We generally get our kids gifts (and clothes, furniture, etc) from the op shop/ebay where we can and encourage friends and family to do the same if they want to get our kids prezzies. If they can make something then that's even better. Mum's starting to get into it and came up with the idea of making a little wooden rocking bassinet to put a doll in for my daughter which I thought was great!
I found this awesome set of metal Tonka trucks last year at an op shop that were a bit rusty and dented in spots but my little boy was stoked when he got them and still plays with them all the time.
I hear you man
i have a one year old boy andwe have been very strict with the no plastic/disney/merchandise and it has sort of worked. vinnies has received a few toys that were not opened. i also have a father in lawwho asks if we are missing tv every time i see him.
'nobody will sell you what you need - you gotta grow it from a seed'
Chris Smither (heard at Apollo Bay Music Festival)