Inexpensive Stocking Stuffers

by Angie Zalewski


Courtesy of Frugal Family Network

You may have heard TV commercials touting everything from expensive collectibles to high priced electronic toys for "stocking stuffers". As parents, we stand firm that stockings should be filled with fun trinkets and small blessings rather than $100+ worth of merchandise.

Here's what we do for our kids' stockings. Throughout the year we accumulate fun little toys and small gifts. We hide them in a sack in our closet. Last night my (Angie) husband Tom and I got out the Stocking Stuffer sack and perused the vast selection we had accumulated. Here are some of the items:

  • wild pens and neat gadget toys my husband got as freebies from a computer convention

  • new toothbrush and toothpaste the dentist gave us at our last visit

  • specialty candy I got on clearance

  • little bottles of hotel soaps, shampoos, and lotion

  • homemade Gak and playdough (I added coconut scent, blue food coloring and glitter!)

  • travel size battle ship game bought at a garage sale for 50

  • and I'll also add a giant cookie Tom baked several weeks ago and have hidden in the freezer

The boys stockings will be spilling over with fun things they will enjoy! And it costs us next to nothing.

So keep a sound perspective on stocking stuffing this year. Look for creative ways to fill your children's stockings.


Deana Ricks and Angie Zalewski are co-founders of the Frugal Family Network. The present a variety workshops on creative ways to stretch the family dollar (also available on cassette) and publish a popular thrift newsletter.

Take the Next Step

  • Check out our Christmas Countdown Calendar. A 5-week to-do list to help you prepare for Christmas.
  • Check out some additional articles to help prepare for Christmas this year.
  • For inexpensive Christmas gift ideas, click here
  • Take these Holiday Decorating Ideas & make them your own!

Share your thoughts about this article with the editor: Click Here

Stay Connected with TDS





Subscribe to TDS Newsletters

Join over 250,000 other subscribers!

Join Fido!

Discounted movie tickets
Sign up for Savvy Savings at TDS and get a free membership for discounted movie tickets!

Your Email:


Surviving Tough Times
Dollar Stretcher Parents
Dollar Stretcher Tips
The Dollar Stretcher (text-based)
Financial Independence
The Computer Lady
Computer Lady Lessons
Healthy Foods

Your Email:


View the TDS Privacy Policy.