My love language is probably gift giving. I LOVE to give gifts and this is something I want to pass along to my kids. The trickier part can be figuring out how to gift shop with them.
As Elias and Adeline have been getting older, I have been looking for ways to involve them in gift giving. Hallmark recently sent me a gift card, so I decided to take the kids' shopping to buy some gifts.
She made a beeline for the Itty Bittys (naturally!) and I told her that she could pick four. She went back and forth for 10 minutes regarding what princess she should get Olivia. Pick up Jasmine, put her back. Pick up Snow White, put her back.
She finally landed on Snow White, Cinderellla, Aurora and Ariel.
- Have a plan: I knew where the kid gifts were in our Hallmark and I steered my kids right there. By having a plan, your kids won't be distracted by the overwhelming options at the store.
- Set a budget: I knew I wanted to spend between $20-$25 on Olivia's gift, so I was able to tell Adeline that she could select 4 Itty Bittys. That budget made it easy to tell her no when items were too expensive. It was also a teachable moment about money and only buying what we can afford.
- Be patient: It is very exciting for a toddler to gift shop, so be patient. They will likely want lots of things and change their mind a lot. It takes longer to shop with toddlers, so taking an extra dose of patience with you will make it more enjoyable for everyone.
- Don't buy anything for your child: Make the shopping trip all about the gift buying. The lesson would not have been as powerful if Adeline had gotten to chose an Itty Bitty for herself too.
- Celebrate generosity: When your child selects a gift, praise their kindness, acknowledge how much the recipient will love it and talk about how it is always better to give than to receive. This lesson can carry over when you go home and wrap the gift, take it to the birthday party, etc.
Shopping might wear your toddler out, but the lessons will last a lifetime.