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Moms of 3 or More Do you have 3 or more children? Often times, parents with 3 or more kids face challenges that those of 1 or 2 just do not. This board was set up for those parents to ask others how they cope with issues such as making time for each child, who stays u

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Old 08-26-2002, 07:18 AM
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christmas ideas

i need some helpful ideas for christmas. i have 3 kids... daughter 9, son 4, and son one-and a-half. i would like to come up with some ideas of gifts that all three or maybe the two boys could share. for instance, i've thought about making up a dress up kit for the boys with an outfit for a fireman, doctor, cowboy, etc. does anyone have any other ideas? they already have a huge amount of books, puzzles, movies, blocks, etc. i would like to keep the expense to the minimum and i am fairly crafty when it comes to making things. i just need some good ideas to get the creative juices flowing and i thought maybe some of you moms had done something similiar in the past. we have to come up with about 25-30 gifts NOT including our children. i try to make most of them or catch good sales or bargains during the year. thanks so much for any help you could provide!

miranda
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Old 08-30-2002, 09:50 AM
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I bet all three kids would love the dress up kit! How about books on tape? Record ones you already have, ring a bell at the page change, and the four year old will be able to do it all by himself. The 9 year old may even be able to help out with the reading or bell ringing.

My daughter is doing this for her 2 year old half sister who lives in Sweden. (For us it's also a way to keep her voice and photo in her sister's life, and help teach her English.) Include a photo of the book or the reader with the tape. Book covers can be downloaded (right click) from amazon or bn. With the right book, it could work with all three kids.
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Old 09-01-2002, 06:55 AM
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I think that the dress up box is a great idea! I plan to do that when my boys are older! Last year I bought one of those wooden crates that you can buy at Michael's or AC Moore, and used the Michael's craft sheet to paint it as a race car crate for my nephew who was 3 or 4 (and I also gave him a pack of little cars to go with it) about a $10 gift or less. If you're interested in seeing a picture I can scan it in and email it to you. I thought it came out real cute, it did take some time though. Also for the two older kids you could do a coat/hat rack with their names on them (painted or with wooden letters hot glued on) I have a list of things that I have been thinking of doing, I'll get it out and let you know of any other ideas that maybe you could use!
Hope this helps!
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Old 09-02-2002, 01:37 PM
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thanks so much! i love all your ideas and this definitely gives me some great options. if you think of anything else, i would love to hear it!
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Old 09-08-2002, 04:50 AM
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This year we are cutting way back on Christmas. We are doing most of our shopping at garage sales and the Dollar Store. But since we go to the library at least once a week, I am going to get bags with straps on them and have thier names embroidered with a library or books or something like that. It will be something they can use for the rest of thier lives.
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Old 09-08-2002, 06:22 AM
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It may be a little more expensive, but in the long run, it is very reasonable--how about a family membership to a local children's museum/zoo/aquarium, etc? We receive a family zoo membership from Grandma and Grandpa for all of the kids' birthdays and it is awesome! For my family (2 adults, 2 kids over the age of 2 and one under), the basic membership is paid for in less than 2 visits and it is fun and educational for all of us. We also get invited to special Members-Only evening events and previews of new exhibits which are terrific! Our zoo membership (for the Milwaukee Zoo) costs $49 a year for a two parent/all kids under 18 family (the amount grandma and grandpa contribute) but we upgrade and pay $100 to add two guests and free parking to the basic membership. Regular admission prices are $9 per adult, $6 per child over 2 and $6 for parking. We also make a point of not eating at the zoo to save money. The kids get a "firecracker" popsicle in hot weather and when we are there in winter, we get a hot chocolate halfway through.

We also get a children's museum family membership for the holidays. The local children's museum family membership is $60 a year (strangely enough, it takes more visits to "pay" this one off than the zoo!). Admission prices are $4 per person over the age of one so for my family we would otherwise pay $16 a visit.

Plus, with the memberships, we don't feel bad leaving if the zoo/museum in the case of crowds (school fieldtrip days are horrid!!), a meltdown (with a 3 year old, it is bound to happen), bad weather, etc. It isn't like we have to "get our money's worth" because over the course of the year, we get way more than we paid. And, many of these memberships are reciprocal to other zoos and museums throughout the US so if you travel, chances are you can use your membership from home to cut down on your sightseeing elsewhere. But check with your individual zoo/museum since benefits may vary. We have to pay more for the reciprocal benefits on the museum membership but not on the zoo. A side note, we visited Atlanta last year and the zoo admission prices were $16 per adult (I forget the child prices) which would have been outrageous but our membership included the Atlanta zoo.

The kids get some inexpensive gift(s) to open on their actual birthday, but the membership is truly the gift that keeps on giving all year long. We try to make a point of how much fun it is to use the membership all year so they remember their birthdays. And we are not adding more STUFF to our lives. Yippee!! Less Clutter!

This type of gift is also a good thing to ask the relatives for--especially indulgent grandparents.
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Old 09-08-2002, 06:23 AM
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christmas ideas

i too am cutting back on shristmas my children are older tho and it seems so hard to find gifts for them son21 with wife 20 and grandson 1-1/2. daughter 17 they are use to elaborate christmas but this year im not going into debt for the younger ones you have its easier or at least ithink try making each a specail blanket or quilt pillows for there beds pajama bags. dool clothes for the older one and barbie cloothes and furniture out of househld items jewlry for her is still pretty inexpensive and get a heartshped cradboard box froma craft sote decorate it with fabric put in a dairy special pens address book stickers lipgloss hairbrush etc/ my daughter still cherishes hers every year expects new dairy or journal in her stocking!!!! hope thes help maybe someone can help me with the older kids too thnaks
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Old 09-08-2002, 06:27 AM
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School supplies are on clearance at discount stores right now--you can stock up on very inexpensive crayons (including the cool glow crayons and glitter crayons), markers, fancy pens, paints, art smocks, pencil boxes to put everything in, etc., and put together gift boxes for upcoming birthday parties, holiday gifts, etc. No one would ever know that you bought everything on clearance! And it is a "consumable" so it wouldn't be adding to the piles of stuff most kids already have and it will be a good gift to get those creative juices flowing.
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Old 09-08-2002, 10:49 AM
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Lightbulb

Yes I have a few ideas, last year I made my dd and ds a blanket out of polar fleece and flannel on the back they were like lap blankets for watching t.v. or reading on a cool night, I also made little pillows in case we went on a trip in the car they could bring both along, they love them,my sil made my daughter barbie furniture one year a bed out of foam, and blanket and pillow to match, another gift homemade is those polar fleece vests and mittens, hat, w/ scarf, I made a set for my nieces hat and scarf.
Closer to Christmas for the older kids on your list you could bake cookies or make homade fudge or peanut brittlle and you put it in a painted jar, they have the painted jar right her on this website.
Also boxer shorts or just a flannel pair of pjay bottoms go over big for older kids and younger, I make the boxers. I could use some more ideas for older boys too, and my 7 yo dd. Sandy
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Old 09-08-2002, 05:16 PM
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christmas ideas

thanks i like the pajaama or boxer ides i can make those for all the kids i would still like more ideas especailly for a 21 year old son rthey are use to lots of presents under the tree id like thjis to m=be anice christmas but i wan to bring back more meaning less stress for me epsecially financially the 17 year old girll is prtetty eay makeup and jewlry is rather inexpensive but i have hardly any clues for him i am making my nephew a quilt and my niece she is 5 barbie furniture an a trunk of dollcloths but im still stuck on son he is onto big expensive stuff thanks for the help
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