Recently a co-worker told me a story about a kindergarten student's take on Santa. Her son is a teacher, and I guess he did his student teaching in a kindergarten class. Around Christmas time, one child asked him how Santa knows whether you're good or bad. Before he could answer, another little girl piped up and said "Jesus tells him". Apparently Jesus has been ratting us out to Santa for years, and we just never knew it.
It put me in mind of some things that have been said at my house in recent weeks. Aren't little kids funny about Christmas? While at home in Wyoming over Thanksgiving, we saw Santa at the local Wal-Mart. It was the first time Sweetpea did not hesitate to go and talk to him, and sit on his lap. When Santa asked her what she wanted for Christmas, she told him five presents. Not four, not six, five. She did not tell him what she wanted in the presents. When I asked her shortly thereafter what Santa was going to bring her, she replied, "Presents and gifts. Red, yellow, blue and green presents and gifts." I could not get any information as to what should be contained in the presents and gifts. I, of course, started to panic since it creates a bit of a problem when you only know Santa will bring presents and gifts, but not what will be in them. Nor does it assist me in my own shopping ventures if I have no idea what Sweetpea wants. It occurred to me that I had done this to my mom when I was a child, or something similar, and I was probably getting what I deserved. I don't remember this, but I have been told, many many times in fact, that one Christmas I refused to tell my parents what I was asking Santa for for Christmas. Anytime I was asked, I would cross my arms, stick my nose in the air, purse my lips and reply "He knows." By the time December rolled around, my mom was beside herself and just knew that whatever it was I was asking for wouldn't make it under the tree. Luckily for her I decided to write Santa a letter. She was able to kipe the letter off of the mailbox after I had gone to school, and low and behold, Santa definitely delivered that year.
It also occurred to me that, since we don't watch a lot of TV with commercials at our house, and don't visit the toy stores or toy aisles on a regular basis, Sweetpea had probably not seen any toys to ask for. So, in our quest to find gifts for our nephews, last weekend we made the trek to the toy store, Sweetpea in tow. We let her take her time and explore the whole store, and sure enough, she found THE greatest toy ever, and has consistently stated that this is what she will ask for from Santa this year. Yay!
The trip to the toy store for me was both exciting and depressing, all at the same time. This is because I found several toys that are either making a comeback, or are still around from when I was a child. In October I found out that this year is the 25th anniversary of the Care Bears. Wal-Mart had a 25th anniversary Tenderheart Care Bear for sale. It is white, with a silver heart on its tummy, a sterling silver nose and Swavorski Crystals in its eyes.
It also comes with a DVD of the original Care Bear movie. Of course I just had to have it. No, not for Sweetpea, for me! I bought one and put it up on the shelf in the closet unopened. (I found out as I was looking for pics for this post that there is also a pink 25th anniversary Care Bear. I may have to have it, too.)
I was especially excited because Care Bears is one of the "stayed around" toys that hasn't changed a bit. They still look exactly like they always did. The same goes for My Little Ponies. While at the toy store, I discovered that 2008 is also the 25th year of My Little Ponies. They are currently offering for sale two packages of three ponies each - the original six ponies released in 1983!
I was so excited I immediately added them to my Christmas list! Again, no, not for Sweetpea, for me. They, too, will go up on the shelf in the closet and remain in the boxes. In searching for these pics, I also found out that 2007 was the 25th anniversary of Rubik's Cube and G.I. Joe as well. Geez, I feel old.
While at the toy store, I also came upon a display of Pound Puppies. That's right, THE Pound Puppies! Full size!
Though they mostly looked exactly like I remember them, it appears they have added some new puppies to their repertoire. And perhaps they are a "coming back" toy rather than a "stayed around" one, but I was nonetheless thrilled to see them. I immediately snatched one off the shelf and turned to Sweetpea saying, in a voice that I'm sure the majority of the people in the six aisles to my right and the 8 aisles to my left could hear, "I think we should get one of THESE!" She looked at me with that look of a child who believes their parent has suddenly lost their mind, looked at the Pound Puppy, and said "Oh look, a puppy." She gave it a courtesy pet, then promptly walked away. I was amused and devastated all at the same time. As I put the puppy back on the shelf, I caught a few of the looks from the other parents nearest to me. No, it's not what you think. They were not looking at me as if I were completely insane. Instead, every single one of them was grinning with that knowing smile that says "We agree, we want one too, but our kids weren't impressed either."
It really doesn't end here. I am a little disappointed with the comeback of Strawberry Shortcake, because they look nothing like they used to. Though the smell seems to be the same. I don't like the new Cabbage Patch dolls AT ALL. They are too big, and though they may look similar to their original form, I can tell the difference. Yuck. Although, I think I saw somewhere that their anniversary is also coming up, and they are celebrating with the release of an original version of the doll. Then again, maybe that is something I just concocted.
In addition, I was so stoked to find at Wal-Mart the Cooties game on sale! My nephew is getting one for Christmas. All in all, the trip to the toy store was actually pretty fun, though I left there feeling REALLY old. It's bound to get to you when the toys you played with as a kid are announcing their 25th anniversaries. I did go home and promptly call my mom to tell her of the discoveries I had made, and the new additions to my Christmas list. She, of course, found the whole thing amazingly funny. In between snorts of laughter, she tried to answer my questions as to whether she had saved any of these toys from when I was a kid. Ultimately we decided that a trip to the attic will be necessary on our next trip home. I'm actually excited, despite the distinct possibility of finding spiders up there (I'm an arachnophobe). Mom promised to set off a bug bomb up there a couple days before we get there, and I will hold her to it.
Of course, my husband made fun of my little walk down memory lane, and rolled his eyes every time I mentioned adding one of these things to my Christmas list. But you should have seen him check out the electric race tracks with that little gleam in his eye. And when he thought I wasn't looking, I saw him pick up and peruse a game of Operation....