It hadn't occurred to me...what the frenzy of gift-giving and receiving can do to the child like Joseph, who has not had many possessions or received many gifts, especially at one time. These children have never experienced such a deluge of presents in their lives and it can put them--literally--into a tailspin from the over-stimulation.
Thankfully, my friend, Carrie, who adopted two of Joseph's best buddies (you might remember my blogs about her and how we met), very recently shared about how they decided to stretch their family's gift-giving over the course of four days to make for a less overwhelming scenario.
Call me a copycat, but we decided to try something similar. At Madi's urging, we agreed to let the kids do their gift exchange this morning, and it was beautiful.
Joseph had desperately wanted Batman legos, and he got them from his sister. Big score and a smile a mile wide! And Charlie, he got Superman legos that he "always wanted."
Charlie and Joseph were so excited to give Madi the presents they chose for her. Can you tell? She got a deck of Frozen Uno cards and a family game called Hedbandz. I think these will be great fun for bonding!
So...this is the most precious part. Last week, when the kids were in school and Joseph and I were heading home from morning drop-offs, Joseph became totally exasperated trying to tell me something. He was trying so very hard, and I thought I knew what he was getting at, so I asked him, "Are you saying you want to get a Christmas present for Madi and Charlie?" He replied with his standard, "Ah," which means yes. He seemed so relieved that I knew. It brought the sting of tears to my eyes to see how happy he was at the idea of getting each of them a gift. Joseph loves them both so much, and he is such a sweet boy.
We headed over to CVS, since I needed a few other things, and I knew their gift selection wouldn't be too overwhelming for him. It didn't take us long to find the perfect gifts...whimsical tins of popcorn. He loved them! He picked out a Santa theme for Madi, and a Rudolph theme for Charlie. We took them home and, together, we wrapped them. And then, when Madi and Charlie got home from school, Joseph promptly--and proudly--told them what he'd done! Even though they knew in advance what they were getting, I was so proud of Madi and Charlie for being so excited and gracious with their brother's gifts this morning.
One of the best parts of our morning came after. Our dear friend and neighbor, Ruby, called and asked if the kids would want to go to the fire station to deliver cookies to the firefighters. It was such a great experience and what fun for Joseph to sit in a fire engine for the first time!
Merry, merry Christmas to you and yours! May it be filled with all of the peace and joy that the our Lord and Savior brings~