If you're like most of us, you've probably realized that Easter has snuck up on you and you're looking for Easter Basket alternatives because this is a very different Easter.
We're with you, and we've scoured forums to help you find things that could be Easter Basket alternatives. And yes, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has deemed that the Easter Bunny IS an essential worker, so we're here to help him or her out!
Why Easter Basket Alternatives?
Let's just be honest. Even if we did have easy access to peruse aisles and shop at leisure to fill traditional Easter Baskets, none of us really wants to fill our kids with junk, junk and more junk do we? Whether it's junk candy with horrible ingredients or trinkets that do nothing but kill the earth in manufacturing and disposal, we just.don't.want.to.
And we shouldn't have to, either, with all the things we can still find from companies that are doing good things for the earth and for humans. It's entirely easy to still be creative with our Easter Bunny deliveries. Heck, half the mamas in our Mothering forums tell us that their kids don't even know what day of the week it is, so theoretically? You can make Easter whatever day you like!
And thankfully, there are lots of options that are practical, budget-friendly and fun!
Here are some of our favorite Easter basket alternatives and where you can find them.
Your kids are probably not wearing shoes too much these days, but socks are loading up in the laundry like you read about, right? How about making those fun with Pals socks? Created under the belief that we don't have to all match to be friends (what a concept!) and that diversity could actually promote inclusivity and acceptance, these super fun and purposely mismatched socks show kids that we can be different and still be friends. Pals Socks likes to spread the love for each other as humans, and they also spread the love by giving back. They work with lots of organizations that offer give-back opportunities to families in need, and who have the goals of making life kinder, happier and more peaceful.
Not to mention... the socks are just so much fun!
Chalk Of The Town
We absolutely love Chalk Of The Town for every day of the week but especially as an Easter Basket alternative! Instead of filling their basket with junk, you can fill it with fun (and SCREEN-FREE) ways to entertain themselves and make the most of this time they have all the feelings. With Chalk of the Town shirts, bags and patches (our favorite!) every day can be a day where they draw, wear, erase and repeat. Founder Sondra has a huge heart for kids and for her fellow humans, and is donating portions of sales to City Harvest, a charity committed to helping the food insecure in New York City.
Your kids will love finding these in their baskets, and you'll love all the fun and creativity they'll get to express!
ThinkFun Swish Cards
We're going to be honest; all this 'together' time is incredible and OVERwhelming at the same time for many mamas, and we get that. That's why we think these ThinkFun Swish Cards are a BRILLIANT Easter basket alternative. Why? They allow your child (and the whole family, really) to have fun while they're developing critical thinking skills. They'll also work on their visual perception (which is IMPORTANT as we're being told everywhere we turn to be okay with more screen time in light of what's going on in the world) and they'll strengthen logical reasoning too. There are 60 transparent Swish cards and an easy-to-follow manual so kids can start playing immediately. Trust us when we say that it's not as easy as it looks to match the patterns using the cards given, but holy cow if you're looking for a little bit of independent play for siblings? It's a perfect gift. And even if you're looking for a fun game night for the family, it'll work too; just be prepared for them to know that it's not as easy as it looks!
Related: What Is Dyspraxia And Could It Be Affecting Your Child?
OllyBall Indoor Playball
Don't think of them as being 'stuck' inside; think of it as an opportunity for them to have Ultimate OllyBall championship playoffs! What's an OllyBall, you ask? Only a super fun ball that was created to be used INDOORS.
Yep, created by a pair of parents who got tired of their kids playing ball in the house and breaking things, they took the hobby of finding alternatives to obsession and then an amazing Toy of the Year Winner.
With the Ollyball, your kids can kick it hard, hit it hard and throw it HARD without having to worry about bruising (NO ONE wants to go to the ER right now) or breaking windows or making marks on the wall. The 12" ball is re-inflatable and your kiddos even get to color it in however they want to. Perfect for rainy or snowy days, or oh, say quarantine and shelter-in-place days, the OllyBall is a perfect Easter basket alternative your kids will love all-year-round!
Using an AeroGarden indoor is a great way to have kids explore their scientific thinking and reasoning, and it's an amazing way for them to be connected and feel helpful as we're inside. With the AeroGarden Sprout, you don't need sun, soil or even a lot of space and your child can have tasty results in a SHORT amount of time.
Young kids will love watching the growth of the plants from seed to full harvest, and they can observe the leaves and roots growing. This will help them have a better understanding of our nation's food chain, which is super important right now. Older kids can track and log growth--root length, leaf size, water usage and more. They'll be just as delighted to watch their plants bloom and grow too and they won't even know they're learning. It's a great way to learn more about hydroponic growth and gardening, and all of the AeroGardens available yield delicious harvests the whole family can enjoy.
The Sprout will let your children grow up to three plants 5x faster than they would in soil, and they can grow herbs, lettuce, tomatoes and more! A perfect Easter basket alternative that is good for the whole family!
Plus Plus Blocks
This fun creative puzzle set is perfect for Easter baskets as your kids will be able to use the instructions and create their own bunny! Plus Plus blocks are designed in Denmark and allow kids to have 2-D and 3-D creative play. They're made from PE plastic, which means they're PVC- and phthalates-free, as well as non-toxic and biodegradable. PE plastic is what is typically used in food packaging because it's safer than say, some other kids' plastic toys, ahem, and it allows them to create and explore with their imagination.
Related: Round 'Em Up! The Best Toy Storage Ideas For Kids
PlayZone-Fit Double Maze Board
Here's a perfect toy that you can include as an Easter basket alternative. It's a double maze board, which means that your children get to have fun trying to get the balls through the maze, but they don't even know they're working on fine motor skills! And the board acts as a balance board for kids up to 150 lbs, giving them the opportunity to have some indoor fun and core strengthening at the same time. Try and have them challenge themselves with some windmills to include mid-line crossing and BOOM, you've got PE, fun and reading and writing development that no one even suspects!
WeeFarers Sunglasses For Babies
Okay, so how cute are these adorable little WeeFarers for babies? They're made just for little littles, and include guaranteed free replacement for a year if they're lost or broken (as babies are prone to do). They offer 100% UVA and UVB protection and are BPA- and phthalate-free in construction. They're designed to offer a comfy flexible fit and just like the grown-up pairs that are, ahem, similar in style and name? They include a microfiber pouch for protection and an adjustable strap for fit.
They're a great way to remain optimistic about being out and about again soon.
LouLou Lollipop Swaddle Muslin
Oh, how we adore these soft muslin blankets from LouLou Lollipop for your wee babe's first Easter basket. A wonderful Easter basket alternative as it's practical and gorgeous. It's machine washable and we love the original designs by Sonia Cavillini just for LouLou Lollipop. This sweet little gnome themed muslin will bring charming bunnies right to life as they wear them!
ThinkFun Rush Hour Jr.
This is a great game to include as an Easter basket alternative. It's designed to reinforce age-appropriate activities like identifying shapes and colors and gets kids into basic logical reasoning and deduction in s fun way. The challenge cards are designed for littler kids in mind, as are the larger chunky pieces, which makes it a perfect 3+ game for littles who want to feel big. Just watch as they figure out how to get the cars where they need to go and see their faces light up!
Coding Critters Bopper The Bunny
The Easter Bunny is bringing her friends along for the ride this year with this Easter Basket alternative! Coding Critters' Bopper the Bunny and his pals Hip & Hop will have your children coding along with the screen-free storybook on their own creative adventures. They'll play hide & seek as they design endless coding challenges (yes, even your 4-year-old can code!) using the included 22-piece playset. Let them feed, pet and take care of their new bunny buddies as they are in PLAY mode. This is a toy that your kids will enjoy playing with from Easter and beyond as it develops critical learning and thinking skills.
Project Sunscreen Roll-On
Another one of our new faves, and perfect for inclusion in Easter baskets is Project Sunscreen's Roll-on sunscreen. Created by two moms who have backgrounds in public health and education, this roll-on sunscreen was created to be a better sunscreen for their kids and family. Co-founder Rachel Henderson is a native of New Zealand and Australia, and definitely familiar with being safe with sun. She wanted to make sure her kids were using products that were easy to use and protected them, so she and her dermatologist friend Dr. Ashley McGovern collaborated to create an easy-to-use and FUN sunscreen. Yes, you read that right, FUN. Kids actually WANT to put this mineral-based sunscreen on and it's made so that it doesn't irritate skin but instead soothes, calms and PROTECTS skin of all ages and types. We especially love the baby roll-on because let's be real--putting sunscreen on babies is not always fun, is it mamas? Project Sunscreen makes it easier for sure. Project Sunscreen is also cruelty-free and they won't sell in countries that do conduct animal testing. It's a reef-friendly product as it only uses zinc oxide and titanium oxide, and since summer's coming (we promise!) it's a great time to stock up.
It's super important that your kids still get to have lots of sensory familiarity and playtime, and that's why this 8-pod of PlayFoam is a great Easter basket alternative! It doesn't dry out; you just shape it again and again and again. You can form whatever you like and then reshape and that means it's endless sensory play for kids. It's non-toxic, gluten and nut-free, and offers screen-free independent time in fun colors for Easter.
Some of our favorite boots of all time, we love that several mamas are getting really creative and using rainboots as the actual Easter basket alternative! Whether you use the boots to be a 'basket' or you include them as part of a bigger collection, your kids (and you) will love them. Founder Annalisa DeMarta said that one of her favorite things about her boots is that they foster independence in our kids. Kids love that they can put them on and take them off all by themselves (so do mamas).
LoneCone also believes in local give-back and the purchase of their products helps fund organizations in their area that take care of children and families. Now more than ever it's important we do what we can to help one another.
Lovevery Pull Pup
Who doesn't love wooden pull toys that take us back to our own childhoods? Okay, maybe it's the retro feel, maybe it's the cute puppy. Maybe it's just that we adore Lovevery and all their Montessori and age-appropriate toys. Whatever it is, this adorable Pull Pup is a perfect gift for your littles. Made of sustainably harvested wood, it's a perfect friend to accompany all those trips from bedroom to bathroom to kitchen to living room back to bedroom and it promotes motor skills at the same time! Your child will work on coordination, grip and motor skill development but they'll just think they're taking doggy on a walk... which seems like a luxury this Easter for sure.
Lesser Evil Himalayan Pink Salt Popcorn
Of course, it's always nice when there are some treats in Easter baskets too. We just don't want them to be junk for our kids' bodies. Particularly if you are making a few Easter baskets, these are some great Easter basket alternatives because they also can be snacks while you may be under a stay-at-home order as well. Completely organic and made with organic extra-virgin coconut oil and Himalayan salt, it's the fluffiest, cleanest popcorn in snack pack sizes. Just right for Easter baskets or mid-day snacks (for the 14th time) too!
Juicy Juice Organic Splashers
And here's a little goodie that you can let your kids drink while you feel better about ingredients they're putting in their bodies! Juicy Juice offers organic splashers that have half the sugar as other juices and they're perfect for dividing into Easter baskets as well as having on hand while you're staying at home.
BoogieBoard Magic Sketch
Screens, screens, screens. Seems like a lot more screen-time has been almost forced on to us as that's how we're doing so much communicating these days. That's why we LOVE this screen without a screen from BoogieBoard. The Magic Sketch Pad kit will give your kids tons of opportunity to draw, create, write and color but NOT with the harmful blue-lights of screens being pushed on them in epic quantities. Boogie Board is a company that believes in a family-first work environment, and they contribute to their community through good corporate responsibility and citizenship. With this Magic Sketch board, your kids will practice fine motor and visual perception skills and the 'electronics' aspect of it is fun and not harmful for their visual processing. Not to mention, the battery life is nearly seven years!
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