Ours are rarely hung (let alone, by the chimney with care) but it IS a thoughtful process of what goes inside them! Some times I find myself overwhelmed trying to fill them up with enough "goodies." Then it occurred to me one day, the stockings don't HAVE to be full. But if I am really determined to load them up, there are many, many options besides candy to fill them up and will leave the kids (and significant others) happy!
I always put some type of food in the stockings but it doesn't have to all be candy. In fact, I would highly recommend keeping it to the fewest amount of "treats" possible. Here are some ideas to consider..
- Nuts - My kids love cashews. Try to get the nuts raw to roast yourself or at least without salt.
- Jerky - Try to find some without sugar, gluten, and soy... or make your own!
- Dark Chocolate - The darker the chocolate, the better! My go-to is dark chocolate covered almonds from Thrive Market. They are really yummy & are much lower in sugar.
- Whole fruit - Anything could go here, from oranges to apples to kiwis, to bananas!
- Dried Fruit - Try to find dried fruit that doesn't have additional sugar added. Many fruits when dried are plenty sweet, like mangos, apples, peaches, & pineapple. I get most of mine at Trader Joe's.
- Coconut Oil Chips - Jackson's Honest Chips make some cute little bags of chips that I've seen at Whole Foods.
- Protein Bars - The brands I like best are Lara Bars, Exo Bars, Primal Kitchen Grass-fed Collagen Bars, or Epic Bars (most of these can be found at a lower cost on Thrive).
- Olives - Most people I knew growing up, got an orange in the bottom of their stocking. We got a can of olives and were super excited to have one all to ourselves!
What kid, or even big kid/adult, doesn't want more toys? They will have to be small, of course, to fit in a stocking but here are some ideas:
- Small books
- Non-toxic Toenail Polish
- Stuffed Animals
- Glow Sticks
For those old enough...
- Cards Games
- Travel games
- Gift cards
- Fun socks
- Puzzles/Brain teasers
- A fun note to start a Christmas Scavenger Hunt!