Last weekend my brother announced the majority of presents my new baby niece will receive this Christmas will be quickly, unceremoniously and without sentiment, be donated to one of the nearby charity shops.

Harsh, was my initial thought, but understandable was my reaction on reflection.


My niece…clearly unimpressed with the rattle I bought her from Valencia!

My gorgeous little niece was born in April, and so, reaping the benefits of being the first little girl born into the family, received a mountain of presents. Now, with Christmas looming, my brother’s main concern is where to put and what to do with the imminent shower she is destined to receive. #firstworldproblem, right?!

So I have decided on two presents for my niece, neither of which will take up too much space and add to my brother’s woes, and may possibly inspire friends and relatives of other newborns looking for original, innovative and personal  gift ideas.

Present No 1: A Box of Rubbish

Perhaps not literally a box of rubbish, because that would be a completely inappropriate gift for a tiny person with a fragile, developing immune system.

Perhaps a more appropriate title would be: A Box of Cheap, Useless and Disposable Items?

Materials Needed

  • A box (whatever size you prefer)
  • Several sheets of wrapping paper
  • Scrunched up newspaper/magazine pages
  • Junk mail leaflets
  • Paper plates/cups

What To Do

  • Make sure your box is empty, and fill it with your newspaper/magazine pages, junk mail, paper plates and cups.
  • Wrap the box in wrapping paper. Use several layers to keep Baby happy for longer.
  • Present your gift to Baby on Christmas Day, and watch as he/she loves your present a thousand times more than any other present.
  • Enjoy the looks of gratitude from the baby’s parents as they realise they can chuck your gift away guilt-free.

Present No. 2: A Disney Babies Cross Stitch Height Chart


This gift I decided on and purchased back in September, and have been working on it since then! 3 months is a lot of effort on a present, but I also know my gift is most likely to be the most personal my niece will receive this year, will be useful for years to come, and the one she can keep as a keepsake for as long as she wants.


Despite taking months, this cross stitch kit is relatively easy to complete, if a little time consuming!

My main worry with cross stitch kits is that the characters may turn out looking like facially deformed, grotesque caricatures of their original selves. Thankfully, with this kit, the characters look adorable, and I’m really pleased with the result.


My plan is to frame the chart, but remove the plastic protective sheet from the front so my niece can be measured (when she can stand up!) and marks can be drawn directly onto the fabric. I guess I have the romantic, sentimental notion that, once she outgrows or out-matures the chart, it can be removed from the frame and kept as a keepsake.


My argument to my brother will be that wall-space doesn’t count!

Roll on Christmas Day!

I’m keen to see my niece’s – and her parents’ – reaction to my gift of a Box of Rubbish, and, purely for important anthropological research, whether the baby enjoys her cardboard box more than any other gift…

Any other quirky, unique or downright strange ideas for Christmas presents for kids out there?! Would love to hear from you!