some outside-the-box gift ideas for a 1 year old's birthday party

September 22, 2017

So, you got invited to a 1 year old's birthday party. Maybe you have kids, maybe you don't... what the heck do you buy?! You know that more toys are so very likely to just get tossed into the toy bin, never to see the light of day. Who wants to go spend money on something that's not going to be enjoyed?! 


I just went to one of these myself this past weekend. And, as always, was humming and hawing over what to get this little boy. I am not the best gift giver, and always struggle with this kind of stuff because I want my gift to be well received. To add to that (or maybe where this notion came from!) is that when I was growing up, I had it that gifts needed to be unique, or well thought out, or something unexpected.


So, I asked around to see what other mom's might pick up if they were going to a 1 year old's party, and I have to admit — I am pretty stoked on this list! Because really — will the kid ever know?! We're celebrating the parents here! 




I LOVE this idea! Buy a gift card for a local grocery store. Who isn't going to appreciate that?! If you have a Trader Joe's in town, that's a nice bet, or even better, maybe a Sprouts?! Or Whole Foods? This will depend of course on the family you're giving it to. For me, I'm thinking Sprouts is right in the middle — nicer than TJ's, but not quite as fancy as Whole Foods or Bristol Farms, and in my case this past weekend, it was very close to where this family lived, so convenient for them. Keep that in mind as well — convenience for the receiving family to actually use! 



Wine for the parents of course! But, they probably need it! Give them a bottle of wine to enjoy once baby is in bed! So long as they enjoy a glass, this is a perfect way to think about the parents, when the kid really has no idea they didn't get a gift anyways! Or — if you're so inclined, pair it with something else from this list, that might suit the kid better! 



Buy a gift card for a nice restaurant in town. Maybe something new that you've already tried and liked... maybe an old time favorite of theirs. Fancy or not depends on who you're giving this to of course, but it's always nice to go just a step up from what they're used to doing for themselves. Going too many steps up might make them uncomfortable. 


If they don't have a babysitter yet, and you're willing, you can always pair this with... 



If you know the parents well, offer to babysit their little one so that they can go enjoy themselves! Some parents are really good about getting out and keeping their relationship alive, and some, not so much! This is really important though, because if the parents can love on each other as they did before kid, this can really help their relationship last, and display healthy relationship habits to their child. We all know that parenting can add extra stress on a relationship, and getting a night off to go play with each other is something that can keep that fire going. 



and if you're going to go the toy route.... 



If you're going to go the toy route, it's nice to find educational toys for infants and toddlers, rather than something that will just have them veg out. Have their toy time be intellectual and fun!


I got some great ideas from my poll group, some of which you probably wouldn't expect! Stay tuned for next weeks post to see the list!


And... Let me know below if you have other favorite "outside-the-box" gift ideas to bring to a one year old bday party! I'd love to hear them! 


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abra klinger

Los Angeles, California based newborn photographer, serving the greater LA area. Offering newborn (my favorite!), maternity, kids (watch me grow) and family sessions.


Reach out if you're interested, or just have a question - I'd love to chat! 

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