Thursday, December 13, 2012

How to Shop for Your Grandkids

by: Adria Byers

You may think you know your grandkids' wants and needs but come Christmas time, their wants supersede their needs 10-fold, and they seem to change daily. Kids these days are tech-savvy, TV-watching zombies who only really listen to their friends' advice and their favorite artist's music over and over and over... So how do you get this uber intelligent and picky child a Christmas gift they will cherish rather than hide in a drawer or closet? These shopping tips will help you become the coolest gift-giving grandparent ever!

First, the age of your grandchild is very important to determining what to get them this year. If the child is a baby or toddler, just about anything you give them will be okay. They won't and can't judge you since they can't really form full sentences yet. But once your grandkid turns five, you better be on your game. Luckily, elementary-aged kids still believe in Santa...well most of them do anyway. So getting them to write a wish list to the big guy will help YOU at the stores! You may need to enlist their mom and dad's help to give you a copy of the list but that should be easy...just be persistent. Most o f the items on this list will be fairly easy to find in stores since most all of them will be from the commercials they see on TV. If you've never heard of some of the items, Google them. Google is your friend!

Now the hard for grandkids between the ages of 11-18. Expect to spend a lot of money on just one item for this demographic! These kids are all about expensive electronics and clothing. However, finding out what they want is easier because Santa is not involved in the just ask them directly. Again, if you don't know what Hollister, Aeropostale, One Direction, and Sperry shoes are, Google it. Google is your BEST friend! 

Where can you find such items without having to take out a second mortgage? eBay and Amazon, that's where. If you haven't had the chance to explore and use these websites, the holidays are the perfect time to get acquainted. Also, if you don't want to navigate crowded stores, traffic or the internet, giving money is the answer. Hard cold cash, iTunes music cards, prepaid credit cards and department store gift cards will definitely put a smile on a teenager's face. You can find most of those gift cards at Walgreens and CVS Pharmacy. It's convenient since you're already going there to pick up your medicine!

Whatever you do, don't give them that sweater you knitted for hours and hours as a Christmas gift. According to kids, that's not a Christmas kind of gift. It's something you give the child on a Tuesday in January when it's really cold outside. That's when they'll appreciate your knitting, trust me!

Follow these steps, and you will be the rock-star grandparent those kids will brag about in school. Happy Holidays! :)

Adria Byers is the Social Media Coordinator for On Top of the World Communities and its entities.

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