9 In Life

I’m A Cool Aunt: My Gift Idea For a 3 Year Old

There are two things I know in life to be true: 1. Buying gifts for nieces and nephews is harder than it looks and 2. I’m a cool aunt. Thankfully, the latter makes up for the struggle that #1 brings, because somehow we always come up with something fun! Or maybe we just think it’s fun? Either way, it’s a joy to shop for them and I thought I’d share our latest “win” in the gifting department!

gift idea for 3 year old boy diy herb garden

Last weekend we traveled to Nashville to celebrate our nephew’s 3rd birthday! What do you buy for a 3 year old that he doesn’t already have? I mean, he’s our fourth nephew, and each time we’ve always hit a roadblock around the 3rd birthday. For some reason it’s a tough age to buy for! They’re not babies or really toddlers anymore, but they not quiiiiiite “kids” yet and by this point they’ve usually got every toy under the sun. So, YA GOTSTA GET CREATIVE!

For Henry’s birthday this year, we knew we wanted to get him something that could be his, since lately all of the attention has been about baby brother, Sutton. And, we figured something that could get him out of the house, and out of Mom’s way while she’s busy nursing, might be a good idea. Henry has been loving helping his Daddy work out in the yard lately, so we quickly decided to go with an outside theme. I was browsing through Target one day with Adeline, and ended up in the seasonal gardening section when inspiration struck!

His own garden! What better way for a little boy to get outside, play with dirt, take ownership over something, and even LEARN, than by starting his own little mini garden? A little dorky? Maybe. But it’s a gift that will last for months, and he’ll get to watch his little creations grow, then use them when they’re ready.

Here’s what all I picked out for him to get started:

  • Gardening tools – kid friendly shovel, etc.
  • Gardening hat – to protect from the sun
  • Gardening gloves – to match Daddy
  • 3 cup plastic planter
  • Watering bucket
  • 3 kinds of herbs – mint, basil, and cilantro

We decided to go with herbs because, hello, easy! We’ve grown mint, basil, and cilantro on our back porch several times and always enjoy being able to actually put them to use. Fresh mint in water? Check. Fresh basil on pizza? Check. Fresh cilantro for taco night? Heck yes!

diy herb garden for little kids

I wish we lived closer so that I could go over and help him with his little garden, and it breaks my heart that I can’t. But I know we’ll get plenty of pictures when it comes time to plant those bad boys! Shopping for nephews may be tough, but I think we hit the nail on the head with this one!

Love you, henry!


The Cool Aunt.

What are your unique gift ideas for 3 year olds? Do you like to garden? Did you like to play outside when you were little?



  • Reply
    Jana @ Happy Wife Healthy Life
    March 10, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    Love the gardening tools idea! That is absolutely on my to-do list for next spring: planting my own little garden!
    Jana @ Happy Wife Healthy Life recently posted…FriYAY Week 9My Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      March 10, 2017 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks girl! Me too!! Well, if we ever get moved to a new house, ha!

  • Reply
    Heather @Lunging Through Life
    March 10, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    That’s such a fun idea!! Seriously props to you for coming up with that!
    Heather @Lunging Through Life recently posted…Let’s Play Catch UpMy Profile

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      March 13, 2017 at 10:56 pm

      Hahaha I would like to pay myself on the back for sure 😉 it’s hard to buy for little kids!

  • Reply
    March 14, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    I love this!! So much more meaningful than another toy.

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      March 16, 2017 at 9:44 am

      Thank you! I thought it was so much fun!!

  • Reply
    John Campbell
    April 11, 2017 at 9:49 am

    The spring is in full force over here. Gardening is one of the plans for the family, we are planting tomatoes, lettuces and sweet potatoes. Your ideas are great.
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  • Reply
    August 6, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    This is a great idea! my daughter has recently turned 3 and I know she would love this, might suggest this to my parents as a Christmas/next birthday gift idea.

    • Reply
      Sweet Miles
      August 8, 2017 at 11:34 pm

      Thank you!

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