What We Gave Ella for her 10th Birthday

Ella turned 10 last week and the whole weekend was a fun celebration, including a birthday dinner with my brother, an outdoor movie with a couple of friends on Saturday night, and homemade cheesecake on Sunday evening.

We generally give our girls three gifts for their birthday, plus one or two from their siblings and then they get a gift from my parents and Bart’s parents, plus $5 from two of their great-grandmothers.

We try to focus more on the birthday celebrations than the presents, like our annual birthday date with the birthday girl and both parents, or breakfast in bed, or a special birthday dinner.

Of course, fewer gifts means you also don’t have room for filler gifts – every present needs to be something they’ll really enjoy or use.

Here’s are the gifts Ella got this year.

gifts for 10 year old girls

Ella LOVES games and she’d watched us play this pattern making game with some friends over Christmas break and was dying to try it herself. So adding it to our family collection was a no-brainer. She was THRILLED to open this one.

Like me, Ella is a hot sleeper, and she’d mentioned multiple times this summer that she wanted some lighter pajamas that were short sleeves and shorts. I bought her the size 8 (she’s tiny for her age) and they fit perfectly. She loves them and told me they were her new favorite pajamas. I bought her two pairs.

UPDATE: This was truly a piece of garbage. We ended up returning it. She said this was the best gift she got for her 10th birthday and I suspected this might be the case. She is ALWAYS sewing something by hand and always wants to use my sewing machine, so this was an easy gift win. Even better, my sister Landen gave her a month of sewing lessons for her birthday, and she’s SO excited about learning some new skills.

This was Ani’s gift to Ella and they were both elated over it. Oh, to be 7 and 10 again. The little girls stuffed it full of candy and it was a total hit.

My in-laws always give a book as a birthday gift. When I asked Ella what book she might be interested in, I wasn’t sure she’d have anything in mind because we own so many books, but she immediately said she wanted one of the Nanny Piggins books because they’re some of her all-time favorite books and we don’t own any of them.

This was my parents’ gift to Ella and she was over the moon about it. She’d asked for it specifically and I passed it along to my mom when she asked for recommendations.

Any other gift ideas that are perfect for a ten year old girl? I’m always up for more suggestions!


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  1. Wow, can’t believe she’s already 10!! That sewing machine sounds amazing! And I didn’t know they still made Easy Bake Ovens—there’s a blast from the past for ya! I bet my daughter would love one though (she’s only five, but baking and cooking with me is basically her favorite thing to do ever).

  2. My girls just turned 9 and 11, so right on either side of Ella. My 11 yo got an origami kit and what she most wanted, a hamster with all the stuff needed 😳. My 9 yo got an art set, a big stingray pool float, and a boom box style CD player to share with big sister. They both got boxy dolls from Grandma, and one gave the other the unicorns and fairies paint by sticker book that I had snagged for $3.99! (I try to keep a stash of inexpensive gifts that the kids can buy from me for each other or friends’ birthdays.)

  3. We gave my daughter a sewing maccing and sewing lessons for her 11th birthday!! Such a great skill for them to learn.

  4. I love Azul so much. Has she played Sagrada? It’s another puzzle-y placement game that I bet she would like. It sounds like she had a great day!

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