The kids are really into going to the tip shop and charity shops. I get that it is like a treasure trove and you never know what you will find. The thing I find hard is that often it is because they just want to spend the money, “its burning a hole in your pocket” is what my mum would have said, they don’t care that they don’t want for anything they will spend it anyway. They were dragging the bottom of the barrel today… another jewelry box and tiny soft toy dinosaur.
I have to steer them away from the free box. They find it hard not to take things when they are free… “but it’s free”… Except it isn’t. Every item they bring home has to go somewhere, everything they bring home takes up space in our brains, everytime they get a hit from the new thing they want more new things. Each new thing is the toy of the week, except when we go more than once to the tip shop and then the new thing may get only one night in the sun. H has been known to take such stuff to bed and then a week later have no idea what could have happened to it. One of the reasons I want to live in the country is to remove this process from our lives as no shops = no new stuff….
H even wants to visit toy shops to just look which I dont get… after all before we go there is nothing missing from her life but as soon as we have been there is a list in her head of things she “needs”… she doesn’t… and she certainly doesn’t see any of the environmental cost of these new things, some of which are basically landfill having their brief spell as something desirable. I try to communicate this cost to the environment (landfill, mining, energy etc) and I keep stuff for ages, I repair all to make these choices of objects be more permanent – make that decision count.. all to very little success. I remember some nice young woman handing out a free gift of a tacky keychain to promote some thing, she just couldn’t get that it wasn’t free. Sometimes I get long jealous rants from H about the stuff that the neighbors kids get and it’s true she sees lots of kids having lots of stuff. However H is still choosing to have “just because” presents rather than Christmas but this is partly due to me asking her this when she really wants something and Christmas is miles away. I do buy her presents but often they are needs – new togs as she has grown for example. Stuff just disgusts me on the whole, except books but I am getting over that thanks to a good library and borrow box.
Todays visit to a charity shop has brought on a Christmas party in the garden possibly due to all the displays at the charity shop… it’s for their guys, the new soft toy dinosaur and another recent dog toy…
They are even worrying about the catering, games… the themed stories.. and music! Santa has a paper beard and came to tell a story! All of the fun none of the stress? The preparation has of course taken longer than the event itself…
The timeline was: Simon says, a thing off the tree each, santa came and read, a little present, pass the parcel, “tea”, pop the charity shop cracker, and lastly the big presents…. maybe more stuff will leave our house than came in.
They are already planning next weeks Christmas party.