By Katie Moosbrugger and Rachel Hoeing

Do you feel like the Easter bunny brings the same things every year? And are you tired of all the candy and plastic “junk” that’s usually found inside your child’s baskets? We feel the same way, so today we’re sharing ideas on how to fill an Easter basket with items your child will actually use! We took a little shopping trip to see what we could find  – and in doing so – we came up with the idea to “theme” our Easter baskets. Not only did we stuff our baskets with useful items, but we also did it all within budget — and we think they turned out pretty cute!

Another way to change things up this year is to surprise your kids with an Easter morning scavenger hunt. For those of you who hide your baskets in the morning, this could be a fun twist. Build your scavenger hunt with little messages, riddles or codes hidden inside plastic eggs (or give the little ones pictures instead of words for clues) and have the trail go all over the house and outdoors! When they finally discover their basket, they’ll be overjoyed and worn out and you can blame it all on a crazy, creative Easter bunny 🙂

Here are the fun themed basket ideas that we created …


“The Art Lover” Easter Basket

Start with a “basket” that can serve a dual purpose.  This container shown above can serve as an Easter basket and then be used to store your art lover’s supplies. If you want to make the basket a little more festive, tie a Easter bow around it, fill it with Easter grass and plastic eggs. Another idea is to order a basket from Thirty-One Gifts. These can be used to store many things after the Easter surprise!

In this art lover’s basket we have filled it with the obvious items such as scissors, glue, markers and paints.  A few other things we found that your child will be sure to love are the American Girl crafts. These can be found online or at your local Target store, Michael’s, or AC Moore. They are reasonably priced craft kits and the final products are adorable.  Other items to fill your art lover’s basket can be tickets to a local museum, gift cards for your local arts & crafts store, art smocks/aprons, or even a gift certificate for an art class. (We have great classes offered in the Triad that you can find here.)



“The Ready for Kindergarten” Easter Basket

This is a great idea for anyone who has a child entering Kindergarten next year. Kids can get a little nervous about jumping to big school, so this is a fun way to build up excitement. Again, we chose to use a mufti-purpose “basket.” This time we chose a backpack to hold the Easter morning surprises. This basket is filled with plenty of items to keep your child busy during Spring Break and Summer! We chose items such as Kindergarten activity books, Kindergarten interactive computer games, Step Into Reading starter books, pencils, rulers, a wipe-board where they can practice letters, flashcards, etc. Another favorite is “The Night Before Kindergarten” book by Natasha Wing. Of course you will want to throw in a few non-school related items as well like a stuffed animal or toy.



“The Ready for Spring & Summer Baskets”

This theme is so easy to build upon. There are a ton of items you can add to baskets to get your child ready for both spring and summer. For my daughter, she is in need of a new bathing suit and flip flops, so those were the first items stuffed in her basket. Then I added a pair of sunglasses, some spring flower seed packs, a large chocolate bunny (a must every year), a spring craft (Decorate Your Own Corkboard from RoseArt), and lots of jelly beans that are sitting at the bottom of the basket. For my son, his basket includes new pair of flops, a Spiderman bathing suit, Spiderman dive sticks for the pool, a large chocolate bunny and a craft from Rose Art (build and paint your own wooden insects), and Window Markers from Crayola. My neighbor’s sons have these and they stay occupied for hours drawing designs on her glass front storm door (it all washes off easily!).

Other items that would be cute to add to a basket of this theme include suntan lotion, pool googles, a hat, a small watering can and gloves for the budding gardener, lip balm, sand toys, bubbles, water balloons, and the list can go on. Plus, instead of a basket – pull it all together in a new beach bag or sand pail that they can use over and over again. How cute would that be?

Have you ever created a themed Easter basket? Are you planning one this year? Share your ideas and suggestions, as well as other ways to keep the season fun and fresh for the kids!