Birthday Gifts for a 7 Year Old Boy During a Pandemic

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Has anyone else had to completely rethink birthdays and gifts during this pandemic?

We have been slowly transitioning to gifting more experiences as gifts, but this current pandemic has thrown me for a loop with my soon to be seven year old son's birthday.

I was gearing up to throw a big party for him, one where he could invite his whole class, and we had already talked themes and activities because there is nothing my six year old loves more than a celebration. Once we realized that a birthday party wasn't in the cards, we pivoted to contemplating an overnight stay at a fancy hotel here, he also loves the hotel life. Then we went into lockdown, which will last until midnight on June 1st here in Singapore, so we had to adjust the plan once more. Now, we are celebrating at home with a movie marathon and all his favorite junk food.

If we had done a party or the hotel stay that would have been the bulk of his gift, with something smaller from us, but since those plans changed he'll be getting more gifts than experiences and here's where we ended up.

I should add a disclaimer, I am one of those people who wants to feel like I'm spending my money on things that have some longevity and offer hours of play. One of my least favorite things is buying toys that never get used, or that are only used once and then never looked at again, so I try to be more thoughtful in the gifts we give our kids. We also have grandparents who love to give gifts, so some of these will be given by them.

1- Playmobil Furnished School Building- Playmobil has been the most played with toy at our house during lockdown. We have this Police Headquarters with Prison and it has led to so much imaginative play. The school and airports sets have been on his wish list, so wishes granted!

**If you've never played with Playmobil before I would say there are a couple of things to note- 1) set up requires some time- it comes with a lot of pieces and instructions to build which I actually like because you are getting a building situation as well as play after the fact but it will require some parental assistance and a chunk of time 2) Save the instructions so that you can rebuild sets and be prepared with a bin to corral the small pieces when they are not in use. We like these clear IKEA bins. 3) The Playmobil website often has deals on bundles and special exclusive sets. 4) These toys are really well made and last for years- my mom still has sets from our childhood.

2- Anatomicum - The newest addition in the Welcome to the Museum series is as well done as its predecessors, it's oversized, gorgeously illustrated and chock full of information. I love giving bigger books as gifts because they are little bit out of the ordinary and invite curiosity.

3- Harry Potter Lego Night Bus- I am such a Playmobil fan that Legos aren't always on my radar, but we have a few other Harry Potter Sets and I like that this one can be played with more after it is built.

4- Playmobil School Bus- I had to get the bus to go with the school, because it opens up that many more play scenarios and how else are the students going to get to their building?

5- Mr. Sketch Markers- will scented markers ever get old? I still have a soft spot in my heart for these and could barely resist the urge to open them and smell all the scents before wrapping them up. I also think these are an excellent thing to have on hand to give as gifts since they are such a universal hit.

6- Micro Sprite Scooter- a two wheeled scooter has been on my son's wish list since he was 5 but he wasn't quite big enough last year for this one. This year he had a big growth spurt and was definitely ready for an upgrade. We got him the version with light up wheels, but all of the Sprites come with a kick stand and adjustable height. They are also foldable which means we can take it on public transport if we need to.

7- Magformer Carnival Set- I think Magformers and Magna-tiles are totally worth the investment, they are another one of our frequently played with toys and I feel like this carnival set will be a welcome addition to the basic sets we have.

8- If I Built A Car- this series of books is so fun. They are cleverly done with rhyming verse and they inspire a lot of imaginative discussion. If you love books that lend themselves to supplemental activities then this this is a series to look at. My son has If I Built A School so this one and If I Built a House are both on his book wish list.

If you've been following us for a while you know that balloons and some happy decor are always part of how we celebrate, I also like to keep banners on hand, as well as a collection of birthday decorating ideas. I've collected some favorite inspiration on our pinterest board if you're interested.


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