Saturday, January 10, 2009

I Want...

My kids have never been particularly greedy. I never had to worry much about mile-long lists for Santa or unreasonable requests in the grocery store. I could, most of the time, have them with me when we shopped for a birthday present for another child - they would usually have good suggestions without insisting on a toy for themselves. And as they've become older and fashion choices have become more important to them, I find that it is usually me insisting we go shopping (so I'm not doing laundry every day), rather than them asking for more clothes.

And yet, there has been a subtle shift in their desires. There is something about preteens that makes it seem as though their hands are always out for cash. Part of it is the growing independence - I'm no longer taking them out for ice cream on a sunny afternoon; they prefer to go with their buddies (but still want me to pay for the cone). And part of it is a change in routine (I no longer pack a lunch box, but hand over weekly lunch money instead). Either way, though, I can't escape the feeling that the hand-outs they ask for are going to be increasingly big: today it is movie money; tomorrow they'll want the car keys and college tuition.

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