Birthday Gifts and Inappropriate Toys - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 07-05-2005, 12:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Last year for my son's birthday he recieved many plastic toys that took batteries and make lots of noise. Of course he was excited about the toys so they all had to be opened. I couldn't be ungrateful so I thanked everyone of course. However 90% of the gifts ended up at goodwill shortly therafter because they just weren't healthy toys, IMO.

Thinking about Cort's next birthday and wondering what do you all do about this? I cannot speak to all the family members one on one about this and I don't know how I would even bring it up without sounding like a brat. Is there some sort of Waldorf information pamphlet I could mail to everyone that explains the toy issue?
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#2 of 6 Old 07-05-2005, 09:51 AM
 
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In my experience, even if you talk to people, they'll still give your kids what they want to give them. Sometimes my ILs or parents ask now, but most often not. We have been able to slightly reduce the sheer quantity. But basically we just cull every once in a while and take a bunch of stuff to Goodwill. Sorry not to have more positive advice!

Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#3 of 6 Old 07-05-2005, 09:59 AM
 
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I've just written a letter to my family on this very topic. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out, but haven't sent it out yet (I want to include some ideas for them, so they're not completely lost).

I'm still struggling with the birthday parties thing . . . I had a thread on this subject in the childhood section. Some of those kids seem much more 'socially conscious' than my own, so I'm not sure any of those ideas will work in my family, but they may work for yours.
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#4 of 6 Old 07-06-2005, 05:44 PM
 
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Do you send out birthday invitations in the mail? Maybe for next year you could write a note at the bottom saying something like arts & crafts toys requested, wooden toys especially welcome. Or you could say dont bring a gift just come & celebrate the day.
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#5 of 6 Old 07-21-2005, 07:05 PM
 
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Thankfully most of our family is fairly good at choosing appropriate gifts, asking us before hand, or buying cotton clothes, because they know they are a safe bet! There really ought to be a Waldorfy brochure available on this subject since it is such a trouble for so many Waldorfy/natural parents. I believe in a Mothering back issue there was a sample tactful letter that one could write to relatives. Another excellent way to give them the message that is a bit less direct, but serves to indicate your tastes to them is to give them toy catalogues from natural/waldorfy toy catalogues .

HTH!
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#6 of 6 Old 07-26-2005, 01:21 PM
 
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Unfortunately...the good will trips may continue...at least for us.

Dh and I have both spoken to our parents only (we just have't gone there with anyone else). My folks have been really receptive and actually call for ideas...his on the other hand...they do try but his parent's try last time was a wooden train that still made the train noise???? I guess at least it wasn't plastic...but my MIL has a special place in her heart for things tha make noise...she says she just loves them...even though DS (4) tells her we like kid powered toys and and kid made noises.

At least Dh could take the noise maker out of this train

I have to say though....I feel so ungrateful even posting this...it is a very conflicting thing for us as on the one hand I do want my children to have natural, imaginative toys...but on the other a gift is a gift and I am grateful that people think of my children, regardless of how they choose to do it...it is the love that comes with it that counts.
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