Wednesday, December 26, 2007

A Rare Christmas Gift

I am sure all of you can relate but I was pretty stressed out about Christmas this year. The money situation really put a damper on my plans this year and I was really upset. I had all these great ideas about things I could do to surprise my wife and kids with the coolest gifts ever but those plans were quickly thrown out.

My wife and I both agreed to not exchange gifts this year so we could make sure the kids had a great Christmas morning. My daughter has spent the second half of the year talking about an American Girl doll and how awesome it would be to have one. She was not annoying about it but it was funny how I would constantly find AG catalogs all over the house. We knew we wanted to get that for her.

We were going to get George gift cards to clothing stores. He is 13 now and we felt it would be better for him to pick out his own clothes now but with us still retaining our “Veto” power if something was not appropriate. I decided to ask him what he wanted just to see if we were on the right track. The very first thing he mentioned was his bedroom. You see, when he was 8 we painted his room with a “Space” theme. Glow in the dark planets on the ceiling and cartoonish looking planets painted in various spots in the room. A total kids room and now that he is a teen he wants to change it up.

I felt so bad that we never thought about doing this sooner but I was proud if him to ask for such a great gift. I had planned to get a bunch of stuff for him and for Gillian but money was not going to allow any of it. I felt terrible. I actually pulled George aside and told him that Christmas was going to suck this year and that I was sorry about that. He told me not to worry that it was not a big deal and left it at that.

Come Christmas morning as we watched our kids open their gifts, they surprised me with a couple of things. First Gillian got me a little tool set I could keep in my car that said “Dad” on it and George found this stuffed bunny and gave it to me as a joke. I will have to explain that one later but it was quite funny.

The kids had saved up some cash and got their mom “Hairspray” which we watched last night. And Gillian made her a coupon holder for her purse that was very cute.

Gillian loved her American Girl doll and although we could not do much more then that she was overjoyed. In fact, I do not believe that doll has left her side since.

George was so excited to have the ability to choose what his room is going to look like. He was so thankful and excited about it. It was great to see those smiles.

After all the wrapping paper had settled we were just about to start getting ready to go to Christmas Breakfast with my sisters when George said, “You see Dad. I don’t know why you think Christmas is going to suck. That was awesome! I would have been happy with one thing and still you guys make is the best ever. I know we have financial problems but you guys always make it great!”

And that was the best present we received for Christmas. Grateful children are a precious and rare gift.


Colleen said...

Again I will comment that you and your wife have obviously raised two terrific young people!
And - read your post at d-life. One day of "off the diet" is not the end. You're doing great so - do NOT give up.

Donna said...

You have some great kids. You should be proud of them & I know you are.

BTW, my daughter loved her American girl doll (Kirsten). She still has it & she's 23! I'm sure your daughter will treasure hers also.

Scott K. Johnson said...

That is really great G-Money. Great kids come from great parents.

Cara said...

How great! I love to see kids that appreciate what they have! Children like that grow up to be great adults! Good job.

Anonymous said...

Your kids do sound great!

Don't tell anyone but I still have my American Girl dolls - Samantha and Kirsten. I mean, I don't play with them anymore (obviously), but I refuse to give them away. :D

Christine-Megan said...

Glad your Christmas was so good! It sounds like you are raising great kids and should be proud.

landileigh said...

my daughter had the Samantha doll and she always treated it as if she would break any moment. my daughter is 17 now and that doll is in a place of honor in her room.

i agree about the not worrying about the one day off of your diet. just pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.

btw, at 13, having a room MY WAY, would have been a FABU gift! maybe you'll get lucky and he'll want a ninja theme!

Albert said...

It's great to hear that some kids these days can be truly grateful and not feel entitled! Above all the presents, is the blessing to be able to spend it with family.

Glad you guys had a great Christmas.

Chris said...

It is great that your kids understand and are still grateful for whatever they get. You definitely have some special kids.

AmyT said...

Sweet! I love the bunny!

Happy New Year to you and yours, George.