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5 WILD Presents for kids who have too many toys

My Dad was over this week, and we got talking about how much stuff kids have these days. So I came up with some WILD presents for kids that don’t clutter the house, are educational, mind blowing and keep on giving long after Christmas. Plus some little gifts to go with, so they have something to open – because that’s only fair right?


1. Camp Bestival Tickets. 30th July to the 2nd August, Lulworth Castle

I am so so so excited about the theme at Camp Bestival in 2015. We had an incredible year this year, our best yet – we were so absorbed in crafting, making, doing and experiencing and we brought back loads of fab ideas. L is now Science mad and has been making bath bombs and soap after trying them in the Science tent. G treasures the sword he carved himself. The festival has stayed with us and really inspired family life.

Project Wild Thing and the National Trust took over the Dingly Dell at Camp Bestival – a lovely woodland area of the site and it was so inspired. After hearing David Bond speak about his film and Project Wild Thing at Nymans with the National Trust last year, it was so great to see Camp Bestival embrace it so wholeheartedly in 2014. So I am so very pleased that theme continues into 2015… Camp Bestival Goes Wild! The Alexanders are WILD about this.

As well as entry to the wildest Camp Bestival yet, all tickets ordered before 19th December also get a super-festive and exclusive Camp Bestival Christmas card and a souvenir ticket. Numbers are limited so grab this Yuletide bargain while you can.

And speaking of Christmas, don’t forget to sign up for the incredible Camp Bestival Advent Calendar – quick, you have only missed 4 days!

Tickets for Camp Bestival 2015 (July 30th to Aug 2nd) are on sale now via: Ticketline / 0844 888 4410 Do check out the weekly payment plan too, an adult ticket can now be bought at a payment of just £5 per week over 34 consecutive weekly payments following an initial deposit payment. Book online via Ticketline only: select ‘Camp Bestival 2015 – Weekend Payment Plan’.

GIFTS to go with.. torch, glow sticks, new wellies or crocs, sun hat, sunglasses, rucksack, ear defenders, sleeping bag…


2. Books and Stories on CD

You can never have too many books and we love to read together, but with two ‘reluctant to read themselves’ readers, CDs are brilliant too. I bought G a new CD player and a Roald Dahl CD collection for his birthday. He absolutely loves it, as does his sister – she already had a collection, but not much Dahl, so they have been swapping CDs. G has been putting them away really carefully, which is amazing for a kid whose bedroom carpet is rarely visible. This morning I found both kids tucked up in L’s bed listening, just the loveliest thing ever.


3. Family National Trust Membership


This would be a brilliant gift for a families it just gives so much all year round. We’ve had so many great times with the National Trust, on a family walk in Dovedale, Easter at Calke Abbey and toasting marshmallows at Nymans, and finding out what childhood was like for different generations at Sudbury Museum of childhood. Last night Mr A and I vowed to get outdoors even more in 2015, A National Trust membership seems like a great ticket to do that.

GIFTS to go with… – why not get them a gift from the National Trust shop to inspire their adventures?


4. Sponsor a child or an animal


We’ve sponsored animals through the WWF and we sponsor a child in Pakistan through Action Aid Child Sponsorship programme. It is a wonderful way to add to your family and teach children about conservation and children’s lives in less affluent parts of the world.


GIFTS to go with…The WWF send a toy and info thorough the year which means kids get a ‘real’ present too. With Action Aid expect letters from the child you adopt, so I would add a letter writing pack, colouring pencils and lots of stickers so kids can write to the new extended member of the family. My very talented relative Alexia Claire does fab stationary and kid’s personalised stationary sets.


5. Theatre Tickets

Buy some fun for months to come, or a treat for the festive season. If you are near Wimbledon check out Polka, Kerry and Natalie reviewed Peter Pan and Grandad, Me and Teddy Too, both shows continue into next year, and I caught some great shows at Lakeside Arts Nottingham, including Flat Stanley the Christmas show, if you are nearby. Pantomines can be really expensive, and (please don’t call me Scrooge) a bit cheesy, but Nottingham Lakeside Arts and Wimbledon Polka Theatre will give you incredible quality and value for money.


 GIFTS to go with...many children’s shows are book adaptations, why not read the book ahead of your visit? Or a puppet theatre or puppets to encourage a love of theatre.

These are my presents for kids who have too many toys, what would you add to the list?



  1. A brilliant list of suggestions – more memories than things to treasure, longer lasting and defnintely preferable to the tat that accumulates as they get older! X

  2. 08/12/2014 / 8:44 am

    Great suggestions, I really want to go to Camp Bestival! And we have National Trust memberships, they are so worth it and kids benefit so much. There are so many lovely places that are great to visit all year round x

  3. 08/12/2014 / 1:13 pm

    I’m feeling very wholesome indeed after reading your list! We’re NT members, I sponsor a turtle and we’ve been to Camp Bestival several times! I was just actually recommending it this morning.

  4. 09/12/2014 / 1:12 am

    These are great ideas – we gave Mr A theatre tickets for his 4th birthday (among other things) and I have actually asked my mother from National Trust membership this year as I know I would use it with the little man loads

    Laura x

  5. Becky
    10/12/2014 / 7:14 am

    Love these ideas and have done the animal sponsorship before to huge appreciation and we have those Dahl cds and they give pleasure FOR AGES

  6. 10/12/2014 / 9:00 pm

    some great ideas, we’ve had NT membership for the last year and it’s been worth every penny. great places to explore, fuels the imagination of smalls and grown ups.

  7. 10/12/2014 / 11:41 pm

    What a great idea! F has already been asking about camping next year so I would love to do this in 2015. I’m also making him go through his toys and select ones to give to charity, giving to others etc. x

I'd love to know your thoughts!