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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saturday Swag-urday: Destination X-mas

Before I get all engrossed in this post, let me announce the winner of the spooky rodents Zhu Zhu Pet: It's Keyona from The New Norm.

Go on over and congratulate her! And, before you get all bent outta shape, it wasn't the sucking up she did in her comment(okay maybe that helped just a little bit), she won fair and square by being picked by my unautomated, manual picking machine known commonly as #2.

Did you know that there are currently only 89 days left until Christmas?!

I know, you don't stat freakin' out until the countdown hits the single digit mark.

But, this year, if you listen to me like a good little blog follower, you don't have to be that person. You know the one, rushing through Toys R Us, clothes disheveled, sweaty brow, with the cart full of kids while you scream across the store to your husband in mommy-daddy code about which gifts he should (or shouldn't) be sneaky up to the register to buy.

Seriously, you see how things turned out for Kate, don't be her.

And here is the next installment of PBD's Ultimate Bomb Diggity Gift Giving Guide of 2009 to help you in your quest to not "pull a Kate" (for lack of a better expression).

This is me thinking outside the box people, so bare with me, I like my box and I'm not used to getting out of it and seeing the world, and, quite frankly, neither are my need-a-leash-to-stop-the-madness children.

We have only just recently begun to increase our time outta the box.

We still haven't fully mastered #3 in public (you know, without the cage and chains we keep him in at home), but we're getting better.

But, for those events that aren't particularly appropriate for monkeys (or children who act like them), we are able to abandon him, I mean leave him with Hubby, for longer periods. Now that he's fully independent of the boob, he's unlikely to blow out a diaper, and he can communicate without screaming (although, he keeps this option available for emergencies, which generally includes anything that has to do with food), Hubby is more confident in his child handling skills which allows me the opportunity to take the older, slightly more civilized members of the fam on excursions.

With this in mind, I've decided to give the gift of fun for Christmas this year.

Gifting someone fun is an exciting idea because:

a) It's easy. When you give the gift of fun, which can come in the form of tickets to The Backyardigans (which I gave #2 last year), or Disney on Ice (which I'm considering for this year) all you need to do is load up the World Wide Web, click on over to Ticketmaster...

and boom! There you have it, ridiculously overpriced tickets to fun!

Sent, via USPS, or available for pick up at Will Call. Can't get much easier than that.

b) It's special. My kids really look forward to their special event days. Possibly that's because they are so starved for attention that they crave this one on one time like Whitney Houston craves crack. Or, used to, because (despite what you may have seen on the Oprah show), apparently she's clean.

When I invest in the gift of fun, I usually select an event that is specific to the interests of that particular child. Then I make a huge production outta taking just that one child to his designed-with-him-in-mind event (you know, since it could be at least 8 to 12 months before I address him by name or make eye contact with him again, not because I don't want to, just for lack of time) and the others get left behind to eat veggies, have baths (which is like punishment around here), clean their rooms, and go to bed early.

This strategy serves two purposes as well (quite the multitasker aren't I?). One, it allows me to save money, because these effing shows are e-x-p-e-n-s-i-v-e. You would think I was taking them to see someone amazing like Taylor Swift, who is not nearly as awesome as Beyonce (did I get that straight, Kanye?), but still, she's like a top shelf performer, and, apparently, the friggin' Backyardigans are right up there with her.

And, two it makes the gift of fun that much more awesome. Excluding the perpetual kidtourage (kid-entourage) from the event is a gift in itself. This is especially true for #1 because I'm sure having #2 as a brother is akin to having a Siamese, I mean conjoined (that's the correct word, right?) twin, as he spends all of his time up his a**.

Let the kid breathe already!

c) It's a selfish gift, which makes it even more awesome. If you play your cards right you too can benefit from the gift of fun. You can select something, like Walking with Dinosaurs or a live production of The Lion King, that you may find enjoyable also. Or, you can purposefully choose something in a relatively dark venue that you have no interest in experiencing (like a trip to the Planetarium for a presentation about the crap hole that is space) so that you can nap during it. Either way, both of you have a blast.

So, take a few minutes and explore some of the following options for giving the gift of fun.

And, remember, fun doesn't have to break the bank, all it has to do is be, um, you know, fun!

PBD Approved List of Things Kids Think are Fun.

1. Movie Tickets (my dudes LOVE this gift and so do I b/c it's almost cheap enough to be considered affordable; almost). You can plan to see any of these upcoming possible blockbusters set to release during or after the holidays. Even though A Christmas Carol drops November 6th, I'm sure they will keep this one around through the holiday season. Avatar comes out a week before Christmas, so it'll still be playing after Santa does his thing. Christmas Day you can plan for the second installment of Alvin and the Chipmunks (give you something to get your mind off all the cash you blew on the toy they already effing broke?!). And then, in 2010 you can look forward to Alice in Wonderland (although it may not be for kids with the likes of Tim Burton and Mr. Fine himself, Johnny Depp, involved). Feel free to sleep through Avatar, but I wouldn't miss A Christmas Carol, Jim Carey is too funny!

2. Museum/Zoo/Aquarium Tickets. You all know how much we love fun, educational venues around here. Every city has them, and if you don't live near a city, well, then maybe you just shouldn't pick this one.

3. The farm. This is just for those people who don't live anywhere near a city. However, I guess that means you already live on or very near a farm which would make this one very anticlimactic. Whatever. Go for the movie tickets, every place is kinda close to a movie theater, right? Please tell me I'm right?!

4. A theatrical production. I'm using the term theatrical loosely here to include anything performed on a stage that includes music, dancing, and/or plushy-mascoty-type characters (think Disney on Ice, the Wiggles, and other "performing artists" that are made to be almost repugnant to adults yet annoyingly addictive to children).

5. A theme park. Unless the theme is Disney or chocolate (remember my trip to Hershey Park? I can still smell the sweet goodness.), I try to avoid these places at all costs. They're filled to brimming with sneaky teenagers, they require more walking in one day than I'm generally comfortable with, and #1 tempts the barf gods every time he mounts a ride. But, kids seem to get all giddy with excitement when presented with an opportunity to experience one of these happy places, so they make the list (for you, not for me).

In summary: Give the gift of fun this Christmas, it'll make you a hero!


Jennifer said...

I gave my nephew tickets to Sesame Street live one year. I think that is a great gift.

Orange Juice said...

you know I've thought of that before but I'm always worried i'll end up wasting money bcuz my son will go nuts & won't sit still etc...

Keyona said...

So excited I won! Thanks for that and your great gift ideas! :o)

thatgirlblogs said...

my sister gave us all tix to disneyland last christmas. we've given those as gifts in the past as well.

forces us to take a vacation, oh darn!

parentingBYdummies said...

Now, Disneyland is a place I love! Back in my California days I used to go there constantly. I was a chicken about big roller coasters even then so it was just my speed. Wish I could take the dudes there, but this group on an airplane for 5 hours is just not happening.

lynne b. [my life in blog] said...

great gift ideas. i have 3 nieces & 5 nephews & im always struggling with what to get them. its my job as coolest aunt 2 get the coolest gifts, ya know! :)

Giving away two copies of the movie Extract starring Jason Bateman and Ben Affleck. Contest ends 4/2/10.
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