‘Tis gift-giving season and I’m all for recommending gifts that help people create amazing memories as families. That’s what we do with mine. In fact, instead of buying gifts, for years my husband and I have spent money doing something together, whether it’s a meal out, a weekend getaway or a trip overnight in a hut somewhere. The outdoorsy and adventurous parents out there will always appreciate a gift that helps them fuel their passion for the great outdoors, and that also facilitates the process of bringing their little ones with them.
So, what can you do to help them create those memories? Here are 6 gift ideas you might want to consider!
1. A Family Membership to an Outdoor Club: Check out the family memberships at the Alpine Club of Canada, the local climbing gym or whichever outdoor associations exist in your area. This gift will help outdoorsy parents connect with other outdoorsy parents, and provide them with resources that will help them make the most of outdoor experiences with their kids.
2. A Sport Brella: This pop-up umbrella tent was a lifesaver for me many times this past summer when the heat of the day would have been way too much for my little one. It’s a bit bulky, but packs away in its own sleeve and is perfect for the park, lakeside or car camping.
3. A Homemade Coupon Offering Help: You wouldn’t believe how hard adventurous parents work to make life amazing for their kids. Often they do it at the expense of their own time in the outdoors, or at least their time spent outdoors alone with their partner. Offer to give them some kid-free time so that they can get out! And don’t wait for them to call you; give them a shout sometime offering to arrange a date for them to spend some alone time in the great outdoors.
4. An Inspirational Book or Film: I find a lot of inspiration in the stories other adventurous parents have shared, whether in books or on film. It reminds me what is possible with kids! Some of my favourites are the film, Finding Farley (Leanne Allison and Karsten Heuer’s journey with young Zev across Canada to visit Farley Mowat), and Michael Lanza’s book, Before They’re Gone: A Family’s Year-Long Quest to Explore America’s Most Endangered National Parks (read my review here). Next on my reading list is Small Feet Big Land: Adventure, Home, And Family On The Edge Of Alaska by Erin McKittrick.
5. A Baby Carrier: For the new parents in your life, I highly recommend you purchase or chip in on a baby carrier. Having the means of carrying your baby opens up a world of possibilities when it comes to travel, adventure and the outdoors. There are many fabulous carriers on the market and my favourites can be found under Gear for Active Families and Mamas.
6. A Gift Card to an Outdoor Retailer: Yes, it’s generic but will help a great deal. Quality gear can really help parents get outdoors with their kids, and will help make the experience as enjoyable as possible. Remember that kids need everything you would purchase for yourself – whether it’s rainproof pants or a sleeping bag – and it adds up. So, give adventurous parents a boost with a gift card to stores, such as MEC and Mountain Baby.