Pay close attention to what your children want for their birthday – that one thing they ask for over and over again – not just at the moment they see a commercial on TV, but at many other times over the days and weeks leading up to the birthday. That item can be the best present ever. And, it gives a very special message: “I’m listening to you. What you say you need is important.”
If the request is not possible for your family, it’s best to tell your children that as soon as the request is made. Don’t let them build up hopes that can’t come true.
Remember that the most simple gifts (pens and pencils, a certain hat, a stuffed animal) can be enough just because your child wants it. If that one thing that is asked for is too complicated or expensive, you may be able to make it more simple and affordable.
For example, if a young child is saying they need a hideout, it doesn’t necessarily have to be an elaborate constructed item for the backyard. It could be something you make from cardboard for a corner in the family room or basement playroom. This is especially good for very young children. As long as they can play with it the way they want to, it doesn’t necessarily have to be made of the most fancy, expensive materials.
Inspired by CLEVER JACK TAKES THE CAKE by Candace Fleming