Christmas Gift Guide 2018

Diary of the Dad Christmas Gift Guide 2018.

Even if you’re someone like me who doesn’t like too many mentions of Christmas cropping up in November, it’s time to at least start thinking about gifts.

Because the last few weeks before the big day have a habit of flying by, don’t they? With that in mind, here are some gift ideas I liked the look of. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you my Christmas Gift Guide 2018!

Scalextric Endurance Set & Extension Packs

Scalextric is conclusive proof that exciting games are not limited to screens. I think it’s fair to say that the iconic racing game has reached ‘timeless classic’ status and this set is ideal for a new generation of front room racers.

The Scalextric Endurance Set boasts super-resistant cars and new speed limiter controllers. With a classic circuit design, it’s a great introduction for newcomers. It’s compatible with both Track Extension Pack 1 and Ultimate Track Extension Pack so there’s plenty of scope for some pretty epic festive races!

RRP: £64.99 (Endurance Set), £29.99 (Extension Pack 1), £55.99 (Ultimate Pack)

Swannies Blue Light Blocking Glasses

I’m a big fan of practical gifts and these Swannies Blue Light Blocking Glasses by Swanwick are just the job. Screen time continues to be a big issue for families – particularly as bedtime approaches. One of the reasons we struggle to sleep after looking at screens is the blue light that all devices produce.

It stops our bodies from producing melatonin which, in turn, stops us from getting to sleep. These shades block it. Simply wear them during screen time and before bed and enjoy better sleep as a result.

RRP: from $59

What Do You Meme?

Having games to play at Christmas is a must and here’s a brilliant one for the day and age we live in! Who doesn’t like a good meme, eh? Available from MenKind, the object of What Do You Meme? is to find the funniest caption for assorted memes that have gone viral.

Pick one of the 75 photo cards, place it on the easel then choose from the 360 caption cards (including a sealed set of NSFW captions) to find the best one. The winner of each round keeps the picture card and the player with the most at the end of the game wins. Simple, but a lot of fun!

RRP: £29.99

The Folio Book of Children’s Poetry

I love Folio Society editions. They’re brilliantly crafted with a clear affection for both the original works and the written word as a creative form. My kids all love books, but one area that was lacking a little in our collection was poetry.

This title includes 88 carefully selected poems including works by an eclectic mix including William Shakespeare, Emily Dickinson and Spike Milligan. It’s beautifully illustrated and comes in a glow-in-the-dark case which kids will love too. A wonderful introduction to an important literary medium.

The Folio Book of Children’s Poetry is available exclusively from

RRP: £44.95

Hamleys gift ideas

You would expect Hamleys to have an extensive range of gift ideas and the famous toy store doesn’t disappoint! As well as thousands of other top ranges, it boasts one of the biggest assortments of Harry Potter goodies in the UK.

Pictured here are a Harry Potter Light Painting Wand and a Pomsies Series 1 wearable Pom-Pom Pet. I know that both will be big hits in our house on Christmas Day!

RRP: various

Parent Bear T-shirts

I love a slogan T-shirt and I think this one from Parent Bear says it all! I spend a fair bit of time being the man in the middle, diffusing sibling arguments and brandishing the odd figurative yellow card!

It’s made of nice, comfortable cotton and available in ten different colours. I went for maroon – both because I like the colour and because I sometimes feel marooned when all three kids kick off at the same time!

RRP: £29.99

Atlas Obscura

If your kids have shown an interest in geography, they’re sure to love this. The Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid introduces future globetrotters to 100 of the most intriguing destinations on the planet.

From abandoned amusement parks to forgotten subterranean worlds it’s got the lot. The tone throughout is spot on and the excellent illustrations reflect the sense of the fantastic.

RRP: £10.99

12-in-1 Solar & Hydraulic Construction Kit

This STEM-friendly kit available at MenKind is suitable for children aged eight and up is a brilliant introduction to robotics. It enables kids to create no fewer than a dozen self-powered robots including a forklift, a scorpion and a T-Rex.

As well as being a lot of fun to build and watch in action, these solar- and hydraulic-powered bots are massively educational. Plus, of course, they don’t require batteries. A fantastic gift for a wannabe inventor.

RRP: £24.99

Key Bricks

Always losing your keys? Love construction toys? Then these colourful stocking fillers from Thumbs Up UK  will be right up your street! Key Bricks put the fun into functional. They make keys easy to spot and you could colour code different bricks for different keys.

They also come with a 50cm-long adhesive strip that can be stuck to most smooth surfaces. When you’re not using your keys, simply click them into place for safe keeping.

RRP: £8.70

Guinness World Records 2019

Christmas wouldn’t be complete without the latest edition of this iconic title! Guinness World Records 2019 includes the usual quota of amazing feats achieved by amazing people. Among my favourite records are the world’s largest water pistol and fastest 50m on hand skates.

There are several noteworthy chapters including ‘Universe’, ‘Social media’ and ‘Do try this at home’. It’s absolutely packed with records that should serve to entertain and inspire readers young and old.

RRP: £20, but currently £7.50 on Amazon.

Hape Mini Band Set

We’ve had a fair few Hape toys and have been consistently impressed with their quality and longevity. So I know that the Hape Mini Band Set will be a welcome addition to our toy box.

Comprising a ukelele, tambourine, rainmaker, clapper and rattle it introduces young children to the joys of making music while standing up to their sometimes heavy-handed nature! I can see youngest forming a one-preschooler band with this set!

RRP: £38.67

So that’s that for my Christmas Gift Guide 2018. I hope you’ve found these suggestions useful – happy shopping!

Disclosure: the featured gift ideas have been provided for me to include and keep. This post also includes affiliate links. 

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