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What Can I Buy My Tween for Christmas?

Oct 13, 2007
Tweens are kids between 10 and 13. Not yet teenagers, but more sophisticated than their younger siblings, tweens can be very hard to buy presents for. If you're on a limited budget, it can be hard to fit in their top picks like video games and high-tech gadgets like i-pods and mp3 players. Is there a way to please the tweens on your list without going broke? There is if you're willing to be creative and think outside the box.

One of the hottest toys this year for tweens is the Xeko line of games. It's a combination trading card collecting and eco-adventure game with missions to different habitats where players save endangered species. What makes tweens think it's so great is that Xeko really does help save endangered species by donating 4% of its profits to Conservation International. Plus, the trading cards are made of recycled paper and printed with soy-based ink.

Many tweens are environmentally conscious nowadays and want to do something to help the planet. The Xeko games combine altruism with fun, and that's way cool to tweens.

For girls in this age range, some of the most wanted gifts are accessories like scarves, hats, purses and totes and the funkier and more unique, the better. They're developing their own sense of style and want something that everyone else doesn't have.

One good way to find out of the ordinary tween gifts is to bypass the big-box stores where everyone shops and check out the specialty retailers online. You'll be surprised to find that they're not as expensive as you might think. In fact, many of them have bargains and discounts that bring their product prices below the major retailers.

For tween boys, consider sports equipment, board games especially role-playing games, trading cards, science or craft kits and collectibles. There are also plug n' play TV games that aren't as expensive as their video game console counterparts. You can even give your male tween clothing, if you make sure it has his favorite logo on it.

The best way to be sure that your gifts will be appreciated is to listen to your tweens and draw them out about what they like. Notice what grabs their attention when commercials come on while you're watching TV with them and ask them what they think the hottest toy will be this Christmas. Their answer just might tell you what they want to find under the tree.
About the Author
Lill Hawkins blogs about resources for finding safe toys for Toddlers to Teens and maintains a recall list at How to Find Safe Toys
Check in daily for the latest toy and sports equipment related recalls and a long list of alternative to blah big-box gifts.
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