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Do your children make Christmas wish lists?


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My girls will often mention some things they would like, or I listen out for what they are talking about. Sometimes I ask them to give me some Christmas ideas. But I have never asked or encouraged them to write out a Christmas wish list, and they have never asked to write one. Somehow it just seems kinda...I don't know...something...

 

Just wondering...

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My girls will often mention some things they would like, or I listen out for what they are talking about. Sometimes I ask them to give me some Christmas ideas. But I have never asked or encouraged them to write out a Christmas wish list, and they have never asked to write one. Somehow it just seems kinda...I don't know...something...

 

Just wondering...

 

No, for the reason you said.

 

Birthday lists, yes, b/c aunts, uncles, big siblings, grandparents are always asking what to get them, but Christmas, no.

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My dds make a list because we are not near any of our family and they will start asking the girls what they want around Sept/Oct. So, now the girls make a list of things they would really like and I am able to share it with grandparents, aunts and uncles. The families really want to be able to give them something they want since they get to see them so rarely.

 

Also, there are many other kiddos for the grandparents, aunts and uncles to buy gifts for so it just makes it easier on them to have some ideas.

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No, for the reason you said.

 

Birthday lists, yes, b/c aunts, uncles, big siblings, grandparents are always asking what to get them, but Christmas, no.

 

 

Funny, for us it's the opposite. They don't make lists or request certain things for birthdays but they do for Christmas.

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Ahhh... It is the greedy time of year.

 

Yes, I encourage dd to make out a list. There are so many things I can't remember from one day to the next. Dd's wish list is one of them.

 

When I was a kid I'd make out my list, give it to my mom to mail to Santa and would get nothing from the list. I'd get so mad at Santa, then later at her. Sheesh, couldn't the two of them read? That said yellow yo-yo not pink lip gloss.

 

In other words, if I'm going to spend the money, I want to spend it on something I know dd wants.

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My dds make a list because we are not near any of our family and they will start asking the girls what they want around Sept/Oct. So, now the girls make a list of things they would really like and I am able to share it with grandparents, aunts and uncles. The families really want to be able to give them something they want since they get to see them so rarely.

 

Also, there are many other kiddos for the grandparents, aunts and uncles to buy gifts for so it just makes it easier on them to have some ideas.

Our kids do and for the same reasons that FLmom listed.

Funny, for us it's the opposite. They don't make lists or request certain things for birthdays but they do for Christmas.

Same here!

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Funny, for us it's the opposite. They don't make lists or request certain things for birthdays but they do for Christmas.

 

 

That is funny - I think I do birthday lists because I HATE where my mil and where my mom would buy them clothes so if I give them other ideas, then no clothes that we hate.

 

Christmas - the kids and dh and i will talk about what they should reasonably expect might be an appropriate Christmas gift and from there spring the suggestions that dh or I will make to grandparents.

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Oh, absolutely! It occupies my youngest for hours, lol. It's a fond memory from my own childhood as well.

 

I fail to see the fine nuances that separate mentioning things they want versus making a list??? :001_huh:

 

I guess I am a little sore right now. There is a family in our church that is hurting financially. I have offered to help them buy a few small things for their daughters (ages 10 and 16) for Christmas. We have had our share of financial struggles this summer, but we will have some extra money next month, so I really want to help them. Well, tonight I got to see their Christmas lists. WHOA NELLIE!!! Trampoline, Wii, laptop, flat screen TV, etc. There are a few things on there that I can actually afford, but for the most part, it is a list of large ticket items. It just seemed so greedy. To be honest, it kind of took the joy out of wanting, and being able to, help them. I know I shouldn't let that steal my joy, but all the same, it kinda does.

 

I can understand letting family know what children want. I have a brother who lives in another state, and he always asks me what the girls want for their birthdays and Christmas, and I give him some ideas. Same goes for my mom and my father in law, who never seem to know what to get my kids. I guess I am just picturing kids sitting down and writing these long lists and then really expecting to get every single thing on there. Does that make sense?

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I guess I am a little sore right now. There is a family in our church that is hurting financially. I have offered to help them buy a few small things for their daughters (ages 10 and 16) for Christmas. We have had our share of financial struggles this summer, but we will have some extra money next month, so I really want to help them. Well, tonight I got to see their Christmas lists. WHOA NELLIE!!! Trampoline, Wii, laptop, flat screen TV, etc. There are a few things on there that I can actually afford, but for the most part, it is a list of large ticket items. It just seemed so greedy. To be honest, it kind of took the joy out of wanting, and being able to, help them. I know I shouldn't let that steal my joy, but all the same, it kinda does.

 

Wow! I said my dds make a Christmas list but they have never included such big ticket items. The most expensive thing they have ever asked for was an American Girl doll - which they did get two years ago. They were so surprised because they didn't think they would actually get one. My older dd's list usually consists of specific Converse shoes she wants and younger dd's list is usually which Littlest Pet Shop set she wants. They never expect to get everything on their list.

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I encourage my kids to write lists. They certainly don't expect to get everything on their lists. They know that "Santa" brings one big gift for each and stuffs their stockings while Mom and Dad buy them each 3 gifts (something they want, something they need, and something to share). They also know that their aunts, uncles, and grandparents will most likely send small gifts and appreciate some direction in gift buying to prevent redundant gifts or gifts that are not akin with their interests. Because of that, there is typically only one "large" item listed and the rest tend to be games, books, or a type/genre of toys such as "Lego" or "Hello Kitty" or what have you.

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We're big list makers here. I have so much trouble finding exactly what I want when I'm buying for myself that it's useless for my hubby or others to try and guess at that "just right" item for a gift. I hate to waste money and I'm enough of a minimalist that I just won't keep things around that I don't intend to use or want my kids to use.

 

It stresses me out to no end to try and buy for others who don't have a wish list. I have some extended family members who want to be fussed over. They love for someone to see a sweater or some jewelry and think, "Oh, this looks just like so-and-so. I'll buy it for her." I can't even figure out what I like for myself. I'm absolutely horrible about predicting what other people would like.

 

I have found this is offensive to some family members. I particularly don't like non-list gift exchanges with extended family members. If we could limit it to a baked goods/ornament exchange, it would be tolerable. (Honestly, I don't even need *that*!) But it doesn't stop there. It seems like many people use the whole gift exchange as a yardstick by which to measure your love for/relationship with them. If your idea of a good gift doesn't match mine, then I've been inconsiderate or thoughtless. Sheesh!!! I'd love to get together and enjoy everyone's company and not play games. Call me a grinch, but I'd be fine never to swap Christmas gifts with any extended family again!(aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings) But that's not popular in my family, nor in many others. I'm not allowed to back out of the family gift exchange because....take your pick....it would break tradition, I'm a party pooper, someone's feelings will be hurt, and on and on. So it ceases to be a gift. Instead it's an uncomfortable obligation. And if we resort to buying from lists for one another, then we're just swapping cash. I agree. Completely. Let's. Just. Stop it!!! You'll feel loved (or not) because I guessed at a gift for you. I'll go home with what you bought me (that I never would have spent money on). And I'll donate my gift, and likely those of my husband and 5 kids.

 

Back to the original topic: I find that when my kids make lists, we waste very little money, time, or effort. I don't give them gifts during the year. Christmas and birthdays are it for us. They each have a budget or sorts. They know how much money will be spent, and it actually works very well. They like to see how far they can stretch their Christmas money. They would rather have a choice in the matter, and I get to avoid the angst of guessing what each one might like. I also don't have to worry about disappointing someone on Christmas morning.

 

One caveat: I also buy gifts for my boys as a group that are not part of the lists. When they were younger, I'd buy more expensive Playmobil sets for them as a group, pogo sticks, stilts, Dr. Drew's building blocks--all things that were too expensive to give as a gift to just one child. Now, I'll get games, dvds, sports equipment, memberships, season passes...the kinds of things everyone in the family can enjoy. These are usually a surprise, but they know I'll be getting group gifts in addition to individual gifts.

 

One last thing that's somewhat of a surprise. Every year each boy gets a t-shirt and an ornament unique to him. Ds #1 is into Owl City, so he'll get one of their t-shirts this year. Ds#2 is collecting license plates right now, so he'll get a license plate ornament. Ds #3 has joined Boy Scouts this year, so he'll get a Scouting ornament. Same kind of thing for Ds #4 and 5.

 

All of this is not to say that I haven't worried about the sense of entitlement that's inherent when people choose their gifts. It is somewhat of an oxymoron, I suppose, to pick your own gifts to be given. Some folks would say it ceases to be a gift. I don't know.

 

I will say this. Every once in a while I do find an item that jumps out at me that I just have to purchase for a friend or family member. A friend of mine participates every October for the whole month in the Texas State Fair. I saw a Currier and Ives print recently for a State Fair scene. I wasn't bold enough to buy the print, but I did buy a fridge magnet version. I think it will be meaningful to her because of the fair aspect. It's a classy, but small gift, and I thought of her when I saw it. For me, however, this is rare. I'll stick to my lists for the most part!

Edited by ThelmaLou
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We make lists, all of us. Around Halloween, I start a wish list on the fridge. Each person can add little things to the list as they think of them.

 

We do it because....

 

I start shopping early.

 

Dh likes to have lots of ideas for me. People ask him what I want for Christmas, and he has a small list of ideas.

 

MIL will buy weird crazy stuff if we don't.

 

It's fun.

 

We all know that we can put anything on the list. Mine has a new car, a magic wand--a real one this time!--and a bike tune-up, which dh can do himself. We all know that we may not get a single thing from the list. We make it a game instead of a demand for stuff.

 

Cat

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Nah, ours don't, but that's only because they already know what they're getting for Christmas. It's the same every year: a book each, plus whatever they choose from the TEAR catalog. I'm sure, though, that if we ever really got into the Christmas presents thing, they would be more than happy to write lists of stuff they'd like.

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We put one on Amazon for the grandparents. He does write a letter to Santa, but he only asks for 3 things (that's all Santa brings), so he gives those 3 things a lot of thought. Of course Santa always brings those 3 things (though we always tell him that it's not guaranteed). I just know what he likes, so I pick up a few things in Oct and Nov before the big rush.

 

We try not to make Christmas a big gift grab (hence the 3 presents from Santa rule), but as he is (until next April) an only grandchild on my side, my parents often go a bit insane. I tell them every year to keep it to just a few gifts (and I only put a few things on the Amazon wish list), but it never works. Last year he got his 3 Santa gifts, 3 gifts from us, 1 puzzle from the dogs (they always buy him a gift, aren't they sweet?) and my parents sent him like 10 or 12 more. :glare: He gets overwhelmed with all the stuff. He's really good about clearing out old toys before Christmas, but he still gets so much stuff.

 

My mom and step dad are coming over here for Christmas this year and we'll be doing a lot of traveling, which costs money, so I'm hoping that will mean there won't be so many toys. He's just happy they're coming. He doesn't need a lot of stuff. My dad came over last Christmas and Indy told him (my dad) that spending Christmas with him was the best gift. My sweet boy.

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<snip> tonight I got to see their Christmas lists. WHOA NELLIE!!! Trampoline, Wii, laptop, flat screen TV, etc. There are a few things on there that I can actually afford, but for the most part, it is a list of large ticket items.<snip>

I guess I am just picturing kids sitting down and writing these long lists and then really expecting to get every single thing on there. Does that make sense?

 

Sure, that makes perfect sense, but that wasn't your OP, ;).

 

I have had the exact same experience with 'angel trees' and such, where the kids were asking for stuff that I would never in a million years buy for my OWN kids, lol. I think it would be much more kind if the event organizers gave some guidance on writing the lists, because, the appearance of greediness aside, surely they must be disappointed, b/c I can't imagine their lists are fulfilled very often.

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I ask my kids to make lists in the fall. They have fall birthdays. They are aware of appropriate price ranges. For something big it might be combined bd/christmas present. One year my ds wanted a drum kit--that ended up combined bd/christmas from mom, dad/nana/and grandma, granddad.

 

We've financial issues over the years and they know they may not get everything. I would rather spend money on things I know they want. They have a couple of aunts who buy them small presents too--the list helps me tell them something when they call for ideas.

 

Additionally, we have family traditions other than getting presents that emphasize the season. We put together a food basket for a needy family. We shop together for the local homeless shelter--not just toys, but basics: toiletries, underwear, winter coats. It gets you thinking when you realize someone doesn't have underwear. And we have a few traditions that emphasize spending time together. So, I'm not worried a list will make them greedy.

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I guess I am a little sore right now. There is a family in our church that is hurting financially. I have offered to help them buy a few small things for their daughters (ages 10 and 16) for Christmas. We have had our share of financial struggles this summer, but we will have some extra money next month, so I really want to help them. Well, tonight I got to see their Christmas lists. WHOA NELLIE!!! Trampoline, Wii, laptop, flat screen TV, etc. There are a few things on there that I can actually afford, but for the most part, it is a list of large ticket items. It just seemed so greedy. To be honest, it kind of took the joy out of wanting, and being able to, help them. I know I shouldn't let that steal my joy, but all the same, it kinda does.

 

I can understand letting family know what children want. I have a brother who lives in another state, and he always asks me what the girls want for their birthdays and Christmas, and I give him some ideas. Same goes for my mom and my father in law, who never seem to know what to get my kids. I guess I am just picturing kids sitting down and writing these long lists and then really expecting to get every single thing on there. Does that make sense?

 

what a wonderful thing that you want to do for them! :grouphug:

 

i can understand why the 'lists' set off that type of feeling... but i do have a question: are these lists that the DAUGHTERS wrote? if the lists were created by the daughters (and not solely by the parents) then what you may want to consider is that these girls might see all/many of their friends, school mates, etc, with these things and be dreaming of the same.

 

if the parents just told them to 'make a christmas list' - i can totally see that happening. if the girls don't know WHY they were asked to make a list (parents don't want them to know about 'help'?) then it would be difficult for mom or dad to say 'oh this isn't what we meant' ....or whatever.... know what i mean?

 

if the girls made the lists...well, you can't really blame them for 'wishing', right? (my dd13 has a vehicle on her current list! she knows dang well that she's not getting a truck for christmas LOL but she stuck it on there anyway because it's a wish. ;) )

 

if the PARENTS made the lists - well..... i guess i'd prolly consider that they may also be feeling like they can't give their girls the "normal" things that other families have (note that i put that in quotes!) and i'd try to be understanding about it. of course i wouldn't go buy those things (unless i was crazy rich) but i'd try not to get upset with them ---- i've been the mom in a very low income family before and i know what it's like to feel like you can't give your kids the same things that "all the other kids" seem to have.

 

regardless of what went down ~ you rock for wanting to help them out. :D

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Our kids do - sort of. They have an Amazon wish list and through the year if they find something they really want, but we can't afford to buy at the time, we'll add the item to their wish list, noting who it is for. The entire extended family use the wish list as a guide of what to buy and most buy off the list itself. We started doing this because the grandparents kept asking for a list, year after year; and this way the list is there all year and is filled with things the kids really want (one set of grandparents start Christmas shopping early in the year).

 

We aren't buying off their list though. :001_smile: We found things the kids really, really wanted and didn't put them on the list for two reasons - we wanted to buy the items ourselves, and they were more expensive than anyone else could afford. We do try to keep the items we put on their list within a reasonable price range.

 

The kids do know that an item being on the list does not mean that they will definitely get said item. The list is a mixture of all the things they want and if someone wants to buy them something then that person can choose from the list, if they want to. The kids know they're not going to get everything on the list! :001_smile:

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Sure, that makes perfect sense, but that wasn't your OP, ;).

 

I have had the exact same experience with 'angel trees' and such, where the kids were asking for stuff that I would never in a million years buy for my OWN kids, lol. I think it would be much more kind if the event organizers gave some guidance on writing the lists, because, the appearance of greediness aside, surely they must be disappointed, b/c I can't imagine their lists are fulfilled very often.

 

You're right. I wasn't clear about why I was asking in my OP. I promise I'm not judging those of you who do ask or encourage your children to write Christmas list. We never did it growing up, and my kids have never done it, so I guess I was just curious.

 

what a wonderful thing that you want to do for them! :grouphug:

 

i can understand why the 'lists' set off that type of feeling... but i do have a question: are these lists that the DAUGHTERS wrote? if the lists were created by the daughters (and not solely by the parents) then what you may want to consider is that these girls might see all/many of their friends, school mates, etc, with these things and be dreaming of the same.

 

if the parents just told them to 'make a christmas list' - i can totally see that happening. if the girls don't know WHY they were asked to make a list (parents don't want them to know about 'help'?) then it would be difficult for mom or dad to say 'oh this isn't what we meant' ....or whatever.... know what i mean?

 

if the girls made the lists...well, you can't really blame them for 'wishing', right? (my dd13 has a vehicle on her current list! she knows dang well that she's not getting a truck for christmas LOL but she stuck it on there anyway because it's a wish. ;) )

 

if the PARENTS made the lists - well..... i guess i'd prolly consider that they may also be feeling like they can't give their girls the "normal" things that other families have (note that i put that in quotes!) and i'd try to be understanding about it. of course i wouldn't go buy those things (unless i was crazy rich) but i'd try not to get upset with them ---- i've been the mom in a very low income family before and i know what it's like to feel like you can't give your kids the same things that "all the other kids" seem to have.

 

regardless of what went down ~ you rock for wanting to help them out. :D

 

The lists are lists that the daughters wrote and then the mother typed up on her computer for me to see. I understand what you're saying, and I'm not going to let it stop me from doing this for them.

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I have mine do lists (have for a long time) esp. since their b'days are Jan/Feb. They know they won't get everything, but there are specific items (particular books, cds, etc) that I would never remember the right one if it were not written down.

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Yes!

I could never keep track of it all without lists.

We make it clear they are only getting a few items on the lists so none of them expect to get all or even the majority of what is on their list.

 

I'm not sure if you're thinking it promotes greediness...? It hasn't here.

Its promoted organization and sanity for mom and dad.:D

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I encourage them to make lists, because honestly, I can't remember or understand what the heck they are talking about. One wants a Jango Fett action figure, the other wants a Boba Fett action figure, one wants a super battle droid, and the other wants a commando droid. Don't even get me started on the Bakugan business! Or the Nara battling bugs. If I didn't have specifics written down, I would stand in the aisles at the store in complete and utter confusion.

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My kids start making lists some time in August. When the Christmas catalogs start rolling in, they are occupied for hours. Our Rainbow Resource catalog is already marked up and initialed:glare:. We generally only buy new toys at Christmas or on birthdays, so my kids take these pretty seriously. We don't encourage it. They are just goofy.

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Yes, because grandparents and other relatives ask for them. The lists are brief, 3-5 items that they need or would truly enjoy. I also provide clothing sizes. I hate returning gifts. Supplying lists significantly reduces the number of inappropriate gifts. Most items on my children's lists cost less than $30.

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No. I've never wanted ds to focus on the things he wants long enough to make a list, which I think is what you're getting at?

 

Both my family and dh's family live in other states and they do ask me what ds wants for Christmas. I like to be able to give them ideas. I think one way that ds and his grandparents and aunts and uncles can be close is for ds to feel like they know his interests. So I keep a running list of things he's mentioned or things that I come across that I think ds would like for when I'm asked.

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DD10 said the sweetest thing to me just before her b-day (earlier this month). I was teasing her and asked her, "are you worried that I'll get you something you don't want?" and she said, "no, because you know me and you know what I like, so I trust that whatever you get me will be something I like." :) We got her an iPod shuffle. She's barely taken it off for 2 weeks now.

 

To answer the question, my kids will make lists, but they make lists for everything. I never encourage them to do it and they know that their "big present" will not be more than $40 (except last year when we got our dog).

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To answer the question, my kids will make lists, but they make lists for everything.

 

Yes! Mine, too, We joke that Posey emerged from the womb with a pencil in one hand and a steno book in the other, :D. Recently heard in my house:

 

Let's make a list of things we can do in the car (on a long drive).

 

Let's make a list of things we want to do on Halloween.

 

Let's make a list of things we know how to cook.

 

And, of course, now that it's catalog season, Let's make our Christmas list!

 

My children aren't greedy, merely a bit OCD.

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I guess I am just picturing kids sitting down and writing these long lists and then really expecting to get every single thing on there. Does that make sense?

 

I could see that being really off-putting.

 

If someone who does not know our Christmas tradition saw my kids' lists, they might think the same thing. But my children know that it's a dream-list for their wishes, and that they won't get it all. They might not get any of it! If they weren't so delighted and grateful for every little tiny thing they do get, I might feel very differently about lists!

 

I'll bet that those children know, at least in part, that their family is struggling financially and will be happy and grateful on Christmas morning. :) You're lovely to help bless this family.

 

Cat

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I guess I am a little sore right now. There is a family in our church that is hurting financially. I have offered to help them buy a few small things for their daughters (ages 10 and 16) for Christmas. We have had our share of financial struggles this summer, but we will have some extra money next month, so I really want to help them. Well, tonight I got to see their Christmas lists. WHOA NELLIE!!! Trampoline, Wii, laptop, flat screen TV, etc.

 

Eeek! When I said we let the boys make lists for my siblings and grandparents, this is NOT the type of things they put down! Usually, it's a few books, a board game or two, a specific LEGO set ... that sort of thing. I can't IMAGINE asking my own parents for a flat screen tv, laptop, or Wii much less someone outside the family!!!

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Eeek! When I said we let the boys make lists for my siblings and grandparents, this is NOT the type of things they put down! Usually, it's a few books, a board game or two, a specific LEGO set ... that sort of thing. I can't IMAGINE asking my own parents for a flat screen tv, laptop, or Wii much less someone outside the family!!!

 

Yikes! :iagree:While my kids are certainly welcome to wish for a laptop, flat screen, etc on some sort of private "Dream List" there is NO WAY that I'd allow them to put that on a Christmas list that would be sent out for family members, etc looking for realistic ideas. We really try to stress to the kids that Christmas is not about the gifts, particularly not really expensive gifts.

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No. Grandma would really like them to, but, we don't visit toy stores much and we don't watch television, so the kids really don't know what to put on a list. Sometimes they will ask for a toy that just plain doesn't exist.

 

I know what their interests are and search for things I know they will like and I make a list for Grandma.

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absolutely. Because I don't know all the 'new' things that are out, and each one is so different I couldn't possibly guess as to what each one wants. AND, my oldest makes me a master list with pictures (yes, I need the pictures) *g* Now, Dh and I heavily edit those lists. Many times there isn't one of what they want or we know that they'll lose interest in whatever it is within minutes of owning it.

 

ahh I just scrolled and read what happened. yeah. :glare: if a stranger at church offered me what you did, there is NO way I'd let my kids put that stuff on their list. that said, maybe they just don't know any better?

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My DDs make lists, but they're only for their top 3-4 items. I've always kept it like that and not allowed huge long lists. They know that Santa needs to carry presents to lots of kids all over the world, so can only bring a few things.

 

Plus, the one year we didn't give Grandma specific ideas was pretty disastrous. Grandma needs concrete!

 

ETA: I definitely see what you're saying about the family at church though. That's off-putting to say the least.

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My kids have Amazon wish lists. Most of my nieces and nephews do too. It works great for our family, because we are spread out all over the country (and world now with one ex-pat family). Since we don't live close enough to know the specific interests of all the children or what they may already own, having a list of ideas is super helpful. We even wrap the gifts for our own children sent by family members and they do they same for the gifts we send. Amazon loves us!!

 

So we have lists, however I make them. I let my kiddos window shop on occasion and tell me what they like and I otherwise have a pretty good idea of other gifts they would like. I do censor their wishes- some items they point out in stores never make it to their lists, for various reasons. For example, every so often they'll be around a friend or cousin who owns a DS and vocalize a desire for one of their own, but we've decided not to go there, so they never make it to their list.

 

When the boys were all younger, their lists were primarily books and games and a few educational toys. My oldest son did just recently wise up to this, and was perusing his own Amazon list and asked me why there were a bunch of "school" books on his list. :toetap05: I reminded him that he likes those books and he agreed, but "not for my birthday!" He told me if I wanted those books, I should put them on my own list. :lol:

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Yes, they make lists. I've been making copies of their Christmas lists since they first started making them. I've got them filed away for them, so when they are older, they can look back at them and see how their Christmas wishes evolved over the years.

 

I figure they will someday appreciate having them as fun mementos of their childhoods. :001_smile:

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Yes, I encourage dd to make out a list. There are so many things I can't remember from one day to the next. Dd's wish list is one of them.

 

 

:iagree:Exactly! When our kids were little, they each made a collage of what they wanted by cutting out the pictures from the wish books and sales fliers and glueing them on a piece of contruction paper.

 

Now, they email me a list in about October or November. I could never have remember what they wanted if I hadn't had lists!

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