Steve and Annette Economides were not the first parents to face a toy store with young kids. Stuck between a week of whining or busting the family budget, the couple came up with a simple, but brilliant solution to deal with the “gimmes.”
Start a list.
My toddler doesn’t ask for treats with words, but she points and grabs with the best of them. The wish list will certainly be in my parenting arsenal, as she gets older.
Reasons I believe the wish list works:
- It’s not dismissive of the child. We know our children will survive without another Beyblade action figure, even if they say different. By writing the item down, parents can show concern and interest without shelling out the cash.
- The child is held accountable for their whims. How many times have you purchased that must-have, impulse item only to have it lost and forgotten the next day? If the child has to write the item down and wait for purchase, chances are they will forget all about it. If they do remember the item, it might be time to pull out their—not your—piggy bank.
- There is no limit on the child’s imagination. When I was a kid, my wish list might have included a Rainbow Brite doll, Strawberry Shortcake videos, and that car from the Back to the Future movies. Okay, my chances of getting those suicide car doors were low, but it’s nice to let kids dream.
- Wish lists can be handy for gifting on birthdays and holidays.
There will always be some toy, treat, or thingamabob that your child must have. Writing a list beats writing a check.
To my readers: How do you deal with your child’s desire for stuff? Ever had a meltdown at the toy store? Has anyone started holiday shopping?