Tuesday, December 4, 2007

all I want for Christmas . . . is everything

In today’s Globe & Mail , there was an article about the extent that parents in Toronto are going to to get their children tickets to a “Hannah Montana” concert. Apparently, these tickets can cost up to $1200, and the article was featuring a father who was considering taking a second job so he could get these tickets for his daughters, and another mother who was offering 2 days of her husband’s plumbing services in exchange for tickets so she could take her 7-year-old daughter.

For once, I have to say that I whole-heartedly agree with the posters in the Globe’s online discussion, who all suggested that these parents were insane to be even considering spending that kind of money to take their children to a concert, and that their children would get over the disappointment eventually.

There was another article a few weeks ago in which a “mother of two grown children” was asking for advice – her daughter had requested no presents for her family, her son was upset about this, and the commentators were weighing in on how even if the parents didn’t want gifts, the children shouldn’t be deprived.

Somewhere between nothing and $1200 concert tickets, there has to be a happy medium. We want to get gifts for our nephew, because he’s excited about presents under the tree (last year, when he was almost 4, if you asked him what he wanted for Christmas, he just said “presents” – not games or toys or books . . . it was the excitement of something mysterious and just for him that mattered). He’s (for one more Christmas only) an only child, grandchild, and nephew – meaning there’s a lot of people to provide those presents.

I feel like I am slipping on the responsible gift-giving front this year. I don’t have a lot of ideas for crafts (or time, for the few ideas I have, or for shopping further afield). We haven’t even got to the little guy yet, and I know I’ll have the same quandary I always have – it doesn’t make sense to give a gift that someone doesn’t want – but there is a large gap between want and need, and the Hannah Montana tickets reveal that it may not be good to give someone everything they want either . . .

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