As my boys get older and older, it seems like the gifts get more expensive and harder to find cool stuff that is not always so mainstream. What I give to you below is a combination of things you could pull off the shelves of big box stores as well as some hidden gems of things you might not even know existed. I always think it is pretty cool when your kids are able to say, “Wow, I have never even heard of that before, it is great” which is always a satisfying experience for a parent. Go to the bottom of the post to check out the rest of our Christmas Guides from this year and prior years.
Now, in no particular order we have our 9 Year Old Boy and 7 Year Old Boy Christmas Gifts – 2012 Edition List.
Bop It! Smash – Over the past year this is the one game/toy that has gotten the most use of any today among all the age groups. That means from our 2-year-old all the way up to our…ok I can’t name ages here, but let it just be said that the grandparents love this as well. When we have a little get together or a few minutes before it is time to go somewhere, Bop It! Smash is a great entertainer. You have to try to click the two ends of the device together when the lights are in the middle and you score points. Seems easy enough but the light patterns change and get speedy. I currently hold the high score in the house and the kids are getting real close to beating me! The other nice thing is that this device is sturdy and has been dropped many time so far and has held up well.
GOOOOOOAL SOCCER GAME – I always look for games that the boys can play that are non electronic and harken back to simpler times. Well it was between Nok Hockey and this game, and I made the right choice! The kids sit opposite each other and have control of wooden pinball flippers to try to score a soccer goal on their opponent.
Ipod Touch Generation 5 – What kid doesn’t want some sort of Apple product for gaming first, and music second? Well we have been holding off, but with more and more of their friends having iPads or iPods Touch devices we decide this was going to be the year we made the plunge. Plus they are starting to get into listening to music and taking videos so this device will do it all. With the advent of these prank shows, I can only imagine what sort of videos I will be showing up on. Plus is allows them to be able to help us preserve memories of them for the future. We will be running a special article after the holidays on what cases you should be getting for the kids as well.
STRIKERZ Soccer Card Game – After the HUGE success we had with Jukem Football Card Game (it made multiple BSCKids awards list) and the fact we still play it, we decided we would give a Soccer Card Game a try. I mean both of our boys play soccer so it just stands to reason that this would be another game that they like to play.
Wild Animals Coloring Book (Dover Nature Coloring Book) – We always have the same old coloring books and coloring pages in the house and I think that it might be time for the kids to advance their coloring skills a bit. Well Dover Nature Coloring Books have gorgeous color pages in them and they are a bit more advanced then your regular coloring book. Now that isn’t to stay you have to stay in the lines, but if you want to go colored pencil with these rather than crayon it may be a good idea.
2 POUNDS OF A 12 Stone Mix from Madagascar rough gemstones – After getting the kids a rock tumbler a few holiday seasons ago, they are always on the lookout for stones that they want tumbled. The problem is they always want to tumble like 3 stones at a time when they find them so I figured if we bought some cool stones that needed to be tumbled they could choose their favorites and we could have a full hopper of stuff to tumble.
LEGO Lord of the Rings Game – Jammed packed full of goodness would be a understatement for LEGO Lord of the Rings. They have really outdone themselves with the amount of actions on the screen. Of all of the LEGO games so far this one really had us feeling we were part of a bigger adventure and movie. Our older son was more interested in playing than our younger son but that is to be expected. A great way to introduce them to Lord of the Rings and a great looking game that drives alongside a classic story. While you can complete the story there are so many fun extras to unlock that you can spend a nice amount of time exploring all the offerings of the Lord of the Rings Game. A game that is fun to play with the children and since LEGO violence is a far cry from other forms, we have characters breaking up into bricks and starting again which means the kids will have fun as well.
Carson MM-200 Carson Micromax LED 60X-100X LED Lighted Pocket Microscope – The boys are always investigating things and this is a product that is small enough for them to carry along with them in their adventures.
Bag-o-loot-The Irresistibly Fun Family Card Game – In case you can’t tell by the time you finish the end of this list we went real heavy on the card games this year. Bag-o-loot was one of the ones that made the list this year and we are looking forward to playing with the kids.
Beat The Parents Board Game – My kids love games where they can try to beat us at stuff. This has that in the title so they kids are going to LOVE it.
HEXBUG Track Plus Nano Bundle and HEXBUG Innovation First Warriors Battle Arena – One day it all just clicked and the glory of HEXBUG products reigned supreme in our house. The Hurricane Sandy allowed the boys to focus on some toys that they had and they realized how much fun those HEXBUG Nano products were. They raced them on the track and kept a little notebook full of the winners and losers. Well we thought they could use a little more track so we bought that bundle and from our look at Toy Fair and seeing how the kids interacted with the Nano products, we knew the Warriors would also be a hit. The great part about the Nanos is how much fun our 2-year-old daughter has playing with them with the boys…supervised of course.
LEGO Architecture Empire State Building (21002) and LEGO Architecture Rockefeller Plaza (21007) – LEGO systems where they can learn about famous buildings in New York? Sign us up to build some of these. Plus since you can buy sets with different amounts of pieces they can appeal to different age groups.
Nerf Vortex Pyragon Blaster – The Vortex blasters with the disc projectiles are the best. They fly further and seem to sting less if you are hit at close range. They also stay away from the eyes being a bit bigger, plus the biggest problem I had with the darts is that they can get stuck in the blaster and get damaged. With two of these the boys are going to have some fun Nerf Wars going on in the house.
Treasures and Traps : The Adventure Card Game – Wait what? Another card game? I am trying to find some games that last a bit longer for my older son and have some sort of fantasy type feel to them. It is tough to find games that fit that younger crowd range.
Official Nintendo Mario Plush Series Stuffed Toy – 5″ Bullet Bill – It’s a Nintendo year with the Wii being under the tree and the boys will be in full swing of wanting more Mario toys. Well Bullet Bill is the perfect size to attach to their book bags for school.
Dance Central 3 – Even though the Wii U made it to the list, the Kinect is still such a stunning product. We got started with Dance Central 1 and it was so much fun for our 7-year-old that he decided to enter hip hop dance class. The product has advanced and the newest version Dance Central 3 will be super fun in our house and a great way for the adults to get a little exercise also.
Rock & Crystal Excavation Kit – Since both boys love rocks, I thought this would be a fun way for them to get into some more rocks and crystals.
Castle Panic – Yes, you are not seeing things, another fantasy based card game for the kids. We will be playing them all to see how much fun they are, but when you have monsters and swords can you really go wrong?
ThinkFun Knot So Fast – There are going to be times in your life where tying a knot may make a difference and I figure since my kids are not in Boy Scouts maybe a game will be helpful to them. Plus, it looks like it will be a lot of fun.
MindWare Extreme Dot to Dots Legends and Lore – Connect the dots for the older kids. I think it will be fun for my older son to sit and do this during some of his “down” time.
Sweet Spot Shoe Bands – I don’t know how many times a kid’s soccer cleats can have the laces come undone in a season, but if there was a record for it, we may have set it with our 7-year-old. These are cool bands that go over your shoes to keep your laces in place and also show you where you should be kicking the ball with your foot.
SKLZ Star Kick Soccer Trainer – If you do not have a lot of room to kick around a soccer ball this could be your product. I have seen a lot of brothers and sisters use it on the sideline when one of their siblings is playing a game. You don’t have to worry about the soccer ball getting kicked onto the field by mistake, which is good for 7 and 9 year olds that may not have super great control.
Scallywags – Pirates and gold coins always makes for a fun game, but when you add in some really funny pirate cards to shake up the action you have a winner. This is our go to board game recently because it does not take a long time to play, you can play with all different number of people, and it is really fun and tactile at the same time. You try to collect the coins with the highest number on them, but some will be face down to make it a bit harder. Plus the people you are playing with may use some pirate cards to make it all that harder for you to win the game. One of our most sought after games to play after Toy Fair last year as well.
Random Puzzles – Our 7-year-old has really been into puzzles lately so we decided to pick him up some different size Ravensburger puzzles for the holiday.
Wii U – This was a no brainer for us after seeing it at NYCC 12 this year. The system is just plain fun…add the ability to play against each other with the tablet screen and it’s a winner. Mario in HD, that should be enough for everyone.
Skylanders Giants – We went and reviewed this game and the most telling quote I had for the year was that this game is like the second season of your favorite show coming back on the air. There will be a lot of Skylanders products including the Mega Bloks, puzzles and such underneath Christmas trees this year.
For some more ideas for your kids you can look at our 8 Year Old and 6 Year Old Christmas Gift Guide from last year which has a mix of different toys. The boys both have birthdays around the holiday season so we have to get them enough gifts to last the year! BSCKids has bunches of different BSCKids Holiday Gift Guides if you children are different ages, and they all should have gifts that can span the ages. Do you have any toys you would add to our 9 Year Old Boy and 7 Year Old Boy Christmas Gifts – 2012 Edition?