Tis’ the season for shopping! Check out this curated lists of local business and experiences specifically curated with families in mind. Happy Holidays!
Clothes and Toys
Museum stores are my go-to for unique gifts and in D.C. you’ve got plenty of options. I’d head to the Smithsonian Museum of Air and Space to buy astronaut ice cream for the most discerning of children. For the budding biologist I’d check the Natural History Museum. The American History Museum has old timey favorites, the National Zoo has plushies and T-shirts. And then there are still other museums not in the Smithsonian system. The Spy Museum has gadgets and cool gifts. At the National Gallery of Art you can buy one of a kind crayons and coloring books.You get the idea..
Buy a dress that will be in the family for years to come (literally four years), resizable eco friendly clothing by Ginger Bean Clothing is a business owned and operated by one very cool Washington, D.C. momma. Her skirts and dresses are an original design that can be adjusted as a child grows.
Get your ‘tees for the DMV’ with shirts for the whole family at the Sneekis etsy store. My favorite is the woman’s brunch tee, they also have baseball inspired tees and onsies befitting a baby in the district. (pictured below)
Politics and Prose, a bookstore frequented by the Obama family, has their own holiday book list for children and teens. Titles include picture books about shoes tobiographies about Ruth Bader Ginsburg and early reader books about narwhals. There’s something for every budding bookworm on your list.
If you’d like to surprise your favorite kid with an eco-friendly educational toy pop into Tugooh Toys. There’s also family owned Barstons Child’s Play which has been in the DC area for over 28 years. For dolls and costumes check out Fairy Godmother- Children’s Books & Toys. You might also consider giving your kiddo a gift card to Labyrinth Games and Books a mom owned specialty game store.
“That’s where mommy eats her chocolate” a quote from a friend’s child about a corner of their kitchen. Provide some of that chocolate this year. Send a four pack of gelato from Dolcezza or a box of artisanal showstoppers from Chocolate Chocolate or get partisan and send bars from the political collection from Harper Macaw.
Toddlers can appreciate the finer things in life too, treat a parent and their toddler to high tea with manners maven Mrs. B. Toddler tea with Mrs. B provides an area to play dress up and take tea with a story. She also has classes on manners, open play and camps
Gift certificates for a family dinner are also a great option. 2 Amy’s Pizza is a DC favorite. And I’m partial to Lauriol Plaza where kids are allowed to draw on the table. Or brunch at Ted’s Bulletin will excite even the pickiest of children with their milkshakes and homemade poptarts.
A family membership to the National Building Museum is sure to be a hit and it covers two adults and four children with every visit (hello playdate!). With two permanent exhibits for children to play and a busy schedule for children’s programming, it’s easy to forget this museum is for adults too.
For the artsy fartsy on your list, gift them a class or two. Sign up for a workshop at the Lemon Bowl, some of which are child friendly. Their offerings include; finger knitting, terrarium making and food styling. You can also give gift certificates to All Fired Up where children can paint their own pottery pieces.
Perhaps the ultimate gift is a little time away from the kiddos, provide a date night and send a gift card to Urban Sitter. Urban Sitter is a website connecting families to their perfect caregiver, and each sitter has a short video of him or herself for you to watch alongside their resume.
For the people who have everything, why not give a charitable gift in their name? Donate money to the DC Diaper Bank, an organization which provides diapers and other gateway services for low income families in the district. Help a mom get the lactation support she and her baby needs by supporting the Breastfeeding Center or Bright Beginnings which provides support to homeless families in DC. You can also join me in adopting a family from the Healthy Babies Project for Christmas and be their Santa.