What are your birthday present tips?

(27 Posts)
Afiwo Tue 01-Oct-19 11:20:29

Hi all,

I'd love some tips!

Reception has started and so has the onslaught of birthday parties 🥳 I'm wondering what everyone does about presents. Obviously we don't know these children yet so don't really know what they are into, I want to avoid reaching out to 29 sets of parents to find out what their child might like. I also don't want to end up spending £100s on presents over the year. That said, I do care about presents and like to be thoughtful about what we give as gifts, I don't want to give tat 😊

How do the most experienced amongst you deal with present giving?

Many thanks!

OP’s posts: |
FrannySalinger Tue 01-Oct-19 11:21:34

Books. Always books.

ILiveInSalemsLot Tue 01-Oct-19 11:23:46

I find not many people give books so I usually buy a book and put £5 in the card.
Ryman also do fab art sets in a wooden box for a good price.

TheTurn0fTheScrew Tue 01-Oct-19 11:27:33

I have become quite jaded on this one, and resorted early with DC2 to cash in a card, to avoid giving something not quite right.

I appreciate if money is tight this might not be an option, in which case I have yet to meet a small child who would not be thrilled with a box of maltesers and a small pack of lovely brand new felt tips.
<would quite like that now at 41>

Afiwo Tue 01-Oct-19 15:50:30

Thanks all, helpful. I also thought books were a failsafe option!

OP’s posts: |
BottleOfJameson Thu 03-Oct-19 12:39:49

Get a big book people collection (Dr Seuss might be nice for reception age, there are also lego books etc etc) then just choose one for each birthday that comes up. If you want to add a little extra thing you could get a cat's cradle or small wooden toy too.

merryhouse Thu 03-Oct-19 13:00:47

I used to buy little bits of stationery (though I realised eventually that my sons were a lot less excited about stationery than I was...). A character pen/pencil/ruler/notebook set doesn't cost much.

I don't think I ever gave books to classmates - too much of a minefield over differing reading levels!

Pretty sure I once gave a box of Maltesers.

(I've spent my life being more or less socially clueless so take this with a pinch of salt) I wouldn't bother adding extra money if you've got something wrapped.


PoohBearsHole Thu 03-Oct-19 13:03:23

Tiger (the shop) can be your friend - lots of arty craft stuff. Or a book.

Bbq1 Thu 03-Oct-19 13:08:09

Colouring books and felts
Craft kit
Stationery set

Enjoy the ease of present buying while your dc is so young, its gets much harder once they get to 9 or 10!

ArfArfBarf Thu 03-Oct-19 13:09:12

Small Lego set

evilharpy Thu 03-Oct-19 13:19:35

I often give something related to drawing or colouring in, so a packet of decent markers/twistables/pencils and a colouring book or sketch pad.

Afiwo Thu 03-Oct-19 13:35:01

These are great! Thanks all.

OP’s posts: |
Bear2014 Thu 03-Oct-19 15:09:16

Books here too. We try to avoid obvious ones, ie Julia Donaldson etc so go for something a bit lesser known. Stationery works well too, or a nice set of colouring pens. We try to avoid toys for two reasons - adding to the plastic mountain and in case it's not their thing/ a duplicate.

MatchaMuffin Thu 03-Oct-19 17:40:24

Craft stuff like Shrinkles, small Hama bead sets.

I tend to avoid books for younger children since so many people give out books instead of party bags. You know they only spent £1 on it from a book people set, but handing over one or two books for a gift and coming home with another in return feels not quite right. We absolutely do buy books or book tokens for older children when we know their taste.

Spied Thu 03-Oct-19 17:47:01

Slime/clay sets to the children with parents you do not like much😉
We go down the pencil case/pens route too.

Normandy144 Thu 03-Oct-19 17:59:55

I try to opt for gifts that disappear or have some usefulness and/or longevity to them.
The biggest hit by far was bath bombs, i buy a nice colourful one in an interesting shape from Lush and it always goes down well.
Sweets/chocolate is also good.
A t-shirt for summer time birthdays is good or some kind of accessory eg. Sunglasses, hair accessories, hats, gloves etc.
Books and book tokens are good too.
I also recommend the usborne sticker books and travel activity pads which are good for birthdays in the spring and summer as people can use them if they are travelling on holiday.

Shortandsweet20 Thu 03-Oct-19 18:09:34

You can order sets of 10 books for £10 from the book people. You could just order those and give one a time? Works our £1 each then 🙂

BubblesBuddy Thu 03-Oct-19 21:09:43

Do you think your DC will go to 29 parties? I would have to start saying “no” and send regrets.

Oriunda Fri 04-Oct-19 03:45:50

Cash in an envelope. Most people give £5 or £10. When you’re hosting all class parties you do not want 30 loads of books/stickers etc.

Thankfully those days are nearly over, but when opening presents I sit with a notepad and make a list of what everyone gave, tick off when they’ve been thanked. Also handy for ensuring that any regifts (one year we got 3 identical sets of Minion figures) don’t get regifted back to the giftor!

amy1008 Fri 04-Oct-19 06:11:40

I'm new to the birthday party thing. Just want to know when do people stop inviting the whole class, thanks

Aprillygirl Fri 04-Oct-19 06:17:29

Nice pencil case, colouring pencils etc. Puzzles, games, arty/crafty stuff.

AnnaMariaDreams Fri 04-Oct-19 06:21:05

In reception Orchard toys games- sometimes in Aldi or a set of 3 to break up in Sainsbury’s toy sale.
Now in year 3 I do a small Lego set but there are less parties!

Igottastartthinkingbee Fri 04-Oct-19 06:29:39

Amy we have my DDs party coming up soon and we haven’t done a whole class thing. I know another of her classmates (reception) is also doing a smaller party a few weeks later. But we are both second time round reception parents. So it’s not a given that everyone will do a whole class party or even a party at all. I reckon a lot of the class will have BIG parties though, lots of very keen ‘first child at school’ parents.

The whole class party thing settles down by year 2. Although the odd one still happens.

OP I sometimes buy those stationary/book tins from Asda. They have loads of different themes (Trolls, Shimmer and Shine, Toy Story, Cars etc) and once the contents have been used the tins are nice for storing pens/kids tat.

amy1008 Fri 04-Oct-19 07:37:37

Igottastartthinkingbee thank you, that's very helpful. I'm a 'not so kind first child at school' parent, and I got 3 parties waiting before half term! I don't want to disappoint dd as she is very kin. Really looking forward to year 2grin

Igottastartthinkingbee Fri 04-Oct-19 07:59:05

😂 I was the same Amy I don’t know why it came as a shock when my first one was in reception but I hadn’t expected so many party invites from people we didn’t know. A party every weekend is one way of getting to know all the new parents that’s for sure!

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