The girls and I went to the mall today to take advantage of Ben and Jerry’s free cone day. It was a nice break after a long morning of punching through their school work. While we were walking around the mall with our dripping cones, I introduced the concept of “window shopping” to them. Maddie laughed like I made that up, but I said, “No – this is a real term; when you just look from outside the stores and don’t really spend any money.” Oh, okay.
Well, while window shopping, I occasionally overheard whispers and points to various items. My two older girls fell victim to a “Buy this for Mother’s Day!” ad and suddenly the wheels in their brains began turning and I could read their thoughts. And their thoughts made me a bit nervous because all the things they were pointing to were neither things I needed, nor things I wanted them to spend their precious cash on, thinking it would be the perfect thing. I didn’t say anything, though. And they didn’t ask for any of their cash (they know better by now – I keep it in the bank and usually make them wait a good week or more before giving any to them to make sure it is something they truly want).
Anyway, tonight Craig sent me to Borders to choose an album for him to write about for our Music and Theology class. I could do this because he needed an album of music he would not normally ever in a million zillion years choose for himself. He sent me alone and with a loaded Borders card. What was he thinking?
I found a book I really really really wanted (oh yes, I found the album for Craig, too). And I remembered our time in the mall earlier today. Putting two and two together, I bought the book. When I came home, I showed the book to Maddie and said, “Hey – I found this tonight and I really like it. If you want to give it to me for Mother’s Day, I won’t look at it again and you can wrap it up and stuff.”
She snatched the book and carried it around the house for several minutes. I casually said, “You know, you don’t have to give it to me for Mother’s Day. I don’t care.” She just as casually replied, “I’m thinking about it.”
She has since gone to bed and the book has disappeared. Score one for both of us here.
Now before anyone tells me I’m terrible for not allowing my kids to choose their own gifts, I just have to say this – I usually do. And I have a pretty hefty collection of random things from their sweet little hearts, well-saved allowances, and secret crafting sprees. I love every single one of them. And I have no doubt that there will be more to come in the future. But for this once, they are going to give me something I actually need. They are going to love giving it to me and I’m going to love getting it. I think we both win. *grin*