Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dear St. Nick,

Why in the world would I be worrying about Christmas time in the middle of August?  I’ve discovered that my grandmother (and now my sister) was right about shopping early.  I love to hit December with my shopping list whittled down to a few stocking stuffers and only needing to worry about baking cookies (which was quite an undertaking last year).  So this weekend I casually mention to my daughter that I wondered what she might be asking St. Nick for this year.  She and my son know they get one big deal present from Santa and that’s it.  So she immediately answers that she wants “an ice cream bear.  The one that is pink and blue, with an ice cream cone”.  She reminded me that we had seen an advertisement for Build-A-Bear Ice Cream Bears.  No problem I think to myself and go off to search the internet for a bear she can thank St. Nick for.
Um….they were a limited time offer.  And, ahem…uh, they are really expensive on EBay.  I attempted to bid on one I found for a reasonable price but was quickly outbid.  So now I’m in the middle of a dilemma.  I cannot, in good conscience, pay $30 plus dollars for a stuffed animal that will sooner or later end up at the bottom of the toy box or stuffed under the bed.  But I hate to disappoint my daughter by not getting her a surprise she would enjoy.  She is one of those kids that believes her stuffed friends are real and that they have actual feelings and I’m getting a little misty sitting her typing but she genuinely loves her friends.  I wonder if between now and then I could dye a bear to look like this one and find a felt ice cream cone.  What a crafty undertaking that would be.  The easier thing (ooh I love the path of least resistance) would be to convince her she would really like something else…as in, something I can actually afford.

Even if this wasn’t a request for St. Nick (I know some parents are opposed to the idea of lying to their kids), it would still be a request for a present that she really wants.  I feel like I walk a tiny little line between keeping my kids' spirit bright and untarnished and showing them how the world REALLY works.  If you were me, what would you do?

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Like George Washington Carver said:

1. Be clean both inside and outside.
2. Neither look up to the rich nor down on the poor.
3. Lose, if need be, without squealing.
4. Win without bragging.
5. Always be considerate of women, children and old people.
6. Be too brave to lie.
7. Be too generous to cheat.
8. Take your share of the world and let others take theirs.


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