Between juggling work with life as a mom of two very active boys under six, the thought of holiday shopping and finding gifts makes me want to...
I decided to flip the script and delegate my eldest the responsibility of making a list. I gave him a catalog from a shop he’s familiar with, a pen, and a pad of little yellow post-its. I asked him to go through and curate some gift ideas for himself, his brother, and their cousins.
Honestly, I initially gave it to him as a way to keep him busy while I got some work done, and it definitely kept him busy. Dedicated to the task, he sat quietly, carefully reviewing each item and deciding whether it was worthy of a note, or not. He really impressed me.
I was so happy, feeling like I was getting ahead of the holiday. Realizing prices were not listed in the catalog, I jumped online to check the items out. I found that each item he chose was more expensive than the next.
I mean, for himself he marked a LEGO set that costs over $200. Sure he loves LEGO (who doesn’t?!), but within a week of its assembly, it will be in pieces on the floor and eventually end up in a bucket.
What do I do? He was so excited and proud to have picked these great gifts. Not his fault he has expensive taste, and in all fairness, I never mentioned anything about a budget.
So I rolled up my sleeves and searched for the items across different stores.
I find some of the more reasonably priced items and order them. I call him over. I start by thanking him for all the effort and tell him that some of the items are on the way and we can wrap those up together.
Then I explain that although he has excellent taste in toys, some of the items were just too far out of my budget for the gifts and that we need to think of some other ways to get them. Like, he could request to get money sent to his GoHenry card from family and friends, then he can put that money towards buying that LEGO set or anything else he may decide to get with his gift money.
I studied his face for a reaction. He looked at me and said, “Let’s do the money, and then I can buy that set, or maybe I’ll choose something else, we’ll see.”
As a parent, watching your kids make decisions is an amazing experience. What feels like a minute ago, they were babies in your arms and now they have opinions and perspectives.
While learning, growing, and being faced with new obstacles or challenges sometimes they make good choices, sometimes they make not-so-good choices, and sometimes they just throw a tantrum. Depending on the situation, how tired and hungry they are at that moment, it could really go any which way.
When you watch them make those good choices feels like...