stockings were hung by the chimney with care…
As much as a Christmas tree is dubbed the crown jewel of Christmas decor, it simply doesn’t feel like Christmas without stockings either (in my opinion). In our house, even our two dogs have stockings. This year, we get to buy another stocking (if we want one during my pregnancy) for our baby girl. This makes a total seven stockings in our house! That can be tough to find practical stocking stuffers for that many humans and animals.
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I know, some of you families have even more! How do you do it? We all know what gets really old really quick? Candy…and for that matter, candy canes. BLEH! Now if they are tradition in your house, by all means continue! However, it gets really old to have an entire stocking full of candy canes or other candy year after year that take months to consume.
This year, why not include non-candy treats! Not only is it a healthier alternative, but depending on what you put inside, it can feel just as special as getting Christmas presents! So here we go…
The List of Practical Stocking Stuffers
- Gift cards
This is a great place to put gift cards. From hair salon services to Home Depot. They will always fit nicely in here without having to purchase additional card envelopes or boxes. Many places are switching to E-gift cards. This will make sure you are still able to display your gift and that it isn’t forgotten about.
- Lottery tickets
How exciting is it to scratch off those small prize lotto tickets! They typically only cost anywhere from $1-$10 depending on how big of a prize you are wanting to win. BONUS: Maybe your kid will feel guilty since you purchased them. And if they win and maybe share some of the split (good luck with this if you have a teenager).
- Winter Accessories
Great for anyone on the list. Maybe it’s time to replace some winter time hats, gloves, and scarves! Choose one or all stuff them into the stocking. This is especially good if you live somewhere where the weather is more harsh during this time of year.
- Crayons and colored pencils
If you have a little artist, they may run out of coloring materials frequently. A little pack of 10-20 crayons or a 10 pack of colored pencils is perfect to replenish their stash.
- Theme park tickets
Give them something to look forward to during the summer! I recommend keeping an electronic copy in your email or printing another copy to keep somewhere safe. Putting the tickets in the stocking is a great way to announce the fun that’s to come!
- Zoo tickets
Very similar to above, this is a great way to announce a trip to the zoo. You can make this a little more fun by getting a miniature stuffed version of their favorite animal that can “hold” the tickets. If you have little one’s, this doubles as a new stuffy for their bed.
No one said food was a complete no-no for stocking stuffers! Get some beef jerky, granola bars, gummies, and more! There are plenty of healthy alternatives to stash in your stocking.
- Subscription Service
This is a great way to reveal a subscription service that your kids wanted to try. Or if you signed up for a subscription that may be coming in the mail at a later time. For kids, we absolutely LOVE Kiwi Crates. They have different crates from infancy to 16 years old! From art and geography based boxes, to STEM and engineering boxes. There is something for everyone. My son is completely obsessed! For adults, there are unlimited subscription services options as you know.
However, a gift you and your partner can enjoy is Happily! There are many reasons that can make having a date night hard (quarantine anyone?). We discovered Happily during the 2020 pandemic (oh good times…). It was a great solution to not being able to do our fun outings anymore. We have done at-home “escape rooms”, made homemade ice cream and macaroons, learned to dance salsa, asked thought provoking questions, listened to custom designed playlists, and more! It is a great gift to rekindle your spark and we have yet to be disappointed.
- Make-up and Brushes
This is definitely for the older children on your list. Some make-up products or brush sets are the perfect size to fit in a stocking. Just make sure you get a brand that your child will actually use so it doesn’t go to waste.
- Party favors
This is probably my least practical stocking stuffer on the list. But if you are really struggling for ideas, take a stroll down the party aisle at Wal-Mart or Target. You’ll see things like glow sticks, whistles, play-dough and more. These are normally for goody bags for birthday parties, but who says you can’t use them as stocking stuffers!?
- Custom engraved tools
This one is for dad, or even the handy teenager. Many different sellers on Etsy will engrave hammers and other tools with custom messages. It makes getting that average tool a little more special.
They really should be replaced more throughout the year. But this can be the one of those times of the year that you replace them. If you have electric ones, then there is even more space because you can just put new brush heads in the stocking that last for the rest of the year! What’s a more practical stocking stuffer than that?
My husband and I love our BURST toothbrushes. First off, the replacement heads are only $6 each (so much cheaper than a Sonicare or similar), and they automatically send them out when it’s time to replace the head. It gives me one less things to worry about.
- Cozy socks
Everyone likes fuzzy socks to wear around the house. If you’re like me, then you probably lost your favorite pair between last Christmas and this Christmas. Or they may even be too small if your kids are growing constantly! Treat them to some new fuzzy sucks in their favorite pattern or color. There are even some with aloe if you are really prone to dry feet.
- Handwritten notes
Maybe they had extra good behavior, they did really well in school this year, or they knocked their sports season out of the park! A sweet note that lets your family know why you love them and why you are proud of them is the gift that keeps on giving. Children will never NOT appreciate feeling loved. Plus, each note to the person, which means so much more than buying generic gifts for the family.
Got a family that likes to hit the outdoors? Sunglasses make a great stocking stuffer! This is especially great if anyone in the family has lost, broken, or simply has old and worn sunglasses.
- Hot cocoa bombs
What a better way to celebrate opening and playing with every single gift in one day than with a glass of hot cocoa! Hot cocoa bombs are a new, fun and totally practical stocking stuffer that you can enjoy this season. And it will most likely get used that day!
- Water Bottles
This is much better for children who have smaller water bottles. We love our Hydroflask Water Bottle that was given to my son 3 years ago in his Christmas stocking! It’s extremely durable, has a straw for easy drinking, and keeps water cold for hours. It is the only bottle my son hasn’t lost or broken. Adults can get skinnier versions that can fit in their stocking here.
- Hair products
Gel, brushes, combs, beard oil, hair ties…Seriously the options are endless here. You can go ask inexpensive or pricey as you want! I gave my husband this Squatch Brand bundle. It is not only great smelling and organic, but this bundle came with 3 bars of soap, shampoo, and conditioner! They even have bundles specifically for beards or for their whole body. Use the link to get a free bar of soap!
For babies and mommas, I love Earth Mama Organics. Cloth diaper friendly, gentle, organic, and safe for you and baby! From delicious teas, to baby product samplers, there are a wide variety of products that are sure to make you and baby happy.
- Hand Sanitizer
The afterlife of the pandemic means that hand sanitizer will be on everyone’s mind for years to come. Make this gift more fun with colorful silicone sanitizer bottle covers. These covers come with plastic bottles to refill and a collapsible funnel for easy storage!
- Baby Necessities
I saved this one for last because it is so broad. Babies have no clue what they are getting in a stocking. Let alone what this holiday even is. Likewise, I totally understand not wanting your little one to be left out. This makes things super easy to fill their stocking! From bibs, baby food, onesies, diapers, literally just anything baby related. You need it, put it in the stocking. It makes them a part of the experience and it’s extremely practical. Again, we are huge fans of Earth Mama Organics. You can’t beat the quality and price!
A Last Minute Thought
I hope this a great start to get you going! This list is designed to be more useful and meaningful. Not just more junk to fill a stocking. What are some practical stocking stuffers that you fill in your stockings??