Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas For Everyone On Your List

gorgeous stockings by eab designs

Featured post by Mary of The Encouraging Home

Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but can also be expensive. One way we enjoy giving gifts is in the Christmas stockings.  Digging in the stocking is usually about as much fun as opening gifts.  Many families make this the bulk of their gift giving, with only one or two other gifts.  The little items are fun to buy during the year, and you can buy things your family will need anyway. It somehow seems more special coming out of a stocking on Christmas morning.

Look at places like the Dollar Stores, travel sections, or dollar sections of big stores to find items that are inexpensive.   Look for sales during the year for things you know you are going to buy anyway.   Many of these items you can get very cheap or free if you watch sales and use coupons during the year.  Keep a container to store things you find and keep a list handy.

Here's a big list of ideas that may help you find a few things to fill the stockings the frugal way:

General Stocking Stuffers Ideas:

  • Small notebook and pen/pencils–Kids love to draw and write.  My son has started carrying a notebook and pen in his pocket, like his dad.  He is always prepared and helps make list in the car.  Adults always need new pens.   My husband does, because I have a habit of putting pens in my pocket or hair and then in my pocketbook.  It must come from my teaching days. A strange habit to have.
  • Coloring book and crayons-Who doesn’t love to color?  A great activity for quiet time or to share with your child. Just DO NOT leave the crayons out of the box in a car on a hot day. The results will not be good.
  • Small books- I LOVE books, so my kids always get new books.
  • Toothbrush – My kids always get a new, battery powered toothbrush in their stocking. They get regular ones during the year, but the Christmas toothbrushes are special.
  • Mittens and toboggan/cap-Depending where you are from determines what you call the snuggly thing that keeps your head warm. In the south, it is a toboggan and we slide on the snow on a sled.   No matter what you call it, things to keep you warm in the winter is always great to find in the stocking and very appreciated on cold days.  There are usually big sales for these at the end of the season and you can usually get them very cheap to put back for next year.
  • Toiletries-My boys love getting combs, body wash, shampoo, deodorant, or cologne.  We normally use as many natural products as we can, but not always. Look in the travel section.  This size is perfect for kid or your husband if he travels often.  If you make your own soaps and products, this would be even more special.
  • Food- This can be fruit, nuts, individual snacks, candy, or gum that you normally do not allow during the year.  My boys like it when I find things in collectible tins.  They get to enjoy the treat and have a container for other things during the year.

image by lisa diconti

  • Ornaments- Our boys get a new ornament each year.  When they leave home, they will have a great collection.  I give this on December 1, but it could be nice in the stocking as well.  I usually try to get an ornament that describes them that year…what they were interested in or a vacation we took.  One way I save money is to look at the sales after Christmas.
  • Socks and Underwear- Yes, they get these in their stocking and they anticipate it every year.  In fact, our oldest was with Daddy shopping this month, and they were going to buy some underwear.  Our son said they shouldn’t buy it because Mommy would have it in the stocking. Everyday things are more enjoyable out of the stocking.
  • Chapstick or lip balm- They love getting chapstick.  It is nice to have that in the winter to protect your lips.  Just check the pockets before you wash their clothes.  It is a mess if it goes through the wash and then the dryer.
  • Flashlight – It is a good idea to keep a small flashlight by your bed and have some spread through the house.  Headlights are a neat idea for a flashlight and also work as a book light.
  • Small Stuffed Animals- Kids love sleeping with stuffed animals or taking them in the car.
  • Travel Games- Neat to play in the car or at home.

Boy Ideas: {For their Warrior Hearts}

  • Tools- My sons love any type of tool they can add to their tool box so they can fix things around the house or help Daddy when needed.
  • Key chains- We are farmers and they like to do everything Daddy does.  Including having a key chain hanging on their pants with a small flashlight.  Most of the keys they have are old ones that nobody knows what door they fit. But it makes them feel like men.
  • Hobby items or wooden craft projects - My sons loves rocks.  Anything that has to do with rocks.  We need a room to house their collection.  Small books, tools, or unique gems are special to them.  They also love to build things.  Lowes and Home Improvement have craft kits for kids on Saturdays.  They are free and you can usually go by and get the kit, even if you do not take your child to the workshop.  Is your child interested in any special hobby?
  • Bouncy balls or small cars- Two of my boys’ favorite things.

Girl Ideas: {For their Feminine Hearts}

  • Mani/Pedi Kit - With things to do your nails on a special night with Mommy.
  • Diary or journal – Girls love to record their thoughts and daydreams.
  • Hair Bows /Hairbrush - We like to be pretty starting at a young age, don’t we?
  • Mini sewing kit, cross stitch kit, knitting, or crocheting items - Bring back some of the lost arts with your little girls.

For Your Husband:

  • CDs or audio books- Is there certain music or artist your husband enjoys?  Are there any books that he would enjoy but cannot find the time to read?
  • Movies or Red Box Codes- Think special movies for a date night or a good western that he enjoys.
  • Manicure Kit – Do they call it that for men?  Tweezers and nail clippers are always needed and always seem to be misplaced.
  • Homemade Coupon Book- Include coupons for helping him do task around the house, date nights, back rubs.  There are lots of possibilities!

I hope this list has helped you think of a few things that could fill the stockings at your house.  If you are curious about how the Christmas stocking tradition came about, you might enjoy reading The Legend of the Christmas Stockings.

What do you put in your stockings?

Mary is a farm girl, wife, and homeschooling mom to two sons. She is passionate about her faith, family, homeschooling, healthy living and tries to find balance in it all, as well as farm life. She blogs at The Encouraging Home where she tries to encourage others in life and to stay focused on the Lord and the things that truly matter, even through stress, chaos, and trials. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.



also shared at simple lives thursday


  1. June of Wise Woman, Susie of our Simple Farm, and I were just talking about this over lunch yesterday–here’s some of the great ideas we discussed:

    poptarts–our kids never get these, so how about one package(not box)per stocking for Christmas morning!
    individual boxes of cereal(the small variety pack kind)
    a bottle of coke–why did kids love having their own bottle of pop?

    It’s kind of fun to think outside the box–would love to hear what others do too!

  2. Cindy says:

    Very nice post. She has given me some great ideas for my 9 & 10 year old grand children.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Great Ideas! We do a lot of the same things . . . but our stockings are too small to hold much! You must have larger stockings! ;)

    I had planned on doing a stocking stuffer post this December — but you covered it so well, I won’t need to! :)

  4. Love these ideas! Our gma used to send us ornaments every year and it helped a lot when I finally put up my own Christmas tree!

  5. Great ideas! I can’t think of anything to add offhand. Of course, my children would say the ideal stocking would have a kitten in it, but we won’t go there! ;)

  6. Great ideas..thank you!!!

  7. Keri says:

    We always put new underwear, toothbrushes & paste, art supplies, and sometimes candy. Thanks for your GREAT list! I’m making a mental note of some of these ideas for next year.

  8. Kimberly says:

    An individual disposable bowl of a sweet cereal we don’t buy! And a granola bar! Christmas morning is CRAZY, and we have 3 places to be at once! If they can eat breakfast fast, with little fuss, and we get out the door quicker…we don’t hold up family schedules! (And it prevents extended family issues!)

  9. Lots of great ideas – thank you!

  10. Yolanda says:

    Very nice list! Our children are all grown and flown now, but it was always fun doing the stockings. What came in the stockings was from Santa. Anything else was from us. That way, if times ever got THAT tight, Santa would still be able to come. :)

  11. Abbi says:

    I liked your list but what really made me chuckle is seeing that you call a hat a Toboggan. My brother-in-law who is from Indiana calls it that as well but I had never heard of anybody else doing that. We have always found it humorous as in our minds toboggans are a specific type of big sled and we think of that every time he talks of his toboggan. Anyway- I do realize now that he isn’t the only one who calls it that. It is so interesting how the same words can be used in totally different ways depending on where you live.


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