33 answers

Ideas for Granddaughter's First Birthday Gift

My first granddaughter's birthday is approaching, and I would like to purchase a gift - maybe to start a collection or something. Any ideas from other mothers or grandmothers on what might be a good gift.

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Wonderful ideas from everyone. I neglected to tell you that we are purchasing a savings bond and this would be a visual present. I like the add-a-pearl or charm bracelet for the future. I also like the red wagon idea.

I'll let everyone know what I decided on. Thanks again.

Featured Answers

hi K.. jes i have 2 grandchildren that live with me. i started to colect for them the beautifull hallmark shakers. you can get one for all acations . and but them on a shelf. they seem to like them so comes christmas ans easter and all other hilidays you can add to them .B.

My mom gave my daughter a Bitty Baby from American Girl Dolls. It is her favorite. She is almost 3 now and Bitty Baby goes everywhere with us.

When I was pregnant & had my baby shower - my mom had written on the invite for everyone, aside from the gift - to bring a book to start the baby's library. Now every year, my family buys a book for each of my kids, for birthdays, school graduations (grad from kindergarten, & each grade), christmas, easter, v-day, etc.

You can also do mini snowglobes, or little fairy statues or something. I had a disney collection my parents would by me disney mugs, snowglobes & statues, etc - which by the way I"m selling right now cause I have only boys - no girls to pass them onto.

Ok so just a couple ideas - hope you can get use out of one of them!

Good luck!
C. B.

More Answers

I got a charm bracelet when my godchild was born and I give her a special charm each year, or when something significant happens. She is now 8 years old and looks forward to the charm evry birthday and Christmas.I plan to do this with my granddaughter as well.

I don't know how much you want to spend, or what your family traditions are like, but my mother gave me a piece of Waterford crystal for each of my birthdays. Now I have my own set to entertain with when freinds and family come for a special dinner. Also, I know it's a little out of season, but I started a Christmas ornament collection for my goddaughter. That way, when she gets a home of her own, she'll already have ornaments to decorate her tree with. Please excuse this message if you and your family don't celebrate Christmas. Hope that gets you thinking!

Hi K.,
I have an online store with VERY cute monogrammed birthday suits and dresses (also accessories)! Visit www.PrincessSharon.com and look for "Extra Sparkle" and then "Cupcake Couture"

Best of luck!
S.
www.PrincessSharon.com

For my nieces and close friend's daughters I have started charm bracelets for their first birthdays. The first charm has typically been something engraved and each year I add a charm based on something in that child's life...i.e. became an older sister, started school, etc.
Its been a big hit and my brother even reciprocated with my daughter!
hope this helps.

What about a necklace and add a pearl each year or each special occasion?
Another idea; for my niece, I got her a charm bracelet. At different points in her life she will get additional charms. (she got a beetle car to start for christmas b/c she loved them...then a heart that said big sis with the date of her little brother's birth...then a cruise ship after our trip to alaska...a school bus when she started kindergarten) I made a scrapbook for her and each time she gets a charm she also gets a page for the scrapbook. (can you tell my father-in-law has a jewelry store...) if you want something she will enjoy immediately at a low cost...you can attach helium balloons (obviously only to play with completely supervised)
Whatever you do...make sure it's something you are prepared to do for each future child too! ; )

Hi K. B, I would like to suggest you try my K.'s Huggable. Grandmom's are just loving them and SOOOOO do the Mom's and kids!! A wonderful loooooong lasting gift...check out my website www.huggabletowels.com and www.nhmade.com products/child care...

Let me know what you think!

K. V

How about starting a string of pearls? You can add to it for all occasions..holidays, birthdays, etc.. then one day she'll have it for a special occasion.

I wouldn't go with the doll idea. My sister-in-law bought an expensive Barbie for each of her girls for every occasion, but they had to be kept on display and often in their packages, so the girls got frustrated not being able to play with them. Eventually I think they were sold. I have a large doll collection that my grandmother started as an adult, but it's from her travels (and those of other family members) around the world - it has sentimental value for that reason, but it's a lot to care for and the display cabinet is quite large. I enjoyed looking at it when I was a child, and still do, but it was a "look, don't touch" thing which I would not have appreciated if she had given these things to me when I was a kid.

The pearls, stock, bonds ideas are good but they aren't things you can give her to "open" - just put them away for her or have the parents put them in the safety deposit box for her to enjoy/appreciate later. The pearls may frustrate her at a young age before she has enough to look like a necklace, and then what if she wants to wear it to school at age 8? Can't have that!

Whatever you give her now, she won't appreciate until she is older. You can start the collection if you don't expect her to open it and appreciate it - I would hate to see you disappointed!

I enjoy a lovely set of silver teaspoons that my grandmother received from her great aunt - matching spoons, each engraved with the year or sometimes her birthday (e.g. 6-3-08) - she started receiving them when she was 7, and had a set of 12 by the time she turned 18. This was a nice start to her married life, but it's nice for any girl's adulthood, especially because single women never have any nice things that are usually acquired as wedding gifts! My mother-in-law had a lovely set of teacups like one of the other posters mentioned - we enjoy using them at holidays and other nice dinners. A girlfriend had a similar collection from her aunt. Again, these aren't things that can be played with or appreciated by a young child, so it might be nice to start her at a later age.

My daughter has a nice picture frame, and the mat is cut with holes and captions for each year of her child's life - every year, you add another picture of the child at that age. In the center is a photo of the child at birth, with the date and birth weight listed. It's fun for the kids to look at how they've changed.

Consider some sort of scrapbook or memory book with stories about YOUR family, your parents and grandparents. You could add a page or two at every birthday, making the stories longer or more complex as she gets older and can enjoy them. Someday, when she is grown and you are no longer around, she will have a wonderful treasury of family stories.

If you are interested in starting a collection, I would recommend what my mother has done for her granddaughter. She started an add-a-pearl necklace. On the first birthday, you purchase the gold chain and one pearl. With each occasion you add a pearl to her necklace. By the time she reaches her twenties, your granddaughter will have a beautiful pearl necklace that she will cherish from you. It's also very cute to see the little ones when they wear their necklace with just a couple of pearls on it. Personally, we think it is a nice gift that will grow with her through the years rather than some trinkets or collectibles that you may like but she may not as an adult. A girl will always love pearls! Hope that helps!

How about start a modest savings account towards her college education? That's a gift that will help her for the rest of her life! You can get her a nice little stuffed animal, too, with a little card explaining your gift to her parents. The wonderful thing about this is that it is a gift for the whole family, something that everyone will benefit from, and bless you for.

hi K.. jes i have 2 grandchildren that live with me. i started to colect for them the beautifull hallmark shakers. you can get one for all acations . and but them on a shelf. they seem to like them so comes christmas ans easter and all other hilidays you can add to them .B.

Hi K.

I was looking for a gift for my granddaughter's Baptism, and came across a website where you can buy a share of stock! Now that's something that can be added on to as a collection - imagine beginning a stock portfolio from the first birthday? Go to: http://giveashare.com/

How about snowglobes?
I started my daughter on these. She gets one every Christmas. At this age, it's hard to know what each child will like as they get older. Snowglobes come in numerous designs. When she is younger, Disney ones are great. If she has a favourite movie, they are sure to have a snowglobe for it. As she gets older, she may like butterflies, dolphins,(my daughter has many of these ones), Christmas ones, many are musical too.
good luck and have fun shopping.
K.

If i had the money i would start the pearl necklace.. I wanted to dothis next year as gifts for my flower girls (all 3 of them) but it is just too much.
My husbands GRANDPARENTS started our two college accounts and every birthday and or holiday they add to it. I always thanks them and say "they will appreciate this so much when they attend college for nothing." The laugh but know the gift is appreciated by me.

When I was pregnant & had my baby shower - my mom had written on the invite for everyone, aside from the gift - to bring a book to start the baby's library. Now every year, my family buys a book for each of my kids, for birthdays, school graduations (grad from kindergarten, & each grade), christmas, easter, v-day, etc.

You can also do mini snowglobes, or little fairy statues or something. I had a disney collection my parents would by me disney mugs, snowglobes & statues, etc - which by the way I"m selling right now cause I have only boys - no girls to pass them onto.

Ok so just a couple ideas - hope you can get use out of one of them!

Good luck!
C. B.

Some great ideas here. Personal favorites are memberships to museums, zoos, aquariums, etc...savings bonds, and possibly the string of pearls idea. I think doll collections, porcelain, etc.... is NOT a good idea.... and it's only my opinion (I'll tell you why). These items are "dust collectors" that take up lots of space. If your granddaughter's family moves, they have to move all these delicate items. If they are "collectible" and must be stored properly to be worth any value, nobody can enjoy them anyways. When your granddaughter goes to college, she has to either drag them with her, or her mom/dad have to store them for years. Also, if the granddaughter doesn't like them, she will feel guilty if she got rid of them (because she knows you bought them specially for her), so now she's become a packrat for the sake of saving your feelings, or so she can hold onto something you bought her - even if she doesn't particularly like the items. (Can you tell I'm speaking from EXPERIENCE?!) Ugh... I'd go with something monetary that will be useful for when she's older, or the thoughtful pearls - maybe she'd wear on her wedding day or pass to her own daughter someday. What I wish I had from my own grandmother were pictures with her handwritten stories behind them, and letters and messages to me to cherish forever now that I am an avid scrapbooker... that's what would mean the world to me.

A string of pearls. You can give her 3 for her first birthday and then one additional pearl each year so that by the time she a teenager she'll have a whole necklace. She won't appreciate it now, but it will be real special between the ages of 4-11 and then again when the necklace is complete.

Or my godfather gave me a silver dollar in casing or plastic depending on the year from when I was born until even today. One per year and now I have a little collection.

My mother started my older daughter on the Bitty Baby collection from American Girl dolls when I had my second child. You can get her the starter package and then get her clothes/accessories for each special occasion (like holidays and her birthday). Unfortunately, my older daughther never got that interested in it, but my almost 2 year old loves her now. She feeds the baby her bottle, gives her a bink, puts a diaper on her and puts her "night-night". I think the dolls can be made to resemble your granddaughter. Congratulations on being a grandmother.

My daughters aunt and uncle always get my daughters saving bonds. I love these because my kids really don't need anything and when they go college they will have some money saved.

I give my niece a teacup and saucer every year for Christmas. Each year the design is different but always floral, bone china from England. A family friend does the same for my daughter, and they look so pretty lined up on a shelf high in her bedroom. Her mother did the same for her, and when she turned 20, her mother gave her the collection of 20 teacups! You can easily find them at Marshalls, Homegoods, TJ Maxx, etc.

My daughter received a share of stock for her first birthday, but we ended cashing it out because the company changed hands!

savings bonds are always good, also my sister-in-law purchased a birthday set from I believe Avon for my daughter, every year she gives her a little ceramic girl that has the age she is turning, as she gets older the little girls get older looking, they are very cute and my 5 year old loves them, My sister-in-law purchase it all at once 5 years ago so I'm not sure if they are still available, but you could always check. Good luck, I'm sure your granddaugther will love anything you give her.

Add - a - pearl
Most Jewlers do them. The chain is about 40.00 and then you purchase the pearls and they can be added to the chain.
THe pearls are different sizes, so you pick which size for her necklace and tehy keep the info so anyone can buy one to add and once she has enough on the necklace she can wear for special occassions.....graduations, wedding, etc

Hi K.,
If you are looking for something very special....I know some people who have girls have purchased a neclace that has small beads of pearls. You start with one or two and add to them each year. They do make smaller sizes for little girls. That is something she would always have...or possibly a gold id bracelet. Another option that I do for my sons is a special ornament, I get the wallace sleigh bell. I buy one for each of them each year for Christmas. Then when they start their own family they will have one full set of ornaments for their tree. I said I would do it for 12 years, but I will probably do it for more. Another idea is a collection of proof sets from the national mint. My kids grandparents purchase this for them. It is a great collection for them to have also. Hope these ideas help.....good luck!

My grandmother gave me a silver bell (round, not "bell"-shaped) Christmas ornament every year until I was 21. I guess this is not so much a birthday idea ... but anyway when I was a kid I looked forward to getting my special bell packages, but the gift has become more meaningful as I've gotten older. Now I have a beautiful Christmas tree full of silver bells, and I always think of my grandmother when I look at my tree. So my advice (if you want to generalize it and get away from the Christmas theme) is to give something that your grandaughter will appreciate now but even more later, so that she has something special to remind her of you forever. For me as an adult, this is now the best part of the gift, and I will pass my bells on to my daughter if I ever have one (I've got two boys so far; maybe they will like the bells too).

My mom gave my daughter a Bitty Baby from American Girl Dolls. It is her favorite. She is almost 3 now and Bitty Baby goes everywhere with us.

I started a collection for my daughter that was inspired by my grandmother.. I give my daughter every year for her birthday a doll from precious moments. They have a line of figuines that are called Growing in Grace and they have a number for each birthday up to 16. They are so cute. I remember my grandmother gave me something similar made by hallmark and I looked forward to them every year. I still have them and I will treasure them always.

When I was born, my grandmother bought me a charm bracelet (empty) and then for every birthday she bought me a charm that represented that year - like a saxophone the year that I made jazz band in junior high or a little kitten charm the year I got my first pet, etc. I still cherish it and now that I'm grown up I buy myself a charm for each important life event that I go though. =)
M.

Start a pearl neckalace....a new pearl every year! my cousin did that with his daughter...so cute!

Madam Alexander dolls are always good. They are also collectibles if kept for properly.

Gifts that I (and my kids) loved for first birthday were the radio flyer walker wagon - it is really sturdy and just the right size and it gets used well beyond the first year;
yearly membership to the zoo;
and yearly membership to the childrens museum -
At 1 they are so fickle with their moods and needs that it is really great to have a membership to these fun places so we can go when the mood strikes us. If we have to make it a short visit, that causes no stress because with the membership it is a free visit. Also, many memberships allow you to bring friends for free which is really nice too.
This probably isn't the type of collection you had in mind, but if you wanted to start a "collection" type gift you could make a ritual of giving a Dr. Seuss book, or some other childrens series book you like, inscribed with a loving message from you, for each birthday.

My MIL from my first marriage bought my son a year old tree sapling on his first birthday. We planted it in their yard, and now it's neat to see the tree and my son grow - and he always knows how old the tree is!

what about shares of stock? My daughter has Disney stock that her aunt got her .. one share every year... it's not a lot, but it's something ..

Hi K.!!My son recieved the Potterybarn chair with his name monagramed on it...he loves it and its something he will always have,my sister got it for him(hes 13months),its an oversized chair and adorable.He sits in it everyday,they have all differant slip covers to choose from....he has the red one.Hope this helps!!

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