The Mama Goose Guide to Gift Giving

March 21, 2011


Does it seem to anyone else that spring brings with it an unusually large number of celebratory gatherings —  birthday parties, baby showers, and the like?  It’s not that the number of new babies and old babies aging is actually greater in this season (in fact, August is typically the month in which the most babies are born, let no one say this blog never taught you anything.)  Maye it’s just that winter makes it hard to gather together to be festive, what with everyone stuck indoors, and so it’s only when spring comes around that people are really in the partying mood.

Whatever the reason for the season, this is the time of year when customer after customer comes running into the Goose looking for a gift.  Just in case you wanted to do a little prep work in advance, may I present the Complete Goose Gift Giving Guide.

For the New Mama & Baby: The Baby Shower Gift

There are two general options for gift giving at the Goose.  You can either select one big item as a present, or put together an assortment of smaller items.  If you want to go (really) big, may we suggest our cloth diapering sample pack.  Perfect for the mama-to-be planning to try cloth diapering for the first time, our sampler package ($130) includes 6 Chinese prefold diapers, 2 Bummis covers, 1 Motherease diaper cover, 1 6-pack of wipes or 1 package of flushable liners, 1 colored Motherease fitted diaper, 2 Motherease unbleached cotton fitted diapers, 1 Made@Home fleece diaper cover, and 2 Motherease all-in-one diapers.  Or, there’s always the Ergo.

If you’re not looking to go quite as big, we suggest assembling a few of the items below in one of our complimentary gift bags or a Shagbark Studio fabric basket (pictured above, mama vendor profile to come later this week.)

*Bamboo washcloths by Punkinbutt, the softest things ever made in the history of the world.  They’re so wonderful that we buy a batch every time a new kid comes to stay.  Plus, as I discovered last summer, they are excellent for soaking up all kinds of bodily fluids (not only the diaper-changing variety, but the my-toddler-split-her-head-open-and-is-gushing-blood variety.)  They’re at the Goose in packages of 3 for $7.98.

*Organic cotton toys by Under the Nile. These are great shower gifts because they’re adorable in the way that new babies are adorable, eliciting automatic gushes and exclamations of “awww!”  Also, they are perfect for wee ones as they start grasping and then teething since they can go from baby’s mouth to the washing machine and then right back to baby.  My littlest  spent much of her first year grasping an Under the Nile banana, but my new favorites are the Harmony Dolls, pictured at right.

*Nuzzle Me Strap Covers. Locally made by papa vendor Tim, these strap covers come in bright and engaging prints to fit a variety of baby carriers and give baby something to chew on that can be easily removed and then cleaned before baby’s next outing.  Are we detecting a washable theme here?  At the Goose, we believe that easy to clean is a new mama’s dream.  (At least, I do.  I just made that up.  I’ll have to poll the rest of the goslings to see if they’re on board with the mantra.)

*Charlie’s Soap. Although at first pass laundry soap may seem too dull for a baby shower gift, I can guarantee you that the recipient will thank you several months down the road, when it’s three in the morning and he or she is completely out of burp cloths or blankets or diapers and hasn’t had time or ener gy to leave the house in two days and finally discovers the bag of Charlie’s Soap that you included with your shower gift.

*Cloth Wipes. These are a fun and colorful addition to any gift basket.  Locally made and environmentally friendly, the Goose sells these wipes in packs of 12 for $12.98.

*Naaci Cloth Diapers. Our newest made at home cloth diaper, these are each one-of-a-kind and made from reclaimed fabrics.  One of these makes a great gift even if you don’t know the new mama’s diapering plans.

For Big (and Not so Big) Kids: The Birthday Party Gift

I’m rarely at the Goose pre-party with enough time to spare to assemble a gift bag, so I’ve become a one-piece-gift kind of girl.   My personal favorites are locally made capes by Made@home mama or SewingMommy, or aprons by Sparks (aka our amazing manager Larkin.)  Cooperative games by Family Pastimes, Elaine Griffin tutus, and Barbara Engstrom dance skirts are also huge hits.  Someday, though, when I magically get my life together and am not running around like a mama chicken missing her proverbial head, I’ll put together a thoughtful gift bag with some of the items below, just like this amazing customer:

Mama Moreen, giver of gifts extraordinaire

Moreen began with a Shagbark Studios basket and filled it with:

*North Star Toys. Moreen selected a wooden rattle, car, and the popular “3 Men in a Tub” by this New Mexico-based company.  We also carry North Star magic wands and helicopters and some other fun things.

Some other great options for a birthday basket:

*Country Kids socks. Although socks are not ordinarily an exciting birthday gift, these are not your ordinary socks.  With great designs from stripes to rocket ships, these are exactly the kind of socks kids like to see on their feet.

*Magic Shoe laces. On sale for $.98, these brightly-colored shoe laces will jazz up any old pair of shoes.  They also go great with the socks mentioned above.

*Ouchie Sacks and Pillows by Sparks. These rice-filled bags (handmade with love by our lovely Larkin) are designed to soothe the boo-boos of birthday boys and girls all year round.  A big step up from your regular old ice pack.

*Twig Crayons. People love our twig crayons (2 for $1.98) as a last minute addition to an everyday purchase, and they’re just that much better when thrown in with a gift.

*Wild Apple Toys. Locally made in Trumansburg, these wooden toys range from snakes on wheels to whale piggy banks and pull-string winged dragons.

Pick up a handmade card (we carry designs by two local mamas) at the register, and your gift is ready to go.  Shopping season made easy, just for you!  Now let’s all  go have some cake.

-Meryl at the Goose


One Response to “The Mama Goose Guide to Gift Giving”

  1. amber Says:

    I love this post! Mostly because it is beautifully written and has so many much-needed gift ideas, but also because it shows a customer filling one of my baskets with other little goodies from around the store, which is exactly what I hoped people would do! Such a fun post for so many reasons, thanks Meryl!!

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