It is a big deal when a nine-year-old girl hits her first double-digit birthday. Suddenly she is included in the world of preteen culture. Celebrate her transition to the tween-age years by showing her you understand the things she is interested in. Cut through the advertising clutter and opt for a gift she will cherish.
Let's face it, electronics top the list for kids. Find out the name of the little lady's game system of choice and choose a game to add to her collection. If she is a fan of hand-held games, a carrying case in her favourite colour and a set of jelly-bean coloured ear-buds will make her smile.
If the budget is limitless, present the birthday girl with the musical instrument she has been buzzing about. Playing an instrument provides a girl with a talent and hobby that she can enjoy all of her life. Take her along to pick it out and arrange for lessons to get her started.
Pick a pocketbook from the vast selection of shapes and sizes that are designed for preteen girls. Choose one in the shape of her favourite pop-culture cartoon, or stick with a classic style in a girl-friendly colour. Fill it with a matching wallet and change purse. Add a comb, brush and mirror. Tuck in pale pink lip gloss. Don't forget a bit of spending money.
Visit a bookstore to choose from a variety of preteen-appropriate books. Buy a single copy or gift her with a complete boxed series. Read through a few pages of books in the "Dear Dumb Diary," "Sweet Valley High" or "Beacon Street Girls" series to determine one that will appeal to your birthday girl. If you are not sure, give her a bookstore gift card.
Encourage the birthday girl's interest in creating things. Buy a kit for jewellery-making, doll-dress designing or greeting-card production. Craft kits are available at toy and hobby stores. Include an extra package of supplies with your gift.
Preteens appreciate room decorations, accessories and furniture to update their "little girl" bedroom. Don't expect her to abandon her current style all of a sudden—a total room makeover is too drastic. Look over her current space for clues about her colour and style preferences. Take a trip to a bed-and-bath store to select bigger-girl versions of throw pillows or bedspreads. Choose a framed mirror or favourite hobby-themed poster for her wall.
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