December is here and if you’re like me you are still trying to figure out what the heck to get your kids? For so long we spoiled the girls every Christmas. I never felt guilty about that as the only other day we spoil them is on their birthday. The past few months we have really taken things slower in homeschool and just enjoyed our time together. We cut most of our electronic usage by more than half and spend more time outdoors, painting, gardening (in the summer) and let me tell you, I feel happier. My every day mood has improved drastically and so has my eldest’s school work. She is enjoying learning again and I enjoy watching her learn. I am sure it is a combination of things but I truly want to keep these days up as long as I can. So when it comes to Christmas, how can I give gifts that will encourage us to continue this way? I wasn’t really sure.
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When I asked my eldest what she would like for Christmas and she told me she wanted “hiking gear” that kind of took me by surprise. Why? She explained to me that she has really liked our nature hikes at the near by state park and she wants to hike more and have all her stuff with her when we go. This made me think that the best way I can give gifts is to give them practical gifts that we can use everyday AND on our Nature hikes. While Santa is in charge of bringing a hiking pack and other goodies here are some of the gifts I have ordered from mom and dad. I hope it gives you some great ideas on what to get your kiddos. Or you can check out my Amazon shop to see the full list plus more.
1. Watercolor with Me: In the Forest by Dana Fox. This book is filled with pages to watercolor directly on. It gives premade sketches that look easy enough to transfer to water color paper so I can make sure all my kids get one or so you don’t have to paint the book. It gives tons of tips and tricks like wet on dry or wet on wet techniques. Bonus this will give us a great lesson on how to watercolor for our nature journals. I highly recommend this book and I am so excited for this one. I know it will be the first thing we use on Christmas day! 2.Jerry Q Art 12 Assorted Artist Grade Premium Water Colour Travel Pocket Set with 2 Brushes, Half Pans-JQ 12 Professional This little set has is packed with everything you need to take on a nature walk. If you like to paint outside anyway. We haven’t tried this yet mainly because packing for 3 kids is hard enough as it is. The set has 12 beautiful colors, 2 paint brushes that fold inside of themselves for easy storage. I personally would use the left side for water and the right for mixing. At least that is what I will do for my girls. It is all nicely stored in a sturdy little tin and will be easy to pack for my girls. Most of all it is a great price for quality paints.
3. Faber-Castell Creative Studio Graphite Sketch Pencil Set 6 Graphite Pencils and Faber-Castell Creative Studio Goldfaber Aqua Watercolor Pencils Tin of 12 Colors I have good experience with this brand. I already own these 2 sets as well but they are well loved and/or missing. So a brand new set sounds like a great idea. I love how these pencils come in tins as well. This makes them easier to store without breaking and easy to find since they will be in their backpacks. I figured, if painting on location becomes difficult this would be an excellent alternative. These are also well priced for a quality items.
4. Aurosports 10×25 Folding High Powered Binoculars With Weak Light Night Vision Clear Bird Watching Great for Outdoor Sports Games and Concerts So these, I will admit that I haven’t actually tested. I am very new to binoculars but this is something my daughter specifically listed as part of the “hiking gear” she wanted. The reviews I have read were excellent, the price was great and they seem like a great first pair of binoculars. I think she will really enjoy these for bird watching or for watching anything really. My younger two got cheaper and more kid friendly pairs of binoculars which you can find on my shop. Of course this leads me to the Field Guides because what is watching without identifying!
5. National Audubon Field Guides North American Butterflies, North American Wildflowers Eastern, North American Birds Eastern These guides are pretty amazing from what I have seen. All these were purchased used from Amazon sellers. I try very hard to buy used when it is available and in good condition. I purchased the three guides that I know my girls would love. Each one will open their own on Christmas morning but they are intended for them to share and use together. My little two just always need to have something to hold like big sister so its important that each one has their own book to use. They can swap and trade but more importantly, they can learn together. I did a lot of research on field guides as I have never actually used one. These are full colored photos all together to make searching easier. They are divided by types of birds to easily navigate through the pictures. There is even a discription in the beginning that explains the types with small picture codes. I have learned that these make finding your subject much easier because of the way it is organized so I went with these. If they work out like I hope, I will be ordering the whole set.
6. Nature Walk Journal This little journal is perfect for my little ones. They are small and Easy to hold. They are filled with grid and lined paper for drawing and writing notes. But also a few pages of nature facts and tips. These will be great for light weight packing. However, I don’t know how they will hold up to water color so we will have to see how we do with that. I don’t mind bringing watercolor paper along as well. We could also use these for collecting some finds and gluing them in. Either way, these would be great little keepsakes for the Nature loving kid.
7. Floral Embroidery Double hoop kit So these may not be something you would say was for the Nature Lover but I wanted to include it because one, your embroidering Nature! Two because it would be a great handy craft for the Charlotte Mason kid. We are looking for a handy craft for my oldest and I think she would really enjoy this set. I bought a double hoop kit so that we can do them together. I am also considering the Melissa and Dough loom for my younger two.
If you found this list helpful please leave a comment. I would love to hear about some of the things you have come up with for your Charlotte Mason kiddos.