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Gifting from the Heart

September 18, 2013
She's got a heart of gold!

She’s got a heart of gold!

The Little One has a huge heart. She is goofy, silly and will do just about anything for a laugh. But she is also very empathetic. She is a champion for the underdog. She is the first to comfort another child if they are hurt, sad or otherwise upset. She has taken on kids at least twice her size when she felt her big sister was being bullied at the park. She shares her piggy bank money freely and is always offering to buy dinner, groceries or ice cream. She loves to give to others. She is a great example for all.

……

So at 8 p.m. last night when she all the sudden remembered that today is her teacher’s birthday, I knew I was in trouble. Birthdays must be recognized. They must be celebrated. The birthday girl needs to receive a gift. I have no problem with this concept, except it was 8 p.m.   Where was this information all afternoon and evening? The girls get home from school around 2:30 p.m. every day. This means she had five and a half hours that she could have mentioned to me that it was her teacher’s birthday, but she did not. She forgot she says.

……

The way she first told me of her dilemma was by asking me out of the blue at 8 p.m. if I had any flowers lying around the house. I told her no and probed why she wanted flowers. Did I mention it was 8 p.m. and I was trying desperately to get her in bed?  Yes, 8 p.m. is the witching hour for this mom. Children need to be in bed before 8 p.m. if they don’t want their dreams haunted by the “mean mom.”

……

Turns out she made an “envelope” during free choice at school, so she had that ready, but we needed to make a card and come up with a gift, again at 8 p.m. I let her work on a card and promised her I would come up with something by morning. I figured if nothing else, I could drop the girls off at school and go pick something up before going to work.

……

So this morning she wakes up at 6 a.m. (seriously, this kid!!) and asks me if I have an empty cup that we could use for her teacher gift. Half asleep, I mumbled something and she disappeared. Now, 6:30 a.m. is my body’s wake-up time, so I got up, showered and headed for the living room.

……

The Little One was in the kitchen pulling out all kinds of cups. I asked her what she was doing and she told me, she was picking a cup to give to her teacher. “A cup?” I asked.  “Yep”, she said proudly. “I want to give her pencils and glue sticks so I need a cup to put them in.”  Now last year for Teacher Appreciation week, I bought those big tumblers and we filled them with pencils and glue sticks for the girls’ teachers. Appropriate for Teacher Appreciation week, yes. But I wasn’t so sure about a teacher birthday. I tried to suggest a couple other ideas. But the Little One was not having any of them. A cup full of pencils and glue sticks was the gift.

……

So because I have some issues with recycling plastic containers, I went to the garage found an empty large container and we stuffed that sucker full of 16 glue sticks and at least 40 pencils, the Little One kept pulling packages out of my stash, so I am not certain how many actually ended up in the container (I may have a school supply hoarding issue, but that’s another blog!).

……

So to the Little One’s teacher, I understand that receiving pencils and glue sticks for your birthday is similar to receiving an iron or vacuum cleaner from your spouse on your birthday and I apologize, that is what the Little One wanted to give.  Maybe we will do better come Teacher Appreciation Week.

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