Kelsey here! A couple weeks ago, I went live on Instagram with the help of Dominique White, our Motha from Texas! We talked about holiday gifts within the adoption triad, and needless to say... it was a successful brainstorm session. It's hard to find a gift for someone you don't see as often as the other people in your life. So to recap our live video, here is your 2017 Holiday Adoption Go-To Guide!!
Try to remember the things that the other person likes! What kinds of activities do they do with their family? What hobbies do they have? What is something practical you think they could use or might need at home? If you don't typically go "all out" for gifts or visits, I suggest you keep it at the same level. If you are new to your open adoption, play it safe, but be thoughtful! If you buy them one practical gift, add another gift that lets them know you were thinking of them.
Some of the gifts for birth moms and adoptive parents could be interchangeable as well. We aren't really that different from each other! :)
Want to buy these exact products? Click the store in the caption below the image, and it shall lead you to its promised land!
Gifts for Adoptive Parents
- Soaps, Lotions, Bath & Spa Products. (Many items are pictured above)
- Graphic Tees! There are a ton of adoption tees out there! One is pictured above from AdoptMatch. You can also order shirts from places like Brave Love.
- Date Night Gift! You could box up a couple different things for them. A movie (or gift card to the movies), a bottle of wine or hot cocoa with mugs, popcorn and movie candy. Or create a different kind of date night for them! This is very thoughtful, because sometimes parents need a break!
- Are they religious? You could get a prayer journal or a devotional.
- Chocolates or baked goods. If you typically bake holiday goodies this time of year, include some of these! You could also enclose one of your own family recipes to share with their family and it's something that your birth child could have forever.
- Family Pictures. Many adoptive parents tell me how badly they wish they had some photos of their child's birth family! Make a photo album, scrapbook, or put one in a cute frame! You could also make a family tree. You can't go wrong with something from the heart!
Gifts for Birth Children
- Ornaments. Dominique bought her birth son a special ornament that she and her other son picked out! They picked out a basketball, and you can pick out anything that reminds you of him or her, or something sentimental.
- Toys! Find out what toy they have been wanting, or what they are into right now. Pictured above is the music instruments set that I bought for my birth son! It was a hit at the visit!
- Books. I always buy my birth son books for Christmas and birthday. I always loved books as a kid, and I found out that he also loves them! Sometimes if it's a special book or a special occasion, I write a note on the inside cover. Amazon has a section that tells you which books are appropriate for different children's ages. Check those out here. If your birth child is a little older, look at Amazon's book page for teens & young adults.
- Clothes. Find out what their size is and buy them something cute! I always love getting pictures of my birth son wearing something I bought him!
Side note: If I buy him an "I love Dad" shirt, I buy an "I love Mom" type of shirt too. I am just self-conscious of hurting feelings!
- Do they have siblings? I always pick up a gift or two for his older brother because I want him to know that I love him, too! I think it establishes the fact that they are a part of my family, just as they are a part of mine. You certainly don't have to do this, especially if it's not in the budget. But maybe you could write the other siblings a card or something similar!
Gifts for Birth Moms
- Pictures! I can't say it enough... we love pictures! Put them in a frame, an scrapbook, a photo album... I don't care. Just gimme. You can get as crafty as you want! This year I received the ornament pictured above! Shutterfly can make you just about any photo gift your heart desires!
- Candles. Someone I admire once told me that if you are grieving, light a candle to be alone with your thoughts. I love candles and I usually get these from the adoptive parents as gifts. This year I got the candle pictured above... because they know how stressed I am!
- Do they need something practical? If you know they may be struggling financially or there is something they need for their home that is within your budget, you could get this as a gift! Grocery or gas gift cards are also a nice addition to a holiday gift. Make sure that this item is not the entire gift, however.
- Jewelry. A necklace or piece of jewelry that symbolizes her birth child or adoption journey is always a great gesture! I have a beautiful necklace my son's parent's bought for me, and I wear it every single day. Pictured above is one of my favorite necklaces that makes a great gift!
- Cards. When you sign the card, make sure you write something with meaning and purpose. Let her know you love her and are grateful for her. Birth moms, do the same for the adoptive parents and birth child!
- Feelings. Holidays are hard for birth moms! So please make sure you are aware of her feelings and emotions, and try to give her words of encouragement and tell her what she means to you! Check up on her, send her an extra picture or two, and keep the bond strong into the new year!