Monday, December 8, 2008


Last week, I suggested to Bug and Bear that they take half of their Christmas checks from Mamaw and use the money to buy presents for a child whose family can't afford Christmas presents. They loved the idea and chose to put their week's allowance into the pot as well. I told them that I would cover any extra expense.

The elementary school always has an Angel Tree in the front office, decorated with paper angels, each filled out with a child's age and gender (names are kept private) and one of the things they would like for Christmas. Each child has four angels on the tree, so one person might be buying clothes for the child, one a coat and boots, and the other two toys.

They took their time examining each of the angels left on the tree. Bug chose a six-year-old boy who wants Legos for Christmas. Bear picked a nine-year-old boy who needs new shirts. We made a quick stop at the bank, where they happily cashed their checks, counting out half for their wallets and handing half to me for our Angel shopping.

At Target, I let the girls take the lead. I helped them to compare prices and check quality, but all of the final selections were theirs. Bug spent quite awhile in the Lego aisle, comparing the different sets and making sure that she chose the one with the "coolest parts." Here are her final selections:
Bear was careful not to buy any "sissy" shirts. She told me how everybody wears a new outfit on the first day back to school after Christmas vacation, and she wanted to make sure this little guy had some cool shirts to choose from. She was able to get him five.
I loved how proud they were of their purchases. They were both so excited to show Daddy Shortbread and explain why they made each selection. They were anxious for his approval, since he represents the Boy Opinion in this household. He reassured them that they had made solid choices and expressed particular interest in wishing he could play with the Indiana Jones Lego set, which made Bug glow with pride. The merits of various wrapping papers were discussed (too girly? too young? too shiny?). They both insisted on wrapping their own gifts, smacking away my hand when I tried to help. I was relegated to ribbon-tying and corralling certain cats, who felt that they should be allowed to help wrap presents, too. And by "wrap presents", I mean run around like furry maniacs in the loose tissue paper.
Christmas morning, while my two are opening their presents from Santa and all their loving relatives, I'll take a moment to think of the two little boys opening these carefully chosen and wrapped gifts, never knowing that their angels are my angels, too.


Nana said...

What a great picture of the girls holding their wrapped gifts! They are both glowing with pride as well they should be. I'm very proud of them for being willing to use some of their own money to buy Christmas gifts for less-fortunate children.

Aunt Fabulous and I each "adopted" a child again this Christmas,and we got together yesterday to wrap the gifts we bought for them. It felt so good knowing we were making Christmas special for two children who would not otherwise be getting presents.

I'm glad Bear and Bug are learning at an early age that giving to others is what Christmas is all about. You and Daddy Shortbread are teaching them well!

parnola said...

It looks like the girls made excellent choices, except I think a better Lego set could have been chosen. A couple suggestions:

Lego Eifel Tower

Lego Death Star

As a former Lego junky, I can attest that I would have been thrilled to receive either of those!

#1quiltinggrandma said...

Jenn, it makes us happy that you are teaching girls, "It if better to give, than to received." I have always love giving, it does feel good! They done good :-)

#1quiltinggrandma said...

Oops, correction "the girls." :-(

Nana said...

What is the green design on the white shirt?

jenn said...

It's a basketball, sorta stylized.