Loot Bag Ideas
For Younger Children:
- themed sippy cup
- themed wash cloth
- animal crackers
- box of extra thick washable crayons
- board book of a related story
- homemade playdough in a reusable container that suits the party theme
- pail and shovel
- sun hat or toque
For older children:
- design your own (tie-dye or fabric paint) t-shirt, canvass bag, hat, pillowcase, socks, slippers, flip-flops, etc.
- decorate your own mug
- package of markers or pencil crayons
- seed packages or potted veggies or flowers for the garden
- a homemade gourmet-style candy apple
- simple costume items
- a pocket calendar
- gift certificate for bowling, mini-golf, swimming, skating etc.
Charitable Gift Ideas:
There are endless charities that rely on the help of others to function. The following are highly reputable and make efficient use of their donations. Be sure to contact any ahead of the party, do your research and let them know about your plans. They may be able to provide information you can share with your guests, and feedback from the recipients for the birthday child.
- World Vision has gift ideas in their annual catalogue, including sports and play equipment for villages
- SPCA and other animal rescue groups often need pet food, pet beds and other donations to continue their services
- the local food banks are happy to receive non-perishable food items
- the Red Cross accepts donations for people who are in urgent need of help
- many school libraries, music departments and other programs are in need of books, music, instruments, etc.
- A gift certificate from Kiva allows the receiver to make a small business loan to a poor entrepreneur in a developing country
- your local food bank will happily accept non-perishable food items year-round
- Make a palm tree from a carpet tube, a Christmas tree stand and old green garbage bags cut into leaf shapes
- make a large candy cane from a carpet tube, tempera or acrylic paint, a Christmas tree stand and flexible dryer hose (for the curved part)
- use appliance boxes to make a castle or a gingerbread house (like the castle, but use snow sculpting medium as "icing" and apply "candy" made from recycled wrappers, plastic shopping bags, etc.)
- appliance boxes also make excellent bases for mazes, fireplaces and cutouts