So, I don’t know about you, but I often struggle with figuring out gifts to buy my kids. I’ll research the hot new toys, try to find some cool STEM projects or contraptions to get their minds working, include some of the old staples that I liked as a kid (e.g,, boardgames, Barbies, My Little Pony (although what HAPPENED to them? They’re so weird-looking now!)), and I’ll feel all excited Christmas Day thinking that I rocked the present-giving this year. And then they tear into them, look briefly at what they are before diving into the next present, and the process repeats until it’s just a mound of toys and paper. And you know what? Apart from maybe a passing glance here and there, the presents basically lay in the playroom, unused for the rest of the year, while I still have to contend with the “Mom, what can I do?” whines on the daily.
So this year, I’m thinking differently. I don’t know why I didn’t just originally follow the mother-wisdom passed along from generation to generation who have been-there, done-that: Buy them something to play with, something they need, something to wear, and something to read. I’m going with that strategy this year, and am encouraging loved ones who live locally to give them experiences (e.g., a trip to the aquarium, going to a movie) rather than toys.
And for the present to play with, I’m thinking, if I go with something that is socially responsible, then, even if the kids don’t end up doing anything with it after it’s been unwrapped, at least it will be helping the world in some way.
Enter Cuddle + Kind. I don’t even know where to start with this company. It’s a Canadian, family business that aims to feed children in need. And how do they do that? By creating the most adorable, artisan-created, hand-knit, cotton stuffies. And who do they have do this? Talented female artisans in Peru, who are paid fair-trade wages that provide them with a sustainable income. So each doll feeds 10 children in need AND provides income to a woman in Peru. Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, the price is actually reasonable ($59 for the small and $79 for the large). So honestly, it was an easy decision to buy one of these dolls for my daughter for Christmas.
What I wasn’t expecting though was how beautiful, soft, and squishy this doll would be. Honestly, having had two children now ages 6 and almost 3, I’ve seen loooooottttts of stuffies over the years. But this is unlike any of them. I think you have to feel it to believe it. The yarn is silky but cozy and the stuffing the perfect level of cush. And the bunny is wearing the cutest little hand knit outfit!
Just to add one more cute piece, each doll has a name, a birthday, a “saying”, and a little inspiring info about them. Honestly, I cannot wait until my daughter unwraps this one. And if for some reason she doesn’t want it, I might end up stealing it for myself!