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Go Ask Mom

Amanda Lamb: All I want for Christmas

Posted October 31, 2010

Soon after Labor Day anytime my kids ask for something, my response is always the same: "Put it on your Christmas list." This seems to briefly satisfy their material desires, that is, of course, until they realize that they will not get everything on their lists.

Several years ago someone gave me a pre-printed letter to Santa with eight spots for gift requests. So, my children get to ask Santa for eight things. They labor over their choices, using only pencil so they can constantly delete and add to the list as their wishes change. In the beginning, they usually have a hard time coming up with eight things even though they seem to always be asking me for "stuff" throughout the year. There is also the question of what is appropriate.

"Mommy, can I just put 'books' on my list as one line? Can that count as one thing?" she asks, her pencil eraser poised to make a change depending on my answer to her question.

"Yes, small things can be part of a group, one line, that's fine," I say. Her list already includes not-so-small stuff like a wake board that I'm pretty sure Santa is not going to be able to fit in his red sack.

My youngest daughter has an especially hard time with her list, hemming and hawing about getting it just right. She constantly asks me for suggestions as she insists on finishing it in one sitting. When she is finally done, she proudly hands it to me.

Santa definitely has his work cut out for him this year evidenced by item No. 4: "a dog."

Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including one on motherhood called "Smotherhood." Find her here on Mondays.



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  • Amomoftwo Nov 1, 2010

    Many years ago, when our oldest was 3 we told her that Santa would bring 3 gifts just like Baby Jesus got from the wise men....and then she could hope for both our girls have always had 3 things on their list and then Santa adds kepy hubby and I focused on what they really wanted and of course, the surprises were all the other stuff that didn't make the list...At 21 and 16, they still create a list of 3 and we add the surprises!

  • br549znc Nov 1, 2010

    The best, most memorable gift Santa ever brought my children was a puppy. Go for it.

  • shall6 Nov 1, 2010

    Elliesmom ... I'm going to have to remember that when the time comes.


  • elliesmom Nov 1, 2010

    I agree--save those lists!! BTW--if this helps you out, we long ago told our daughter that Santa can't bring live animals. The ride is too scary for them. This seems to have worked. So far. :-)

  • LMRA Nov 1, 2010

    My brother would go through the Sears Wish Book page by page and write down everything he wanted - or thought he might want. Pages and pages of stuff. My list would say 'clothes' and jewelry'

  • snowl Nov 1, 2010

    Put those lists away in your keepsake box for the girls when they grow up. As I have cleaned out my daughters room upon her college moving days, I found some of her old Christmas lists and enjoyed reading them. She says, she can't remember if she actually got those gifts...., so I'd say Santa can relax.