I am a blog ambassador for Lakeshore. This post for Creative Gifts For Growing Minds has been compensated.
I don’t know about you, but I start Christmas shopping early. I pick up gifts here and there throughout the year, but all of my Christmas shopping is done by the time Thanksgiving rolls around. I don’t want to be frantic during the week of Christmas searching for gifts when I can be soaking up as much of the season that is left. Getting gifts for our kids is usually the last thing on my list. They are easy to buy for and I like to find gifts for their growing minds that I know they will really enjoy. I don’t want to waste money on things that they will never get out to play with.
If you have read this blog for any time, you know that our daughter, Gabrielle has the creative bug. Any time she can create something, she is a happy girl. She can be making a seven course meal in her outdoor kitchen or painting a masterpiece on canvas….. anything creative is right up her alley. When I heard that Lakeshore Learning had released their Gifts For Growing Minds catalog this September, I knew I would find some great gift ideas for her.
The catalog features over 200 products, including both Lakeshore favorites as well 30 NEW exclusive items! When I was browsing around for some gift ideas for Gabrielle, I found three that she would have a blast with for sure.
The Pretend & Play Post Office is the cutest set ever! It comes packed full with all kinds of post office goodies; mailbox, bag, stamp, boxes, envelopes and even post cards. Gabrielle LOVED this. She first set it up in our living room and then, she took it outside to her play house to set up her own post office building there. I lost count of how many packages and bills I sent, but this Post Office was a busy place that day.
This is the one set that she gets out over and over again. Any time she can play office, school or in this case, post office, she is all over it. She will set it up anywhere in the house. I catch her writing notes to different people all the time now. I think we have lost the joy of hand written letters and if this set has her doing more of that, I am a happy mom.
Grandma has received a few letters recently that have made her day. She is keeping them all so Gabrielle can have them when she gets older. I wish I had kept more hand written notes from back in the day. They are priceless and hard to come by these days. Whenever my kids write me notes or letters, I make sure to keep them in a special place so we can keep them forever.
After the Post Office, we got out the Cardboard Creator Tool Kit. I didn’t know if Gabrielle would be as excited about this one, but I was wrong. We had some big pieces of cardboard that were perfect for the dog house she designed.
We worked together on this build. The tools in the kit were great for her. She was able to cut through the cardboard and use the rivets and hole punch to put it together.
She really enjoyed building the dog house, but it took her hours (and I mean hours) to decorate it. She loved this part even more. She added window boxes to the outside and gave the roof a realistic wood look with markers, crayons and water. Toys like this bring out the most creative juices for her. She got to design it, build it and then decorate it. She really got into every step of this project.
Over the years, we have made MANY things from recycled cardboard, but the rivets and the hinges in this tool kit made this dog house so sturdy and usable that Gabrielle is planning on keeping it for a long time.
Lakeshore’s products are for ages birth to eleven years old. Their unique and exclusive products are all designed by teachers to make education part of children’s daily lives. I love that. Coming from a long background in working in early childhood development, I think that is really important. The best part is that Lakeshore Learning is donating $1 of every Gifts for Growing Minds order to DonorsChoose.org, a highly respected nonprofit organization that supports classrooms in need.
And, for all My Creative Days readers, they are offering a 20% off coupon!! EEK! Great gift ideas for growing minds and money-saving coupon?! Sign me up!
When do you start Christmas shopping? Are your kids hard to buy for?