Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Santa's Not Bringing Her a Zhu Zhu Pet

Oldest is going to have her first possible Christmas disappointment this year.  I'm not going to the ends of the Earth to find a Zhu Zhu pet for her.  Three justifications reasons:
  1. They look cheap and like they'll entertain for 5 minutes.  A waste.  Sorry, Zhu Zhu, just callin' it like I see it.
  2. I am appalled by the obscene markup some places are doing on them.  Ebay?  Doesn't bother me.  If someone had the foresight to buy several and are now selling them at a profit, go for it.  It's the new American Dream.  But I've heard of stores/shops who've marked them up significantly since the shortage.  Some people might buy at your obnoxious prices, but not this tightwad.
  3. I think this is a good must-have fad for Oldest to learn a little about needs and wants. 
But I'm nervous.  We're taking a calculated risk here, as this could be what leads her down the road to Santa exposure.  I hope that doesn't happen.  For a gifted, extremely, crazily observant kid, she is still very involved with Santa's magic and I don't want to see that end.   She still wants to believe with all her heart. 

And a feel a little guilty, truth be told.  Do we really want a lesson about wants and needs at Christmas?  Any other time, I would have no problem saying, "No cheap Zhu Zhu pet.  Tough."  But Christmas? 

I know I'm making a value judgment here.  If she, say, wanted a must have book that was virtually unavailable due to its popularity (which is laughable, I've never seen that happen), I would pay high prices to get it.

I just can't pull the trigger on Zhu Zhu though. The things are hunks o'junk, right? Right?

In a lot of ways, this pet has become representative of everything I loathe about the materialism of Christmas.  The frenzied buying of fad gifts with no real evaluation of their value to the child.  We don't buy those types of gifts, really.  We don't have Wii or the other gaming systems (I don't even know what they're called).  None of us own I-pods and I'm even having trouble pulling the trigger on my own present this year because I just can't quite cross the threshold that a laptop really is a NEED for me and not just a WANT.  Not to say that there's anything wrong with these things if they are in your house.  They work great for many people.

This little critter really is representative of the battles we will face in the future - sticking to our values in order to try to instill values in our children. 

Maybe it will all turn out ok.  She's usually so bedazzled by everything Santa "knows, just KNOWS" to bring her, she might not notice right away.  But she will eventually say, "Mommy, don't you wonder why Santa didn't bring a Zhu Zhu pet?"  I have my answer all ready.    I think.   But I'm thinking about having Santa write her a note too.  I just wonder which way is best. 

Thoughts?  What would YOU do?
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