Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Affordable Easter Egg Baskets for Elementary-Aged Kids

I admit I am an Easter basket snob. I dislike baskets full of candy, poor-quality toys and boring fillers. I much rather a balance of fun and educational that's easy on the teeth. Therefore for the last few years I've made Stinky and Blinky's Easter baskets to get exactly that.

Over the last few weeks, I've kept an eye out for items that fit that requirement, yet would stay within my $20 budget per basket. Much like a container garden, I wanted a thriller (big ticket item to be the center of the basket), filler (educational) and spiller (little extras...you know the fun bits). Here's what I found:

Thriller:
Blinky has been asking for a fit bit ever since I started looking for one. I have yet to spend the $120 on myself, more or less a seven year-old. I was thrilled to find these activity trackers in pink and blue at Academy Sports for $10 each!

Fillers:
For Christmas, Santa brought dinosaur excavation kits for the kids. Still on their Jurassic Park and Universal Orlando vacation high, they contentedly worked to free their dinos for two days. Still trying to capitalize on that, I included a miniature pirate treasure chest excavation kit for Stinky and a mini jewel excavation kit for Blinky. I found these in the $3 bin at Target.

In the $1 bin at Target, I found off-brand Hatchimal-like toys in pink and blue. You water the eggs and after a certain period of time, an Easter character will "hatch" from the egg. Fingers crossed these will work as described and not repeat the Hatchimals disaster of Christmas 2016.

At Dollar Tree, I found bug catching kits complete with habitat, magnifying lens, tweezers and net. We're always looking for weird bugs around the house and yard. I'm sure the kids will enjoy getting even more hands on with strict instructions to to kill anything...except maybe tomato horn worms!

Also at Dollar Tree I found plaster Easter ornaments with accompanying paint supplies. Last year, I purchased an egg for Stinky and a bunny for Blinky. These were such a hit. After a few weeks, I hid them away until Christmas when they hung on our family tree. I remember Stinky saying he hopes the Easter Bunny brings him a bunny this year to paint. Can't wait to see his expression!

Spillers:
So I know I would be like the worst Mom ever if I didn't include some candy. Per the usual, I include a hollow, chocolate Easter bunny. I tend to stay with brand names for this one like Lindt. These Lindt bunnies were $3.99 at Target.

Finally, water squirt guns from Dollar Tree. We have a lot of luck with these in that they tend to last the entire season in spite of rough play from multiple children. Pictured are The Hulk for Stinky and Ariel for Blinky.

Cost:
So how much did each basket cost? $20.99. Not bad huh! (Actually, Stinky's is $21.99 because his basket from previous years bit the dust and I had to get a new one. I came across this tool box at Dollar Tree and figured I would use it as an Easter basket.) I fashioned two quick bows with ribbon I had on hand and voila:


Now to find somewhere to store them for the next month!

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