I know better but I still fell into the trap. I spent hours deciding on the perfect gift for my grandkids. Very early on I had purchased some of the longer wood blocks that would expand their block play greatly. I knew this was a good choice but ….. I kept having the nagging feeling of wanting to get the “perfect” gift that would bring a huge smile and squeals of joy. Then came my fated trip to Toys R Us.
I haven’t been there in a long while but I new they had Calico Critters and Anna is at a great age for enjoying these cute little play animals. To my surprise and delight, they were even ON SALE! All this contributed to my admittedly “Grammy Gone Wild” moment.
As I wrapped the gifts I actually decided to hold a couple of things back for birthdays but truly, I gave more than I originally intended. I told myself, “This one more thing will be so much fun.” I fell into the trap of thinking that MORE is BETTER. And yes, to be fair, Anna enjoyed the Calico Critters (which she called Little Creatures.) She and I exclaimed over all the little accessories that came with her tree house. (I apologized to her parents for creating a hard situation with all those little things in a house with an active, soon-to-be one year old.) But, Anna loved it all! Yes!! I did it!
It was later, though, that I came to realize what Anna truly wanted from me. The truth came to me as she said to me,
“Will you play with me please, Grammy?”
It was what I have always known and I what I have often talked about – even in this blog:
Children most importantly want their parents’ (and grandparents’) attention, involvement and time.
God talked to me during the Christmas Eve service at Grace United Methodist Chruch. The sermon was about this very thing. Pastor Nanette Roberts preached about being truly present during our Christmas celebrations. She reminded us to put the phones down, to limit our Facebook time and to make those important connections with each other – just as the shepherds did as they quickly went to be with Jesus. She mentioned a wonderful IKEA commercial that shares this message to parents very elequently. I encourage you to take 2 minutes and 37 seconds to watch this:
By the way, I gave Anna my presence too.