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Illustration for article titled The Inventory Gift Guide of Stocking Stuffers For Kids
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

Now that the stockings have been hung by the chimney with care, it’s time to fill them with treats for the kids.

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For my family, this is an opportunity to include a small gift that my kids aren’t expecting, which will hopefully surprise and delight them. Bonus: many stocking stuffers also make great travel toys to take along for the next trip.

Solar System Marble Set, $9
Solar System Marble Set, $9
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez
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For kids fascinated by outer space, this solar system marble set makes a beautiful addition to their collection. It comes with a marble for the sun and each planet in the solar system — even Pluto.

Bath Bombs, Superhero-Themed Toys and Unicorn-Themed Toys, $33
Bath Bombs, Superhero-Themed Toys and Unicorn-Themed Toys, $33
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

There’s something thrilling about dropping a bath bomb into the tub and watching it fizz and dissolve in the water. Better yet, these bath bombs come with a surprise inside, including superhero-themed toys and unicorn-themed toys.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07MCM7GF6/

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Spot It Mini Holiday Tin, $12
Spot It Mini Holiday Tin, $12
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

Not only do card games make excellent stocking stuffers, they also come in handy for those times when you’re at a restaurant and it feels like the food is never going to come and everyone is hangry and how long does it really take to warm up the chicken nuggets anyway.

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One of my favorite card games is Spot It!. With themes such as camping, Disney’s Frozen, and, appropriately, the holidays, Spot It! is a fun and easy picture matching game for kids ages 6 and up. Players race to spot a picture that appears on both their card and the card that’s dealt from the deck.

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Melissa & Doug Scratch Art Activity Kits, $13
Melissa & Doug Scratch Art Activity Kits, $13
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez
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Kids ages 4 to 7 always seem to get a kick out of scratch art, which involves using a sharp wooden stylus and scratching the black paper to reveal the rainbow art underneath.

The Melissa & Doug Scratch Art Activity Kits come with rainbow, dinosaur and sea life-themed art. The Melissa & Doug Bookmark Party Pack should also keep kids occupied for a while.

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Pets Portrait Diary, $11
Pets Portrait Diary, $11
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez
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This Pets Portrait Diary by Mudpuppy is adorable and comes with a lock and key for kids to scribble their secrets and diatribes.

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Robotics Mix and Match Jigsaw Puzzle, $13
Robotics Mix and Match Jigsaw Puzzle, $13
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

Kids ages 2 and up can fit together the head, body and leg pieces of this Robotics Mix and Match Jigsaw Puzzle to form a robot. With 12 two-sided pieces, that means hundreds of combinations.

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69 Pieces Natural World Animals, $16
69 Pieces Natural World Animals, $16
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

Small animal figurines are great for imaginary play. This 52-piece sea life set may be a bit much, but you can always dole them out slowly. With just a few pieces, kids can create an underwater fantasy.

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Not just interested in sea life? Try this combination of dinosaurs, farm animals, zoo creatures, sea life and insects.

Or create a miniature fairy world with this set of 10 boy and girl fairies.

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https://www.amazon.com/Safari-Ltd-Super-TOOBs-Construction/dp/B0767Q8P2T/

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Dot Art, $16
Dot Art, $16
Graphic: Ana Luisa Suarez

A new set of art supplies is a no-brainer stocking stuffer. If you already have plenty of markers, crayons and chalk, try some Dot Art, which is great for young kids who don’t have a ton of dexterity. It’s very easy to use them to stamp out a piece of art.

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Ellen Lee is a freelance writer in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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