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45 Creative and Useful Gifts for the whole family

Useful gifts are the best! You are sure they will get used PLUS you don’t have to worry about contributing to the problem of “too much stuff.” These types of useful gifts are great for grandparents to give for Christmas or birthdays or great for anyone to gift to someone who is trying to live more minimally.

Recently I was thinking about how, on Christmas morning, sometimes my kids are overrun with toys. After Santa gifts, family gifts, gifts from grandparents etc etc the toys tend to pile up behind them and I think they are honestly overwhelmed with all of the options. Sometimes it is the non-toys useful gifts that are more exciting than the pile of toys. These might be fun options for you to give as a family gift to extended family members, or choose a few here and there to add to your kid’s gift lists. If you are doing the four gifts of Christmas (Something you want, something you need, something to wear, something to read) these useful gifts will go perfectly with the “Something You Need” gift theme.

I’ve used my creative gift brain to come up with a bunch of really fun and useful gifts that work great for Christmas, birthdays or any day!

This post contains affiliate links. This means, if I will get paid a small commission (at no cost to you!) if you purchase products through my links. I always try to recommend products I have personal experience with and LOVE. I also read reviews and ratings to make sure that I am offering up the best possible gift option for you. You can read more in my full disclosure.

Useful gifts for a good morning including cereal dispensers, bowls, placemats and cereal with a text overlay "Good Morning Sunshines" Family Gift Idea

Good Morning Sunshine! Useful Gifts for a better morning

Now I know, I know, cereal isn’t the healthiest breakfast option. But kids LOVE cereal and sometimes it is the fastest option for moms. How about a family gift all centered on that tasty, crunchy dessert I mean breakfast food?

Here are a few fun useful gifts to add to a “Good Morning Sunshine” gift basket. (See pictures and links below the descriptions!)

A cereal dispenser– One of these bubble gum looking machines would be a HUGE hit at our house. They make it easier for kids to get their cereal which in turn makes it easier on mom and dad. Win-Win.

Deep unbreakable bowls for kids– These are colorful, perfect for cereal and don’t break. Woot! We can always use a refill of cereal bowls (where do those things run off to anyway?)

Some deep and pretty cereal bowls for bigger kids/parents- These bowls come in white or pretty colors.

When I was little I read the back of cereal bowls but now those things are L-A-M-E (generally). How about some fun placemats for under the cereal bowls?

These educational placemats for younger kids are a cute option.

Here are placemats for older kids

A couple of fun cereals (or a bunch!) to add to this gift would be the frosting on top.

Bubble Bubble Useful Gifts for bath and shower time

Everyone takes a bath, and most everyone could use some updated (and luxurious) bath items. (See pictures and links below)

Our sister and brother-in-law bought us some new fluffy bath towels one Christmas that were divine! These plush bath towels have great reviews.

We have this shower head with a bluetooth speaker and it is awesome. A great useful gift for teens or adults who want to listen to music or podcasts while they shower .

Kid Hooded towel– My kids would be over-the-moon to have their own character towel, there are several cute options available!

Color my Bath– These tablets are so cool! Kids can watch the effects of color mixing while having a bath. Throw a few of these in the tub and the colored water makes baths infinitely more fun.

Bath Bomb– Now it’s time for mom (and maybe dad?) to have their own bath fun. Bath bombs are my new obsession. These big set is available on Amazon.

Bath toy– I love this bath toy, it absorbs the water and then rains down. So sweet!

Bath pouf– Enough for the whole family!

A picture of useful gifts for lunch including lunch boxes, bento boxes, cheese cutters, mini crock pot. With the text overlay Buncha Lunches Family Gift.

Buncha Lunches Useful Gifts for lunch time

We always start of the school year with new shiny lunchboxes and fancy foods. Right about this time of year half of our lunchboxes are stained or missing and I’ve run out of good ideas. A lunch refresher would make such an awesome gift that me and my kids would be excited about. There are even some things for dad in here! Here are some useful gifts for lunches that would be great for a family gift (or fun kid extra). (See pictures and links below the list)

VW Bus Lunchbox– Tell me this is not the coolest lunchbox? I think it is SO fun!

Little Bento Cookbook– New  tiny lunch inspiration. Because things that are little always taste better. My kids love Bento Box style lunches because they have variety and are fun to look at and eat.

Silicone Baking Cups– These are the perfect reusable containers for bento box lunches (and they are in fun shapes!)

Vegetable Cutter Set– This is an easy way to make kid lunches fun. This vegetable cutter set has a ton of fun shapes you can use for vegetables or cheese or bread. Kids love this (and it is easy!)

Kid Bentobox- This Bento box is one I’ve heard lots of great things about. What is great about them is that they don’t leak out things like apple sauce or yogurt.

Crockpot Lunch– This mini crockpot would be perfect for work. I would’ve loved this when I worked in an office! It keeps things warm (and probably makes your office smell great).

Adult Lunch Box– This lunch box is a great size for teens (if they will take a lunch box!) and adults. Stylish and the right size for lunches.

Insulated flask/Thermos– When your kids are sick of normal lunches these thermoses are a wonderful way to add variety. We heat water to boiling, put it in the thermos for as long as it takes to reheat the lunch (mac and cheese, spaghettios, soup, stew) and then their lunch is the perfect temperature.

Bentology Ice Pack 3 pack- Kids will love these ice packs and you will love that their lunches stay at a safe temperature.

Sweet Dreams Useful Gifts for bedtime

New Pajamas= serious happiness at our house. This sweet dreams family gift is full of useful gifts that are useful but also so fun! (See pictures and links after the descriptions).

Women’s Luxury Pajamas– HEAVENLY soft. I have these PJs in my cart. You should join me.

Men’s Flannel Sleep set– This set is fashionable and looks comfortable too. This would be great for teen boys as well.

Boys and Girls Pajamas– These PJs even glow in the dark.

Women’s whale slippers– Memory Foam + Whale=Awesome.

Men’s slippers– These are just the type of slipper my husband loves. A rubber sole but also warm and comfortable.

Cat night light– We bought this night light for my daughter and ALL of my kids fight over it. It is soft plastic, rechargeable and it changes color! Me-wow!

Constellation projector– Older kids will love this night light that projects actual constellations onto the ceiling. It’s like having your own planetarium.

A year full of stories– I love this book which contains 52 different stories from around the world. Imagine your family all dressed in new comfy PJs and slippers cozied up to listen to your special story each night. I love it!

Pictures of toothbrushes, tooth brush timers, flossers and mouth wash with a text overlay saying "Brusha Brusha Brusha family gift."

Brusha Brusha Brusha Useful Gifts for teeth brushing

It might seems strange but kids will love new toothbrushes, their own special toothpaste, flossers, tiny cups and maybe some special brushing timers (those are the cutest!) Here are some useful gifts that you could put into a Brusha Brusha Brusha gift. (Name that movie!)

Sonic Toothbrush– These toothbrushes are the best. There are lots of models but this is the one I have and it works great.

Elephant Toothbrush– Kids will love this super cute toothbrush and this one comes with a timer and a reusable cup for mouthwash. Adorable!

If the family has a little one, this gift set with baby toothbrushes (the kind you put on your finger) is perfect.

Fancy toothbrushes need their own fun toothpaste. Each of my kids have their own tube. Some fun options;

Shimmer and shine Toothpaste

Kids flossers– These flossers are the best brand we’ve tried (other ones we’ve tried have bad floss that breaks easily). They make flossing easier whether you are doing the flossing or hoping your kids get it done well by themselves.

Scope flosser– The grown-up version (they taste great!)

Listerine Smart Rinse– This mouth wash is only slightly minty and helps prevent cavities

Dixie Cup Holder– We have this cup holder and my kids use it for their mouth wash.

Here is a fancier version for the older people.

Toothbrush Timer 5-pack- These are the cutest and help your kids brush the correct amount of time.

This toothbrush timer has lights and music and can be mounted on the wall in the bathroom, super fun!

I hope these useful gifts will help you as you try to cross names off of your gift list. Do you need more gift ideas? Check these out!

Happy Gifting!

More Great Gift Ideas

Creative and useful gifts for everyone on your list!




These creative gift ideas are perfect for "Something you need" gifts. These gift ideas work great for kids, tweens, teens and adults.

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Michele Tripple

Wednesday 15th of November 2017

These are some great non toy gift ideas! Will. need to bookmark this as I am sure I will be buying some of these! Thanks for sharing at Confessions of Parenting #WanderingWednesday!

The Gifty Girl

Wednesday 15th of November 2017

Thank you Michele!!


Wednesday 15th of November 2017

You gave me some really great ideas!! I dread all the toys at Christmas, toys that will just sit around. I usually ask people to gift my kids experiences (i.e. a trip to the zoo, a lunch date, etc.) but I think I will use some of these to put on their list this year!!

The Gifty Girl

Wednesday 15th of November 2017

Thank so much Liz! Experiences are fun too. :)


Wednesday 15th of November 2017

You always have the most amazing ideas! I think the cereal one is so much fun. My kids are 13-20 (!) and I think they would still get a total kick out of the cereal dispenser! (And I love how you called it crunchy dessert. ha)

The Gifty Girl

Wednesday 15th of November 2017

You are so nice Jennifer! Thank you. :) And it is a delicious dessert, right? HAHA!

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