When it's time to buy presents for kids, many of us are at a total loss.
We don't know what they want, or what's appropriate for their ages.
Real Simple magazine (www.realsimple.com) has a gift guide for children of all ages, and Kris Connell brought several examples to The Early Show, wrapping up a weeklong series on family matters.
The best part? All the suggestions cost less than $50!
NEWBORN TO 1 YEAR
Rattles by Blabla
The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends five servings of vegetables a day. So give your baby this quintuplet set: a knit cabbage, radish, carrot, pea pod, and tomato (OK, that's a fruit). Basket not included.
PRICE: $35; TO BUY: www.blablakids.com
Burp-cloth Set from Retrofit Baby
Your spitting image can be messy. Clean him or her up with a pack of three personalized cotton cloths inspired by vintage soap boxes. PRICE: $45; www.retrofitbaby.com
AGES 1 TO 3
Night-light from Lumisource
This little piggy deserves a home. Made from translucent paper, the porker can light the way to the bathroom, so when nature calls, Sleepy won't boink his knees on the nightstand. A 25-watt bulb is included. PRICE: $20; www.uncommongoods.com
Play CD by Desoto Records
All Wiggled out? This CD features 14 catchy Top 40-esque songs for kids (read: no nursery rhymes) that you won't mind hearing over and over. And over. One standout: "I Like to Make Noise and Break Things." PRICE: $12; TO BUY: www.desotorecords.com
AGES 3 TO 5
Cape by Little Capers
Future supermen and superwomen will give a hero's welcome to these short- and long-sleeve tees with different symbols (earth, lightning, stars) and detachable capes. Sizes 2 to 8; in three colors. PRICE: $32 to $37; TO BUY: www.littlecapers.com
Crayon Apron from Child to Cherish
Tools for the aspiring artiste are always close at hand with this machine-washable cotton apron that holds 24 Crayola crayons (included). Magnifique! PRICE: $22; TO BUY: www.thewirelesscatalog.com
AGES 5 TO 7
Felt Cake Kit from Twinkle-Kids
Let them eat ... felt cake. Or at least decorate it. The three-tier base comes with 50 appliques. Choose from three themes: garden, Persian-inspired Suzani, or Jack and the Bean-stalk. Fee, fi, fo, fun! PRICE: $49; TO BUY: www.twinkle-kids.com
Memory Game by Marimekko
Your child can test her recall skills with 60 disks in 30 colorful designs, which come in a tube perfect for travel. Each circle notes the name of the print, the year of its creation, and the designer. Pop quiz! PRICE: $30: TO BUY: www.klitomarimekko.com
AGES 7 TO 10
The Sunlight Print Kit from Chronicle
Show 'em how they did it in the olden days. This kit lets kids "photograph" objects such as leaves using sunlight, water, and light-sensitive paper. All supplies, included. PRICE: $23; TO BUY: www.chroniclebooks.com
Snow Globes by the Sports Collection Guild
Hit your sluggers gift out of the park. Choose from 44 ballpark replicas that play "take me out to the Ball Game" while snow (in the teams favorite color) falls. Uses two AA batteries (not included). PRICE: $40; TO BUY: www.solutions.com
AGES 10 to 14
Necklace by Subway Token
Give her a token of your appreciation. Vintage subway coins from 19 cities across the nation, including Philadelphia and Los Angeles, are strung on either adjustable leather or metal ball-and-chain chokers. PRICE: $20; TO BUY: www.hanger3.com
Virtual-distance Football by Toy Quest
Why practice with a plain pigskin when he can measure his pass? A sensor in this foam football tracks the yards traveled and displays them on a screen. Uses two cell batteries (not included). PRICE: $20; TO BUY: www.discoverystore.com
For more gift ideas, check out Real Simple's Fall Family issue, and the magazine's Web site.