I’ve been procrastinating on the whole Easter basket thing. The last thing my kids need is a ton of candy and junk — and of course, in the grand scheme of things, there are much more important things to focus on for this holiday.
However, I know my kids would be super disappointed if there wasn’t a little something for them all, so I headed to Walmart to see what kind of basket I could put together that contains useful items while sticking to a budget of about $5 per child.
Not only did I manage to pull it off, but I also snagged 84 plastic eggs and a couple of bags of candy for an egg hunt, something my kids have been asking to do.
A few tips for staying within a budget:
- I only purchased one large basket for all five kids, a steal at just $2! They won’t miss having individual baskets at all, plus both the basket and eggs can be reused year after year.
- Pay attention to quantities and pricing. I had first picked up five 12-count bags of plastic eggs priced at $0.97 each before I spied the 42-count bags priced at only $1.97. I ended up with 24 additional eggs for $0.91 less!
- Think outside of the box when shopping. I found the chalk, bubbles, and balloons in the toy department much cheaper than in the Easter section at the front of the store. The hi-bounce balls came from the party favors aisle, just $2 for a package of eight! And Twizzlers aren’t typical Easter candy fare, but I snagged them in the grocery section candy aisle.
It’s a little difficult to see everything I got, but here’s what I found:
- 8 hi-bounce balls
- 3 double-packs of water bombs balloons (biodegradable!)
- 8 Miracle Bubbles
- 1 Crayola Easter Egg and Chick Chalk (6 ct.)
- 1 Crayola Sidewalk Chalk (20 ct.)
- 6 packs of Trident Gum
- 1 Twizzlers Bites package
- 1 Jolly Ranchers Jelly Beans package
- 1 Bamboo Easter basket
- 1 Easter grass (biodegradable!)
- 84 plastic eggs
My total for everything came in at just $27.23, and I know the kids will have many hours of fun playing outside with the various items I chose! I’ve seen many chocolate and candy-laden baskets selling for upwards of $20 each lately, so I’m thrilled with going the DIY route.
Disclosure: I am a participant in the Walmart Moms program. Walmart has provided me with compensation for the time and effort spent creating this post. However, my participation in this program is voluntary and my opinions are my own — always have been, always will be.
You could still individualize for each kid by putting candy in the eggs. I collect small gifts like lego like action figures and pet shop pets on clearance to put in the eggs. My favorite reusable easter baskets are “movie popcorn pop’n’serve tubs”.
I love the pop’n’serve tubs idea! I’m planning to put the candy in the eggs, and I was also thinking about putting some loose change in a few of them as an extra surprise.
I too went the mostly candy free route :) I used the 3.00 off Toy Story 3 Operation game to snag it for 2.00, 4.00 of Connect 4 travel to score it for 2.24 I think. For 12.00 I got the dual lane Whamm-O Slip and Slide (which she will LOVE) Also got some bubbles and I did get a LARGE Krabby patty candy thing. I don’t use baskets generally. My mom always got us something useful. So this year it was a cute wicker purse :)
NICE going on your purchase! We re-use our eggs too!
since they do so much egg hunting with school at this age, I buy the big bags of eggs at the end of the season and put them up with the baskets and other easter decorations. Then I have enough to send to school the next year and a few for each boys baskets as well!
Did much better than I did, i spent around 35… I did manage to get a bunch of stuff though and with coupons. I used the 1/2 mars coupons for snicker eggs, 1/2 chocolate peeps, 1.00 of color wonder product that was on clearance. And then sahme on me paid full price for “thomas” eggs and 2 other toys….
what is in those thomas eggs? i couldnt bring myself to pay full price when i didnt know what i was getting because it did not really seem to say on the wrapper?
I was thinking outside the box also, I went to kroger and got some good deals on toys but had to give them a little candy, most everything was on sale. I have 3 boys so they will love the things I bought, airplanes bouncy balls kites finger paint. 3 bird houses from joann fabric, for them to paint.
Good job. I didn’t spend much more but I’ve had most of the stuff since last year. I bought the Thomas wooden trains and some Thomas eggs after Easter last year when they were 75% off. (my son loves Thomas) and then used my Mars coupons for the candy this year. We also reuse eggs and baskets.
OK, so maybe I’m a cheapo, but I reuse the baskets, grass and plastic eggs every year! I just hide them away once everythings taken out and save them for the next time the Easter Bunny comes around! I also do movies in the baskets because we don’t buy movies ‘just for fun’, SO I buy them on sale and squirrel them away for holidays or birthdays. Tangled, Megamind and Bambi will be in each of 3 baskets! :)
Nothing cheapo about it – my parents reused our baskets and grass! With eight kids, they had to economize somehow, and each of us was happy with our own basket!
My sister and I hand the same Easter baskets and grass (the eggs were also many time reused) for 20 years. We were so sad went my mom tossed them. We thought they were special and looked forward to them every year. Still wish I had it. She said they got old. :(
I agree about you not being a cheap-o.
My 11 year old is still using the basket that I used as a child which is the one my mom received as a child and it thrills her to use it.
Not a cheapo. We are still using the eggs my mom used when we were little (some anyway) It’s funny because they have mine and my sisters names on some of them. LOL
We reuse our eggs and either a basket around the house or container the girls already have. Add a pink ribbon to anything and they love it! I try to get a few bags of candy and then coins to put in the eggs. We do not do “gift/toy baskets”. I did as a child, by my husband didn’t and after talking about what we want to focus on for the holiday, we decided to not do the gifts and just do a simple egg hunt. We do the resurrection cookies and rolls the night before, read and talk about the resurrection egg set we have and then have a nice extended family lunch/dinner after church.
We had a great idea this year. We bought jumping balls that kids sit on and bounce all over the house. We added a few jelly beans to the basket and a note from the Easter bunny asking the children to hop like him. We were hoping for more fun and less treats.
PS-our bunny came last week and the kids have been bouncing all over the house.
I reuse the basket, grass and eggs. Talk about cheapo………I’m using candy in the eggs that he’s already received one time! Two Hot Wheels cars and Crayola on the Go picked up at Wags for next to nothing, bag of pencils and sunflower kit (dollar bin at Target). Coins in the gold egg. Peanut butter chocolate bunny picked up at RA on sale and toy planes that were on clearance for $0.25 each at RA. Most expensive item………little bunny picked up at the bank for a $5 donation to the Cancer Society!
I went the “things to do on a rainy day \” route i used 40% any reg price item couons for Micheals and picked a lot of $1 craft items for my two children to kee them busy since its raining cats and dogs here in ohio lol, I also used the 1/2 mars for some candy filled eggs
Oh, I know, Heather — I am SO tired of all this rain!
Heather I too and tired of rain here in NE Ohio but having 6 kids and all still liek little stuff form the bunny although only youngest 10yr still believes..what doe you all do for teens?? Skipped the big chocoalte bunnies this year and just got single candly treats ect but what can you do for teens thats inexpensive?
I bought the girls sand pails instead of baskets. Used coupons and CVS ECBs to buy the candy and items I put in the pails. I think they will be THRILLED to see what the Easter bunny left!
ONE basket for 4 kids! I couldn’t imagine not giving each child their own special basket with items just for them. One dinky basket with next to nothing in it would be a let down to any kid I know and to have to share it with 3 other siblings?! There’s are ways to get real gifts/toys on at bargain prices to make the Easter morn to see what the bunny left exciting. Shop for weeks before at the clearance prices that can be found at amazon and toys r us,ect. and one can find much better then spending $2 for bouncing balls. Like pp who got large games for that cost. That makes a wow basket and then some. Of course reusing eggs and baskets are a way to not spend money, duh. Feeling pleased with the bounty I have for very little$ that will be shared with many with each getting their own that was thought of them just for them. You got work at it, not one trip for a sad looking basket of cheapo junk.
Actually, it’s one basket for FIVE kids, and yes, I’m perfectly happy with what I was able to put together. My kids will enjoy time outdoors with toys that promote creativity.
And besides, I don’t want them to get the impression that Easter is all about candy and toys… :)
@Tara…CREATIVITY, that is the magic word. I love how you think. More Mother’s should think this way. Kids need this. IMO…that is what wrong now. Gift giving cost money and kids think it some magic to it. How many toys can one have? Buy something to use the “MIND” your kids will think you later for this.
It’s a great basket, T! I like that you included things that will not be tossed or quickly broken :)
My deprived children receive nothing from me at Easter. My mother makes them a basket with “useful” things like colors and a coloring book, things to use for school, etc. She does include a few pieces of candy and animal crackers, but she does that with my blessing. And, she *maybe* spends $6-$8 per basket.
The only other Easter goodies my kids get are candy from the church egg hunt and then money and a little bit of candy when we hunt eggs with Shane’s family. (And, I go through and toss as much of this as I can get away with… they end up with waaayyyy too much sugar!)
My children have NEVER complained about the so-called lack of Easter gifts. They know Easter isn’t about gifts or goodies. They have never expected it to be about that.
It’s all about what you teach your children to expect… Just my two cents.
So you assume those that who give Easter gifts don’t know how to be creative or give your so-called “useful” gift items? The poster who gave a trampoline, that sounds useful to me. But you must be the expert, or maybe not since you make your mother give your children a basket
Pretty disgusted with your comment. Easter is NOT about the toys. I’m probably even worse as I refuse to buy my kids Easter gifts…not every holiday is about giving gifts and it really irritates me that people think that!
Mandi @ Life...Your Way
I agree! I think this is a super cute way to do Easter for siblings!!
(We don’t do Easter baskets at all, and my kids don’t feel “let down”…the last thing I want to do is raise kids with entitlement issues!)
entitlement issues has nothing to do with getting an easter basket or gifts. But it sure sounds like you know what your talking about. That no basket idea from ones own family will be certain to teach ’em.
Myra @ The Casabella Project
I couldn’t agree more!!!
I’m disgusted that you make assumptions that those who give gifts at Easter don’t know or teach their children what Easter is about. So sorry your irritated that some parents enjoy the hunt for gifts they know their children will like and also enjoy seeing how excited their children and the other children they give these gifts to get.
Ok normally I don’t comment but I really feel its not what you said but how you said it and the fact you basically insulted and degraded the person who’s blog this is is wrong. I do one for each like you and enjoy the hunt but I feel like you should respect that not everyone does this and has other viewpoints. But like the blog owner I do try to keep costs down..I have 6 and just lost my job and we are struggling……so since you have some ideas what do you suggest for teens…I have a budget of $15 each 3 girls and one boy.( My younger two were easy with a few small things such as cards they collect , art supply ect.) BTW only 1 girl is girly and for her I plan to do a makeup or hair acessory or two ect.
I agree also, I think each kid should have their own basket. We reuse the same basket every year and the kids use them often. They have fun leaving the empty baskets out the night before and seeing what the bunny will bring. I think it starts a tradition having your own basket and using the same one helps that along. Spent $12/per kid, which includes candy, dvd, toy, and book each. I fill my reused plastic eggs with lose candy (skittles, gummy bears/worms, stickers, etc).
Curoius as to how you spent only $12 each ….here where I live a paperback book cost $6 or more and the DVD is cheap(most they want are newer and cost $15-$20 each) on sale is from $5-$10 and then a toy too? Do tell you secrets since these are the kind of things I thought for my teens but have budget of $15 each…thanks for any tips you can give me .
I like the savings that everyone has/is sharing. I’m right there w/most of you as I reuse the eggs, grass and plastic eggs too. Both of my girls had an egg hunt at their school so we use/reuse those eggs and buy them on the cheap if we need more. I bought a 12 pack of eggs for $0.69 a few weeks ago and some pretty good individual sized candies for only $0.39 each (life saver jelly beans, russell stover creme eggs and 2 small boxed chocolate bunnies). They also had the smaller mult-packs of peeps at 2/$1.00 so it was kind of like a buy one get one free. We didn’t want to put too much chocolate candy in their baskets given that they had some from the egg hunt at school so I picked up a bag of individually wrapped fruit snacks, fruit flavored tootsie rolls and a bag of gummy bears at the local dollar store for $1.00 each. I’m using these for our egg hunt and threw a few of them in their baskets. As for toys, my husband and I are suckers, but we’re bargain hunters too and found quite a few good deals, again at walgreens a while back, when toys were half off or more! We got a Barbie VW bug for $9.99 and a Mickey Mouse board book set (12) for $4.99. We bought them some Easter outfits too, but not your typical Easter dress and dress shoes, instead we hit the Walmart and found some cute, spring colored shirts and short for $3.50 each. Overall we are happy with our purchases and know that we did our best to get our kids something they will like; and since they are 4 and 2 they are still pretty easy to please and we are glad to do so on the cheap! Happy Easter all :)
First, some people are just plain rude!!
Now on to what we did….my girls dont really eat candy that much, so I got 16 of the skittles/m&m eggs at walgreens for free last week (there favorite candy) and then bought them each two little digging toys for outside, a little water bucket, and spray bottle from the $1 bin at target. I got them each a little straw purse from walgreens (2/$5), some marshmallow twists, and my big splurge was hello kitty and princess bubbles. I wouldnt have bought those, but one of my daughters kept asking if the Easter bunny would please bring her something hello kitty lol! I was actually glad to save all the money from not buying tons of candy. Now this year for Easter, they got a trampoline for the backyard. This is NOT a normal thing, but I stay home with them, and they needed something to keep them busy over the summer, and they love trampolines. Couldn’t give it to them for Christmas with snow all over the ground lol! I can’t wait to see there faces in the morning when they finally see it all set up in the yard. We did buy it on sale at sams, so at least it wasn’t full price lol!
I would love to do the one basket idea, but there’s no way two five year old girls would allow that to happen…they are very protective of there own things haha!!
well myself i cant see sharing one basket , but its better than getting nothing, but think outta the box, you could take left over christmas wrap and wrap inside out so white is on outside and decorate the box after wrapping put in grass and wholla extra special baskets at no cost . i have gifts to wrap for easter and that is what i did , sure noone will care they have the xmas theme underneath, also this year i had buy eggs , but got on sale at price chopper for .50 a bag as i lost track of last years after easter ones i swore i had in closet lol. but i didnt buy a ton of candy, but got my son his favorite toddler snacks id buy normally, so wasnt a extra cost and made of real fruit is better for him. i did add a tootsie bank and 1.00 strip of kit kats , i bought most my candy in the regular candy isle . you get 10 small candy bars / m&m and such for 1.00 and there individually wrapped. another healthy option was pouches of brothers all natural freeze dried fruit , and they have cute characters on them at only .82 a bag at walmart. also can shop the dollar store. start with a sand pail and shovel they will use all summer. they have great out door toys as well, art supplies , puzzles jump ropes you name it , also cute mylar ballons, you can tie to there baskets , other ideas i put in my lil ones basket were i got him pj pals on sale at disney and sunglasses from disney , my boys are 18 , 15 and 2 . so the older ones cost alot more . such as candy and video games etc . or gift cards/cash. so i felt bad about the baby getting smaller toys and splurged on a few bigger toys and bought him a new flat screen tv and dvd player for his room and a little tykes adjustable basketball hoop and a bike ekkks !! overkill! but definately not the norm for my house. normally when my older 2 boys were little like 5 and 2 they each got a basket full of mostly toys like playdoh and markers , bubbles and such . and a stuffed bunny . and then have a hunt for candy and clues to a toy prize at the end like a treasure hunt, as they got only the basket was there prize and became a tradition that the easter bunny would hide there basket and they have to find at the end of the hunt as some eggs had numbered clues inside , was great fun and i still have many photos of them ,
One little basket for five kids, I guess it would be better than nothing.
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I think some people are missing the point. In my opinion, Easter shouldn’t be about the gifts. I think your kids will love the basket Tara! Most of all they will remember the family memories made!
I agree! Easter is another holiday that has turned into a gift-giving extravaganza. If a family believes in giving gifts, fine, and if a family doesn’t that’s fine too.
“quote” I think some people are missing the point.
NO, the OP wrote a budget post of putting together a basket, not about the meaning of Easter. Or how those who get a smaller basket or shared basket will suddenly be enlightened by the true meaning of Easter. Where did you get that teaching the point of Easter was part of making a gift basket?
I wait until monday after and usually go and everything will be marked way down. My kids don’t mind waiting to get something from me because they have a big day with an Easter egg hunt at their Grandma’s every year.
It’s a great basket, Tara..all things that will actually get some use this spring/summer! Great to know that you can put such a thing together at such a low cost with almost no planning!!
I actually picked up a lot of great ideas from the comments and next year I know will be a cheaper easter for us! But more importantly maybe everyone should ask their children what easter is truly about and my guess is those children who do get smaller baskets / share baskets will understand its not the candy, toys, eggs, and bunny!!
What? why the assumption that a child who gets more would not live in a loving religious family who teaches what Easter is about? Having an abundance does not = ignorance. Example Princess Di or Prince William, look at the life Prince William has led and the life of not wanting for anything, but that did not equate to him growing up to being less compassionate.
Knowing the meaning the real meaning of Easter is can be found by those who both have or got a little or a lot.
I’ve reused the eggs, baskets, and grass for years now. My “kids” are 16 and 21, but I still have fun making them baskets. I’ve learned over the years that the candy (especially jelly beans) never get eaten (OK, maybe the chocolate : ) ). This year I decided to get more practical items for them: Body washes, razors, socks, gum, tweezers, beef jerky; you get the gist. I’ve gotten almost everything very cheap with my couponing! I think when all was said and done I spent about $25 (the bigger baskets for the kids, smaller baskets for me and my hubby).
I like the one basket for the family… But my kids are used to having their own baskets so I would probably hurt my teenagers feelings thinking his little sister was the only one I remembered.
We always reuse our baskets, eggs and grass. The kids really dont’ remember from one year to the next. I try to go light on the candy, but this year there was so many free coupon deals I ended up with 4 free chocolate peeps ane 12 free snickers eggs The kids got bubble wands, kite flingers and bunny gyroscopes. Plus a movie each. I know that sounds eggstravagant. But most of the small toys were filler items I got with my wags deals. Movies were on sale or a coupon deals. We also have a rule in our house… The first time a movie is opened the whole family has to be together for family Movie night. (Makes it more special and it is also cheap entertainment for one evening).
I love that tradition for new movies. That’s definitely something we need to implement here!
Some people should practice the saying “if you don’t have anything nice to say – don’t say anything at all”!!! Whatever works for you and your family – no one should judge! Easter is about Christ rising again – NOT the candy and presents. I personally try to do more gifts – useful things like flash cards, markers, coloring/activity books, little hot wheel cars and some free iron man toys that I got at Walmart. I also make sure to put some candy in there also, but they get enough candy at the egg hunt – I always end up throwing away their halloween candy too because they forget about it. Another cute idea I heard was a “theme basket” – take it and individualize it – like a sand bucket with sand toys, new towel, water toys, or a craft basket with arts and craft items, or whatever… Happy belated Easter everyone – hope everyone had a great day – weather turned out beautiful :)
“quote” Some people should practice the saying “if you don’t have anything nice to say – don’t say anything at all”!!! – no one should judge!
sounds like a contradiction. not judging but then you judged my comments and had to make a point of saying what you thought!
The original post was about putting together a basket. Why does one assume a child who might get a more extravagant Easter bounty would NOT know the real reason for Easter and the importance of the holiday?? Sounds like an excuse to give to put down the comments from a mom who enjoys getting numerous deals over time to make the haul bigger. The naysayer trying make one’s self feel better because one didn’t take the time, maybe doesn’t have the time or doesn’t care to gather lots of items. Also to assume that “your” smaller items are better and those who give more doesn’t give creative items or items that get those out moving, ridiculous. I love the PP who admitted to giving a trampoline. But why do those who planned and gave more feel the need to make a point that “oh, this isn’t the norm”. Why do you feel like it’s a bad thing to say that you did have a large amount to give?
KEL has issues… and a bit of a temper… LOL. Lighten up!