Looking for a special holiday gift for a kid with type 1 diabetes? We’ve gathered our list of favorites from funny to practical and everything in between. This year we include ideas from I Heart Guts, The Sugars, American Girl, Pump Peelz, Lauren’s Hope Medical ID Bracelets, Sugar Medical Supply, Myabetic, ExpressionMed, and Jerry the Bear.
While I think the holidays should be all about the holidays and not about diabetes, there are a few diabetes-related items that might be fun gifts.
My thought is that any diabetes-related gift shouldn’t replace a gift that they would otherwise get. For instance, if your non-d-kid gets 5 toys and your d-kid gets 4 toys and a diabetes gift, well that’s kind of a punishment for having a busted pancreas. But since some of these are high ticket items, the holidays might be a good time to give them.
(Note: a few of the links are affiliate links. Most are not.)
(Another note: when I shop online, I make sure to take advantage of Rakuten, formerly called eBates. They have a web browser tool that will pop up whenever you are shopping at a store that gives cash back. If you haven’t signed up for eBates, I highly recommend it. If you use my friend link to sign up, we’ll both get an extra reward.)
I Heart Guts
Our kids might not have fully functioning pancreii (pancreases?), but they might love this huggable organ. I Heart Guts makes several pancreas-themed items including magnets and lapel pins and this little guy.
If they don’t want to hug it, maybe they would like to throw it across the room when diabetes isn’t cooperating. Just a thought.
Visit the I Heart Guts website and use code GIFTS4T1DKIDS for 20% off anything pancreas-related through Christmas Day. You can also purchase the plush pancreas and their other pancreas goodies from Amazon.
Here are four picture books, two of which you can get in Spanish, a graphic novel, and a YA fiction book.
Just Ask!: Be Different, Be Brave, Be You
I can’t tell you how much I love this book. And I will admit that I got a little teary-eyed reading it.
Just Ask! is a new picture book written by Supreme Court Justice Sonya Sotomayor, who has lived with type 1 diabetes since she was a child.
Read more about the book: Just Ask T1D Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
I am Sonia Sotomayor
We haven’t read this book yet, but we are big fans of Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor who has lived with type 1 diabetes since she was a child. If you are interested in Sotomayor, here is a book about her life.
Purchase I am Sonia Sotomayor by Brad Meltzer.
Open Up Your Bag
Open Up Your Bag is a new picture book written by Mike Lawson for young children living with type 1 diabetes or who have a family member or friend with diabetes. Zip, zip, zip…
Read more about the book and Q’s interview with the author: Open Up Your Bag: A New Picture Book for Children with Type 1 Diabetes
I Am Not Afraid: Surviving Type 1 Diabetes
We haven’t read this title yet, either, but we are excited to see a child of color featured in a book about type 1 diabetes!
Purchase I Am Not Afraid by Shelly Johnson.
The Truth About Stacey
If you are, cough, my age, you might have read The Baby-Sitters Club books. They have been reimagined as graphic novels by Raina Telgemeier for this generation. The Truth About Stacey reveals her secret: that she has type 1 diabetes. While they did not update the way she manages her diabetes (I don’t know many kids who use exchanges to count carbs these days), it’s great that this generation of kiddos is learning about diabetes through Stacey’s eyes.
Purchase The Baby-Sitters Club: The Truth About Stacey by Ann M. Margaret with illustrations by Raina Telgemeier.
Let Me List The Ways
I’m always excited to see a main character in a book who lives with type 1 diabetes. “Let Me List the Ways,” a new young adult (YA) novel written by Sarah White, features a teenage girl with T1D.
Purchase Let Me List the Ways by Sarah White.
Read more about the book: Let Me List the Ways.
Like many other girls (and boys), Q loved playing with American Girl dolls and found it fun to accessorize them to give them their own personalities. In the last few years, American Girl has really upped their inclusivity game by adding dolls and accessories for various medical conditions.
We love the American Girl Diabetes Care Kit. It has so many little details, and it’s so awesome that they can now wear a medical alert bracelet, check their blood sugar, and even wear an insulin pump.
See the Diabetes Care Kit on the American Girl website.
We just ordered a set of Pump Peelz for Q’s Dexcom transmitter, Dexcom receiver, and Omnipod PDM. She can’t wait to receive them and personalize her diabetes devices. She found so many styles that she liked; her favorites were comic explosion, pop art, and fireworks.
Pump Peelz makes eco-friendly, removable stickers to customize a variety of diabetes devices.
Visit the Pump Peelz website and use code “D-Mom” for 25% off your purchase.
Since Q was diagnosed, we’ve always ordered Lauren’s Hope Medical ID Jewelry to make sure that in case of an emergency, responders would know that she has type 1 diabetes. We love Lauren’s Hope because they have so many great styles to choose from and they don’t look “medical.”
Visit the Lauren’s Hope website. Readers can use the code “DMOM18” for 10% off their order through 12/31/18.
Sugar Medical Supply
Q carries her insulin pump PDM/meter, extra test strips, lancets, and insulin in a Sugar Medical Supply pouch. She likes color and pattern over the boring black pouches that come with most meters
All the cool kids are wearing sling backpacks these days. (I’m not sure if that’s actually true, LOL, but lots of kids wear sling backpacks.) Q used one of the new sling backpacks from Sugar Medical Supply last school year as her pump supply bag.
I’m a big fan of crossbody bags. Q has the Sadie Insulated Crossbody and I, uh, kind of stole it from her!
When she’s not using it, I grab it. I love the many, many (many!) pockets.
Readers can use the code “DMOM15” for 15% on the Sugar Medical Supply website.
Q loves, loves, loves her Brandy Diabetes Backpack from Myabetic. It’s big enough to schlep all her diabetes supplies, snacks, and the other things she needs for the day.
They have a new product called the Jay Diabetes Sling that would be great for tweens and teens.
Myabetic also makes supply cases for kids with type 1 diabetes such as the Love Bug, Sports Locker, Dog, Dinosaur, Monkey, Cat and Unicorn(!).
Readers can use code “DMOM” for a 15% discount on the Myabetic website.
Jerry the Bear
Q and I met Hannah and the gang at Friends For Life a few summers ago. We’ve been big cheerleaders as Jerry has evolved since its conception.
Jerry the Bear with diabetes is wonderful for younger, recently diagnosed kiddos. Personally, I feel that role play is a great way for kids to express themselves.
And Q’s brother actually played with it even more than she did! It’s great for siblings to help them understand what their brother or sister needs to do to manage their diabetes.
We are so glad to see the price of Jerry the Bear come down since it was first launched because it’s accessible to more and more kids with diabetes. It’s currently priced at $55.
See Jerry in action on the Jerry the Bear website.
We’ve long used Opsite Flexifix (read my tutorial) to keep Q’s CGM in place (and to extend the wear). But lately, we’ve been opting for ExpressionMed adhesive patches, which are a bit more stylish and fun.
I’ve been really impressed with them because it kept Q’s CGM sensor on her through a camping trip that included swimming, sweating, and getting dirty.
Blog Posts We’ve Written About Some Of These Products
Pump Peelz: Use code “D-Mom” for 25% off on the Pump Peelz website.
Lauren’s Hope: Use code “DMOM” for 10% off on the Lauren’s Hope website through 12/31/18.
I Heart Guts: Use code “GIFTS4T1DKIDS” for 20% off anything pancreas-related through December 25, 2018.
Myabetic: Use code “DMOM” for a 15% discount on the Myabetic website.
All images are courtesy the company they represent.
Disclosure: I have an affiliate relationship with some of these companies and have received free products for review consideration from a few of these companies. If it’s a product we use, I include it because we really do like it. But please don’t consider product mentions as endorsements. I’m not receiving any financial compensation directly from the companies for their inclusion here. Please read my disclosure statement.