As the holidays approach, you may find yourself starting to think harder about what gifts to buy for your children. Your mind starts to wander to the presents your child HAD TO HAVE last year, played with for 2 days, and then discarded to the back of the toy chest to collect dust until your next deep clean finally found it being given away to charity, or worse, thrown away entirely.
What if you could give them a gift they wouldn’t outgrow this year, that wouldn’t collect dust, and would result in a lifetime of cherished memories? At West Maple Pediatric Dentistry, we had some ideas for some fun gifts you could give your child, nieces and nephews, or friends with children this year! Instead of another toy to be forgotten or game that sits on a shelf, what about giving the gift of an experience??
Instead of Clutter, Create a Memory!
We’ve put together a list of our favorite Omaha spots to play, roam, explore, create, and make a lasting memory with your family!
Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo
With newly expanded exhibits and a constantly growing habitat, the zoo is a gift families can enjoy year round, together! In the winter months, indoor exhibits like the desert dome, aquarium, and Madagascar exhibits experience lower traffic, meaning you and your family can enjoy the animals with a smaller crowd! The Lied Jungle is a warm escape from the frigid outdoors, and the animals engage more with the public when there is no crowd. In the spring and summer months, children enjoy the train and skyfari, creating the ultimate in staycation excitement! Membership options include additional memberships for caregivers, including nannies and grandparents!
4225 S. 120th St
By the time winter break hits, your children are already bouncing off the walls! With the unpredictable weather shifting from frigid to plain miserable, playing outside isn’t always an option. A membership at Go! Kids Gym gives your children a place to bounce off the walls, literally! A padded indoor trampoline, foam pit, balance beams, chalk wall, and countless toys and pieces of exercise equipment result in hours of fun for any little one aged 8 and under, and a bit of a break for those looking after them! Several membership options exist, as well as daily drop-in fees and punch cards. Sign up for one of the structured classes, or simply show up during open play!
It’s Yours Pottery
132nd and Center
For the budding artist in your life, offer a gift certificate to It’s Yours Pottery. Create a unique piece and a special memory with the little one you love. Creative options include modeling your creation out of clay, painting pottery or wooden signs, creating a canvas masterpiece, candle making, and more! Gift certificates are available in denominations from $10 to $100, and if you order them early enough, the establishment will even ship them to you! Take a look through the gallery and explore some of your options, pick a favorite little friend, and plan a kid date! The time together, away from life’s many demands, will surely be the most memorably gift you share with them this holiday!
Omaha Children’s Museum
500 s 20th st
With ever-changing displays, hands-on exhibits, educational games and activities, and fun interactive workshops, a membership to The Children’s Museum is the gift that gives year-round! Let your children explore the pipes and vacuums in the ball room, make a masterful mess on the Pella Painting Window, or enjoy the science show performed several times a day! Encourage their curiosity and feed their inner scientist!
1111 Bellevue Blvd. North
With year-round hiking trails, animal encounters, educational classes and workshops, and a MudPies program for little learners, Fontenelle is your nature-lover’s paradise! Annual memberships mean your family can enjoy the preserve during all open hours, and your money is supporting local wildlife! Encourage their wild side with a year of exploring nature with the friendly, knowledgeable guides!
We hope this list offers you some inspiration when you’re holiday shopping for your favorite little one this season! It can be so frustrating to find those thoughtful and sometimes very expensive gifts being wasted. Unfortunately, this happens more often in your life than you may realize.
For example, did you purchase dental insurance for your child this year? That bright smile and healthy mouth are a gift you’ve invested in greatly! But did you use those benefits, or will they expire when the calendar ticks down at the end of the year? It’s a gift you buy for your family every year, but not many people realize that when it comes to dental benefits, if you don’t use it, you lose it!
This might be a good time to pull out this year’s policy and dust it off for a refresher course! A few terms you may notice include:
- Term: This refers to how long this coverage lasts. Terms are usually 12 months, except in situations where the insurance is provided by a temporary employer, in which case the term will likely be shorter. The term ends if the policy holder leaves their current employer, and those benefits expire immediately upon termination of the position.
- Co-Pay: This is the amount due for services at each visit. Depending on your coverage, this could be anywhere from $0 to $50.
- Exclusions: These are services that are not covered by insurance. This usually includes cosmetic procedures, or anything deemed not medically necessary.
- Yearly Max: Many insurance companies put a spending cap on procedures, and your yearly max is the maximum amount your insurance will cover in a calendar year.
- Deductible: This is a cap on your own personal spending. This means that if you’ve paid for services and reached the amount of your deductible, insurance begins covering your services.
Most insurance covers two cleanings per year, X-rays, exam, descaling, checks for abnormalities and oral
cancers, as well as other necessary procedures after you’ve met the deductible. If you have any questions about your insurance, what services we offer, and what is covered, please give us a call! We’d be more than happy to help you navigate the sometimes frustrating or confusing tangle of dental benefits!
And while it may seem easy to “brush off” dental care as a luxury, remember that your oral health affects your overall health as well! Your teeth can tell you things about your heart, your circulation, your diet, and countless other systems! You’ve already paid for your child’s dental insurance for the year. Now give them the gift of understanding the importance of oral health!
More than anything, though, we want to take a moment this season of thankfulness to tell you how grateful we are that you have trusted us with your family’s smiles! We are thankful for every one of you!