Thursday, December 8, 2011

giving gifts and the three year old

The other day I received an email from Hadley's preschool teacher. It's not unusual to received them... We get a weekly newsletter, or a way to let us know to bring outside clothes, or to announce other happenings. I love technology!

Anyway, this letter was about a community giving project the school was participating in. Each year, they collect certain items to give to kids in the community in need. We were invited to bring in (new) underwear and socks to give to these kids.

With our potty training efforts, this was a great thing. After all, tis' the season on so many levels... I picked up a package of little girl undies and socks at my last trip to Target (which is often a daily excursion - it's our local grocery). And I excitedly started to tell Hadley about why we bought them. The conversation is not what I had hoped for...

ME: Hadley, you know at Christmastime we give other people presents.

HER: Like glass slippers? People are giving me glass slippers?

ME: Maybe, but that's not my point. We give to other people too.

HER: Glass slippers? They give me glass slippers?

ME: No. Well, maybe. But Teacher is collecting presents to give to other kids. I bought these panties and socks for you to give to another little girl.

HER: But I want glass slippers.

ME: The panties and socks are not for you. You are going to take them to school, give them to Teacher to give to another little girl as a gift.


I have to say, I feel a little bit like a sh*tty mother to hear this conversation. We've been hyping up this Santa thing and being good and getting presents thing since October. We failed to instill the notion that we give to others as well.

This morning, I gave her the package of panties and socks and a gift bag. I told her that we need to wrap them and she will take them to Teacher in the morning. She started to understand... We also talked about making cookies to give to her teachers as a Christmas present before school lets out for the holidays. I will take her out to shop for her sister and hopefully the concept of the "season of giving" will set in.

In the mean time, this gift wants glass slippers.

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