Holiday Gift Guide 2017 – Gifts for 6-8 Year Olds

If you’re having trouble finding Fingerlings (or whatever the hottest toy of the year is now…I can’t keep up…lol), here are some other gift ideas for 6-8 year olds that will definitely cost you less!  (Any purchases made through the following affilate links provide a small compensation to this blog. Thank you for supporting PGM!)

 

 

If the weather is chilly where you are, and your child is obsessed with blankets and sleeping bags (maybe that’s just my son…), these Snuggie Tails blankets are so cute!

 

 

For something the whole family can enjoy, board games like Sorry, Pie Face, and Uno Attack are engaging and easy enough for young kids to play.

 

 

 

Crafts and Art Supplies are always a big hit at my house. My 6 year old is interested in making paper airplanes now. We also need to replenish markers around this time of year, and Crayola Silly Scents are a fun alternative to traditional markers.

 

 

 

If you’re looking for something more educational, fact books are perfect for those kids who constantly ask “Why?” And a good refresher for adults (like myself) who don’t really know…hahaha. Mad Libs are a fun way to work on grammar rules (what is a noun?, etc) without your child realizing it. They make a great stocking stuffer, too!

 

 

Check out other posts in this year’s Holiday Gift Guide series:

{This post is not sponsored by any company or Amazon. It does contain affiliate links to Amazon.com. Purchases made through these links support The Practically Green Mom Blog. Please see my disclosure policy for my information.}

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 – Toddlers and Preschoolers

Toddlers and Preschoolers love to explore new things, and they learn about their world through play! Here are some fun gift ideas for your favorite 2-5 year old! (Any purchases made through the following affilate links provide a small compensation to this blog. Thank you for supporting PGM!)

A play kitchen is the quintessential toy for any young child. I know my sister and I spent hours playing with ours, and my two year old son is getting one this year! Don’t forget the pots and pans, plates and silverware, and some pretend food for your little chef to serve!

 

 

Got a little one who loves to watch you work with tools (and probably try to “help” too)? Get them their very own tool bench, and watch them learn motor skills, hand-eye coordination and more in a safe environment.

 

 

 

Another great gift to promote motor skills, hand-eye coordination and problem solving are the classic Lego Duplo sets. Both my boys (2 and 6) play with these on a regular basis, and I love that they’re large enough that I don’t have to worry about them being a choking hazard.  (Unlike the tiny little Lego sets my older son has started getting into…so. many. little. pieces!)

 

 

Looking for something a bit more artsy?  Play-Doh is fun for busy hands that like to get a little messy!  Bonus: The little tubs make great stocking stuffers!

 

 

 

If you’re feeling nostalgic, Fisher-Price has a line of “classic” toys that I remember from my own childhood.  My 2 year old got this cash register as a birthday gift, and it’s easily one of his favorites!

 

 

Check out other posts in this year’s Holiday Gift Guide series:

{This post is not sponsored by any company or Amazon. It does contain affiliate links to Amazon.com. Purchases made through these links support The Practically Green Mom Blog. Please see my disclosure policy for my information.}

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 – White Elephant Gifts

Attending a White Elephant party this holiday season, and need a gift fast? Check out these fun ideas from Amazon! (Any purchases made through the following affilate links provide a small compensation to this blog. Thank you for supporting PGM!)

Crafting with Cat Hair: Cute Handicrafts to Make with Your Cat – Who knew all the pesky cat hair that sticks to your clothes could be so versatile?!

 

 

 

Bag of Unicorn Farts (Cotton Candy) – Gluten free, produced by free-range unicorns! For a more seasonal option, try Reindeer Farts (Peppermint flavored Cotton Candy)!

 

 

 

Accoutrements Handicorn – Does your hand lack a certain majestic quality? Then turn it into a unicorn! (Also available in a variety of other animals…maybe you prefer a cat, a pug, or a squirrel?)

 

 

 

Chia Pet Bob Ross – Chia Pets are classic gag gifts, in my opinion. You can’t really go wrong with this one.

 

 

 
Check out other posts in this year’s Holiday Gift Guide series:

{This post is not sponsored by any company or Amazon. It does contain affiliate links to Amazon.com. Purchases made through these links support The Practically Green Mom Blog. Please see my disclosure policy for my information.}

Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo Review

I love trying new hair products, but I don’t have a lot of time to browse the beauty store. And, I always worry that I’m wasting money on something that my hair will hate! So, when Maple Holistics contacted me about trying their Tea Tree shampoo in exchange for my honest review, I couldn’t say no! (Keep reading to find out how you can get a free sample, too!)

Maple Holistics Tea Tree Special Formula Shampoo can help slow hair loss and soothe an irritated scalp. It is paraben, GMO, and gluten free, as well as cruelty-free.

The product has a nice consistency. I didn’t think it was too thick or oily. It definitely smells like Tea Tree, but I wasn’t turned off by it. I use Tea Tree essential oil on occasion, so I’m used to it. If you’re not, though, it might be a bit overwhelming.

I washed my hair according to the directions, but I did use less than the quarter-size amount suggested, because I have a lot less hair than most women. 😉 It has a minimal lather, typical of more natural shampoos.

I’ve used Maple Holistics every 2-3 days for almost 2 weeks now, and I’m very happy with it. I don’t usually style my hair (I just let it air dry), and it’s always soft and shiny after using this product! I would definitely recommend giving it a try if you suffer from thinning hair or scalp issues.

(Please excuse the bed head and the fact that I desperately need a trim. #reallife)

Maple Holistics also offers a free samples program, which gives you the opportunity to try out their products at no cost! How cool is that? Click here for more information.

{I received one bottle of Maple Holistics Tea Tree Shampoo in exchange for my review. All opinions are 100% my own. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.}

Son #1 – 6th Birthday Interview

When my son was three, I decided that it would be fun to do an interview with him every year to see how his likes change as he grows. 🙂  (He was the Star Student of the week in his Kindergarten class recently, and it reminded me that we never did this back in August…oops!)

His answers are in bold, my comments are in parentheses/italics.

  • How old are you?: six
  • What makes you happy?: my friends and my iPad
  • What is your favorite animal?: Our cat
  • What is your favorite color?: gold
  • What is your favorite thing to eat?: anything sweet
  • What is your least favorite thing to eat?: lemons
  • What is your favorite thing to do?: play outside with my friends
  • What is your favorite TV show?: Power Rangers Dino Charge
  • What is your favorite movie?: Wild Kratts Alaska
  • What are you really good at?: Math
  • What is your favorite song?: Radioactive
  • What do you and Mom do together?: Homework
  • What do you and Dad do together?: Wrestle
  • What is your favorite book?: Pokemon
  • What do you want to be when you grow up?: A dinosaur hunter

Previous interviews: five / four / three

Festive Fall Essential Oil Diffuser Blend

This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Happy Thanksgiving week to those in the US! If you’re looking for essential oils to diffuse this holiday, this spicy citrus blend is one of my favorites!

Fill your diffuser with water (as directed) and add:

3 drops Tangerine
2 drops Lemon
1 drop Clove

This blend is safe to diffuse around children two and older, but Clove is not considered safe to use around dogs and cats.

Disclaimer: The information contained on The Practically Green Mom represents the choices I have made to take charge of my own health and that of my family. Statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Products on this site are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using these products.

{This post is not sponsored by any company or Amazon. It does contain affiliate links to Amazon.com. Purchases made through these links support The Practically Green Mom Blog. Please see my disclosure policy for my information.}

December Baby – 23 months

Little guy,

I know I say this every month, but it’s crazy how fast this year has gone. I came across a photo from last Halloween the other day, and you have grown up so much since then! You are louder, and into EVERYTHING! You and your big brother love to play together (as long as neither one of you is touching the other’s toys…”MINE!”)

Earlier this month, you started sitting on the potty (all on your own), so it was time to say goodbye to our cloth diapers. Though potty training is a lot of work, I’m not terribly sad about leaving the diaper phase behind. hahaha

You’re such a big boy now, and I’m excited for your second birthday!

Love you lots and lots!
~ Mommy

23 month milestones (from Baby Center):

Mastered Skills (most kids can do)

  • Can make a tower of four bricks – Yes
  • Can name a simple picture in a book – Yep
  • Can use 50 single words – Almost

Emerging Skills (half of kids can do)

  • Can make two or three word sentences – “I go!”
  • Can sing simple tunes – Not yet
  • Takes more of an interest in playing with other children – Not really

Advanced Skills (a few kids can do)

  • Talks about self (likes, dislikes) – Nope
  • Asks “Why?” – Not yet

7 Money Saving Hacks When Travelling With Children

The following post was contributed by a reader of The Practically Green Mom.

If you wait until your children graduate to go on vacation, you are likely to get a little crazy before then. Travelling makes for valuable family bonding time, and everyone can use a change of scenery once in a while. Travelling with children is always going to be a little more complicated and expensive than travelling alone, but it doesn’t need to feel impossible. Just change the way you plan and make a few extra considerations.

  1. Find Free Things to Do

Children have more of a concept of fun than they do of money. No matter where you go, there’s likely to be free (or cheap) things for your kids to do. Some destinations across the world have children’s museums, playgrounds, and even waterparks that are free. If you spend a few days devoted to these free activities, your budget will go much further.

  1. Buy Groceries

When you’re eating out, dinner for two every night can get really expensive. Dinner for four or more is almost astronomically pricey. When you get to your destination, find a grocery store. Stock up on staples (things like snacks and juice boxes) that you ordinarily go through quickly. Buying shelf stable things like peanut butter, bread, and fruit is always a good plan. You can pack picnic lunches for days where your family wants to explore nature.

  1. Economize on Accomodations

Fitting  your whole family in an entire hotel room can feel like a logistical nightmare. Because of this, you might opt for a suite. Accommodations become super expensive, especially if you’re going to be gone for a while. It might be more economically efficient to opt for a short term rental. You’ll have more space, and you won’t pay nearly as much. You might even be able to stay away for longer.

  1. Buy Reusable Containers

Think of all the toiletries and small things that your children will need to carry with them. Every time you travel, you need to buy more. Instead, buy everyone their own set of refillable bottles. Whenever you want to travel, you can pack from your supply at home and use the bottles indefinitely. It’s better for the planet, and it’s better for your budget in the long run.

  1. Book Your Flights in Advance

Almost every airline requires passengers over the age of 2 to have a full priced adult ticket. If you’re going somewhere you can’t reasonably access by land transportation, buy those plane tickets months in advance. Tickets are always at their cheapest when you book them far ahead of time. As the departure date grows closer, tickets might even double in price.

  1. Take Advantage of The Time They Sleep

No matter how you’re getting to your destination, it might be wise to plan your travel time for when your kids are asleep. You’d be surprised how much time and money this can save you. If you’re flying on a plane, it may not make a difference. If you’re going by car, you’ll find that you’ll be less likely to have to pull over for bathroom stops, snacks, or things to entertain your children when they get restless. You’ll get better gas mileage and spend less on impulse purchases along the way.

  1. Coupon Everywhere

Groupon and other sites like it exist in almost every country. No matter where you’re going, you’ll probably be able to find discounts on things like food and entertainment through couponing sites or apps. Try to make your plans around what discounts are available. You might even be able to find deals where kids eat free with the purchase of an adult meal.


 

While you might need a much larger budget and a much more flexible schedule to travel with your children, you won’t have to wait on a huge inheritance to be able to spend a week on the beach. If you’re thrifty and clever at home, you can be thrifty and clever anywhere.

 

 

About the Author:

Sienna Walker is a huge fan of travelling, both to well-known and famous places as well as to the ‘off the beaten path’ locations. Currently supporting Aubiz, Sienna might often be found online, sharing her tips and suggestions with readers. Feel free to follow her on @SiennaWalkerS.

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