This is it, friends. 2016 is the year I’m going to get organised and shop early for gifts, so I can properly maximise time spent watching Christmas movies, eating mince pies and singing carols.
With that in mind, I’ve been scoping out gifts that might suit Flea, my 11-year-old skateboarding, iPhone-loving, and basically completely weird daughter. It’s a funny age – a bit too old for toys, a bit too young for some of the teen products.
Since it’s Christmas, it’s always good to find gifts that help you to give a little back to those in need, and today I’m sharing a clever way to make all your Black Friday bargains good deeds and gifts in one.
Easyfundraising is a social enterprise that lets you donate a percentage of your online shopping to a charity or cause of your choice. There are over 3,000 retail partners signed up with the site, and between 1 and 5% of your purchase will typically be donated to your chosen cause – so whether you’re buying socks or booking a hotel room, you can be fundraising as you spend.
Easyfundraising is a dead good way of turning Christmas present buying into a good deed. Spend £100 on Amazon and £1.50 will go to your chosen cause. There’s a browser extension that will automatically register your donation, and even a mobile app if you’re shopping on your phone. It’s ridiculously simple, and I hope lots of you will go and take a look!
We’ll be using the site this Christmas to support our favourite causes.
At this time of year, I try and donate to Shelter, to support people who are homeless or vulnerably housed. We’ve also just dropped off our annual donation this morning at the local food bank, including a few advent calendars. And on December 16, we’ll be supporting Save the Children’s Christmas Jumper Day.
If you’re in search of inspiration, here are five of my favourite products for 11-year-old girls (or boys) at the moment that would be perfect for the tween in your family:
Gift Ideas for 11 Year Olds Under £25
Skater Trainers, £16.99
Flea is an enthusiastic skateboarding novice and spends hours practicing grips and tricks and jumps. It makes me slightly less neurotic when she uses these skater trainers, they’re simple, plastic cages that go over the wheels on a skateboard to stop it moving while you’re perfecting your trey flip. Kids learn tricks faster, and with less risk of cracking or breaking something. Win/Win.
Rechargeable iPod/iPhone Dock, £21.95
Like most kids her age, Flea is all about her “jams”. It helps motivate her to sit down and do homework now she has her own music dock that she can plug her iPhone into, and listen to music while she’s working – she also Skypes when I’m not paying close enough attention, but that’s a story for another day. This Bluetooth Speaker iPhone and iPod dock is a great option, portable, and not too loud.
Vans Backpack, £21.99
If you can’t be on a skateboard, the next best thing is a skaters’ backpack – so this year, Flea is rocking this old school Vans backpack in classic black and white check. At under £25, the Vans Old Skool backpack is a great price, and they’re nice and hard wearing enough for school days.
Touch Finger Gloves, £6.99
I recently bought these for Flea, then went on a trip to a very snowy part of Germany and kicked myself for not buying them for myself – taking your gloves off constantly to Instagram is NO fun! These gloves allow kids to text from their phones without removing gloves – which lets face it means the gloves are a lot more likely to do their job in keeping hands warm, and less likely to get lost! These gloves are waterproof, too, so kids can still throw snowballs with dry hands.
Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, $35 (US)
This book? It’s a MUST BUY for all the girls in your life, from about the age of seven upwards. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is packed with true, inspiring stories of 100 girls and young women from all over the world doing amazing things. Since reading this book, Flea has been regularly re-telling me the story of the YouTuber who drove a car in Saudi Arabia (“Mum, can you believe women can’t even drive there?”), the two sisters from Compton who became global tennis champions, the woman from Kenya who planted 4 million trees… and more. It’s a bloody brilliant book and your girl deserves to read it. So do you. It’s not available in the UK until March 2017, but you can get your hands on a copy by pledging $35 or more to the authors’ crowdfunding campaign. Which you should do. Immediately.
- this post contains some affiliate links