Friday, January 10, 2014

Give a Little Bit

The girls are still little, so we haven't exactly landed on a "Christmas gift strategy" yet. In general I want to keep the gifts to a relative minimum so that the greed and materialism of the season doesn't take over. But- I love those two little munchkins, and good intentions aside, it's almost impossible to resist spoiling them. So we tried to rein it in, and even encouraged others to limit their spending (and focus on practical things if they couldn't help themselves) but somehow both Piper and Fin ended up with mountains of toys and treats. And for all my worry about turning them into gift grubbers, it was so so fun to watch them get into the spirit of giving (and receiving). There's pretty much nothing sweeter than a baby learning about wrapping paper (how does it feel? How does it sound? How does it taste?!) And there may not be a more enthusiastic gift recipient than a two year old (stickers!!!! A book!!!!!! CHAPSTICK!!!!!!!!!!!)

Both of my girls are incredibly blessed, and my heart is full watching their eyes light up over such (relatively) simple pleasures. In the coming years, Dustin and I will have to discuss our thoughts on Santa, spending limits, and how to keep things fair ("poor" Fin didn't get nearly the haul that her big sister did, but since she's got such a grateful spirit- and terrible counting skills- she was fine with it). But for we tried to pick a few things for their "wishlist" and it worked out perfectly. 
I know when we look back on our Christmases, we won't remember, or care, much about what was under the tree, but the gifts the girls got tell a little story about what they're into at this stage of their lives...and it's a fun little snapshot in time for me to record. 

Here's Piper's haul:

Backpack- She is obsessed. She would spend hours zipping and unzipping it, hiding her treasures, and weaseling her chubby arms into the straps. And because she can tote her own lunch into "school" it's a win-win for us too.
Doctor kit- I wasn't totally sure if she would get this yet, but she totally loves giving us "check ups", always finishing with a hopeful, "feel better?!"
Apron, oven mitts and chef hat- Piper is in love with her play kitchen from her birthday (she plays with it every, single, day.) And what's a tiny kitchen without a tiny chef? 
Felt and wood food- did I mention she likes to cook? She's been making us multiple "sammitches" a day. So far my favorite combination might be bacon, pickles and grape jelly. 
Animal alphabet puzzle- She's an animal lover through and through (as long as they're just in puzzle form, not live...)
Stickers, books, and playdoh packs- because you seriously, can never, ever, have too many.

Fin was a little hard to buy for, because she doesn't need much, but then so easy because she's delighted by pretty much anything you show her. Here are a few of her favorite things:

Stuffed bunny- My itty-bitty, teeny-tiny, precious little baby is sleeping in her crib now, so she needs a big kid friend to keep her company. She loves how soft he is. But mostly she likes to eat his ears. (And she's pretty annoyed I removed the tags. They were obviously the best part.)
Grocery bag toys- Now that sounds a little homeless, but it's actual the cutest little set of grocery themed teethers and rattles. It all comes in a fun bag that sings songs (which Piper loves). Fin is just happy she can jam the "veggies" in her mouth. 
Busy toy- it spins, and lights up, and is all around fun to drop on the ground for your mom to pick up over and over and over again. At least that's how she seems to see it. 
Pop up toy- you had one of these- 5 little doors that pop open when you turn a knob, slide as lever, press a button.... But poor Fin has never played with this one for longer than five minutes, because anyone from 1 to 5 seems to think it's the coolest thing they've ever seen. We actually have to set a timer to get Piper to take turns. That's a pretty good toy.
Books- because you can never have too many books. Even when you're a baby.

So they had a pretty good Christmas. But I think maybe I got the best gifts of all: 

Cheesy, yeah. But seriously, with a couple squooshy-faced clowns like these, what else do I need?


  1. Very funny post, and that picture of the two of them is just so cute!! We were able to hold off this year (although grandparents didn't, not really), but I know next year, when Riley actually realized the toys are for her, its going to be so hard!

  2. Oh my Gosh they are so sweet! Sounds like they made out quite nice for Christmas!! We are in the same boat with the whole Santa thing... Our 4 year old is catching on fast, as in asking... Did Santa really come or did you do all of this?? But yeah, maybe "Santa's" meaning will change sooner than later.
    And yes, you can NEVER have too many stickers or play dough ;)

  3. Those pics are amazing! Love how their smiles are as vibrant as the red in their sweet little jammies! Balancing Christmas is tough, but it sounds like you guys did/do a good job of it. And your decorations in the background look great!