Confession time: I love Christmas and gift-giving and traditions, but I hate putting together items for my kids’ stockings. I always seem to fill it with candy they don’t need or plastic junk we end up throwing away or underwear they don’t care about (womp womp.) It all just seems so wasteful.

So, when my friend told me always gives her children a few small travel games for stocking stuffers, I thought it was brilliant.

She shared that the games are a favorite tradition for her family. She mixes it up between fun and educational, and while she’s making dinner or cleaning up or they are stuck in the car on the way to Grandma’s house, these games are a lifesaver.

We started asking around to other moms, and here are the top games for this year:

Math Dice: Math Dice Jr. is the perfect dice game to introduce or reinforce early math skills in children. Roll the 12-sided Target Die to get your target number, then roll the five 6-sided Scoring Dice. Add, subtract, or add and subtract—use whatever equation you need to hit your target number. For every Scoring Die used, move one space on the Scoring Track. First to the finish line wins! Math Dice Jr. makes math fun!

ThinkFun Math Dice Junior Game for Boys and Girls Age 6 and Up - Teachers Favorite and Toy of the Year Nominee


The Try Not to Laugh Challenge – Would You Rather: This is the perfect game for family road trips or to end a family game night. 

Smack It: Combining the classic games of Slap Jack and War, this high-intensity game is fast and easy to play.

Smack it Card Game for Kids

Guess Who: The original guessing game with a twist.

Kanoodle: This game is so much fun and makes adult brains hurt! Kanoodle is a puzzle game that includes 12 puzzle pieces, 200 puzzle challenges, a 48-page illustrated puzzle book, and a carrying case. Perfect brain teaser travel game!

Educational Insights Kanoodle | Brain Twisting 3-D Puzzle Game for Kids & Adults | Featuring 200 Brain Games

Mini JengaThis is a great game for noisy restaurants or occupying hands when you have to wait somewhere. It’s the same classic game but in a miniature version.

Hasbro Gaming Jenga Mini Game


Uno Dare: Everyone loves this game . . . even teenagers! It’s a classic twist on our favorite card game.  Uno’s added the dare card, where you can draw two or take a dare like playing the next round while hopping on one foot or talking like a pirate.

Mattel Games UNO Dare Card Game


Cat’s Cradle String Book: OK, not so much a game, but our kids loved learning how to make everything from a witch’s broom to Jacob’s ladder, just like we did in our youth.

Streaking Kittens: If your family was one of the 8 million who purchased Exploding Kittens, you are going to love its updated version. One reviewer said: “It’s like UNO, except there are goats, magical enchiladas and kittens that can kill you.” Fun for the whole family!


Streaking Kittens: This Is The Second Expansion of Exploding Kittens

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