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Get the kids to make something. A hand painted toilet roll with some chocolates wrapped in it will be more appreciated by some grandparents than anything you can buy. This is when it is true that it is the thought that counts. They don’t appreciate $ and they don’t “need” anything, so...let it be something personal instead. No-one will reject something a child makes.
Donate to a charity on their behalf. I received a gift card for one where I could pick what to donate (sorry can't remember the name as it was a while ago). I liked that I could be a part of the donation :)
Lol I hate asking people for presents (and if someone asks what I want and I tell them, it still feels like asking for presents) so I’m very likely to say I don’t need anything. Also, if I want something I just buy it for myself so I don’t actually have a list of things to ask other people for. Didn’t realise that was being negative 😂 I get told off if I say gift cards because apparently that’s impersonal (even though it’s what I actually want) and I hate it when people give me random crap so I’d much rather say no presents please. At least food and alcohol gifts can be used up and won’t sit in a cupboard waiting to be regifted.
When it's approaching, I'd say 'hey, your birthday is coming up, what would you like as a gift?' If they say nothing, than get them just that. A handmade card from the kiddies is all I'd do. Otherwise I'd just organise to take them out for breakfast/ go to the movies/zoo or something and pay for them.