We’re running a little late this year, but there’s still time to get that perfect gift for your Laura fan under the tree before Christmas. Whether you are looking for the perfect present for the Laura Ingalls Wilder fan in your life or just what you want to know what to put on your Christmas want list, check out these suggestions.
This is the fifth year I’ve put together a shopping guide. Check the first post for basic gift ideas. So read that first and instead in this post look for new items, other ideas and then a list of which Laura homesites are offering Christmas mail order and the cut off dates for shipping by Christmas this year. Trundlebed Tales encourages you to do at least a little Christmas shopping from the Laura homesites because they are all local museums, highly dependent on admissions and gift shop revenue to stay open and preserve the homesites for Laura fans, so do your part.
I do have to apologize because prepping for a big trip I didn’t take as much time as I like reaching out to all the sites and making sure I have their last ship dates. If I didn’t get a shipping date, call them and ask. 🙂
And don’t forget you can also get your Laura fan gift memberships to the museums or a donation in your Laura fan’s name!
After a banner year last year where they sold out within 2 months, the multi-site Laura Ingalls Wilder calendars returned again this year. They were determined not to run out again and they definitely made their goal. Spring Valley is having a closing out sale of theirs for $5 a piece which is the cheapest I’ve found, but most homesites have them available. It makes a great stocking stuffer. I bought 3.
Spring Valley may be a small site, but they tend to look for different and local buys so giftshop always has interesting things you won’t find other place. This is the spot where I got my favorite Almanzo doll that you may have seen in my other posts. Has your Laura fan started your collection of site specific glass ball ornaments? It’s a set, but you can only get that site’s ball at that individual site. You need Spring Valley’s to complete your Laura fan’s collection.
The Mary Ingalls Society at the Iowa School for the Blind and Sight Saving School has joined the ranks of mail order this year. They are selling a lovely glass ball ornament and calendars. These calendars are not the multisite ones available elsewhere, these are twelve months of lovely photos of the ISBSSS.
With one of the largest gift shops, Walnut Grove continues to work with authors and publishers to offer signed copies for Little House fans who can’t get to a book signing. Their big seller right now is autographed copies of Melissa Gilbert’s My Prairie Cookbook: Memories and Frontier Food from My Little House to Yours. Ask them about other titles. They also focus on local handcrafted items. Don’t forget their doll clothes including the cutest American Girl style doll coat on the planet.
Another large giftshop is at the Memorial Society in De Smet. Find two new books there this year De Smet Images of America is a collection of old photos of De Smet drawn from collections around the community. Many images are available only in this title. Check out an exciting, well researched publication Laura Ingalls Wilder and Education in Kingsbury County by Nancy Cleveland.
Most exciting is the exclusive set of porcelain ornaments De Smet has been released one a year. This year the ornament is based on Little Town on the Prairie. Previous releases of By the Shores of Silver Lake and The Long Winter are still available. Read more about them.
Independence is taking a bit of different tack this year and is keeping their gift shop open through a sister shop which is staffed all winter. The Red Buffalo is 11 – 5 open Monday thru Saturday for month of December,
Phone: 620.725.4022 • E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out their Little House on the Prairie Museum label jams and fruit butters for a homemade touch. They also have a lovely site specific ornament.
Check out new fabric licensed by Little House on the Prairie of Family Friendly Films for crafts and sewing projects.
Walnut Grove MN
Last Day for Priority Mail – December 18, 2015
They’ve had trouble updating their website lately. If you don’t see something on their website, call and check.
De Smet SD
Laura Ingalls Wilder Memorial Society, Click on The Gift Shop
Last Day for Priority Mail – December 15, 2015
Phone: 605-854-3773 (Ignore the toll free number on the site, it’s no long valid)
Phone 1-877-924-7126 (Toll free)
Malone said for their set up, online ordering has a quicker response during the off season. If you’d rather order by phone or have a question e-mail them and they’ll either e-mail a response or call you, so please include your phone number. They didn’t respond with a date this year, so it’s up to you.
Spring Valley MN
Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum (Store not online, but they are one of the glass ball ornament sites)
Recommends using e-mail to order for Christmas, but you may want to include your phone number in the e-mail so they can get back to you with questions quickly.
Last Day for Priority – December 10, 2015
Burr Oak IA
Phone (563) 735-5916
The best way for people to shop during the winter is through the website gift shop and then pay through Paypal. They can email the museum with questions. They are no longer accepting checks for orders because of some bad check incidents.
Off season ordering is only online, through e-mail. Contact them through their contact form.
Last Day for Priority – Not giving a last day, it’s up to the customer.
Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.