19 December, 2012

Puzzling Question: Should I or Shouldn't I?

OPINION
I started a new part-time job (about 25h a week) after Thanksgiving and it will end in late January. I make $15 an hour and have been charging that much for the past 5 years. I haven't had a full-time job since 2008. Besides this part-time job, I work for other families a night or morning here and there, earning an extra $60-$200 a month. I take care of three children ages 6, 4 and a newborn.

I thought about giving them a small present but by watching them I noticed they play with the exact same toys every day and every new present they got over the past three weeks in the mail, they played with it as soon as they got it, then forgot all about it the following day. I feel as if I'd be throwing my money away by giving them a present they won't play with, or worse: I will find pieces of the toy (I was thinking a memory game or puzzle) scattered across their playroom, like the toys all over the place this morning. Will I look bad if I don't give them anything? My boss is oblivious to my personal life and lack of money but she did mention that she would have a gift for me. - Anonymous

10 comments:

workingmom said...

The length of time you will have your job is so short . . . you're basically a temp. As a parent I would not be offended that you did not give my child(ren) a Xmas gift.

However, if you really WANTED to give a gift, and just know that you don't want it to be yet another toy that is cast aside, think "experiences".

Take the children to a puppet show theater production, or museum they wouldn't ordinarily see/go to. If you can have time with just the two older children, take them to a pottery class where they can dig into the clay - or some other type of craft which requires "hands on" involvement. Or bring that kind of activity TO them; a beading kit, so that they can make their own necklace or bracelet - which they will always have to remember the experience.

As a parent, I appreciate your motivation, and would just encourage you to get creative!

Megan said...

I agree with the previous poster, since you are in a temporary position, I don't feel like it is necessary for you to get your charges a gift. However, I personally like being able to hand the children something small, and they always are really excited that I thought of them.

Do they like to read? Books make great gifts, and are something they can always have around. I personally buy books for my charges (although I work with them every day) that I like, so we can read them before nap time each day.

Moniker said...

Books! Books are cheap and make a great gift. Do you have an Ollie's?

Anonymous said...

OP here... thanks, yes they love books and I actually bought one that was really good but sadly when I received over the mail it was a library copy and I sent it back.
I was worried the mom would be offended if I didn't give anything. The idea of puppet show is good but although the mom is nice, everything has to pass by her first, and since the kids are sick, they won't be able to get out of the house.

ericsmom said...

Your leaving in a month. I wouldn't really worry. I like the idea of a book or maybe a childrens music CD they can sing and dance too? Try and keep it under 15 dollars.

Maybe, some arts and crafts you can do with them. Especially if they are sick and you are stuck in the house. Projects to do. I went to A.C. Moore and was able to get some cute arts and crafts projects. They have cute crafts for a dollar each.

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

I do not think you are expected to give a Christmas present to the little one(s) since you just started. However if you prefer to give the kiddos a nice gift, how about a gift certificate to "Build a Bear" or something similar?

N is for Nanny said...

I would probably buy books for the kids or bring over a plate of cookies for the family with a nice card or buy a fun art kit/project to do.

I think I would be more likely to do craft/cookies at Christmas and give each of the kids a book at the end of my position, to say goodbye. Of course, if the position is ending because they are moving or something (i.e., don't need more stuff) I would only give them consumable until after their move, at which point I might mail something small.

oh well said...

I think that if you can afford it, giving them a small present would be nice. Maybe a personalized Christmas ornament for each kid?

Anonymous said...

Op is back! Ok, they had another nanny yesterday night there (I work from 10-5) and the kids didn't mention any present from her! I was so glad because that wouldn't put pressure on me.

I didn't give them anything but I'll sure be replying to the survey....

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

Isn't it nice when you don't feel obligated to give someone a gift? The purpose of the holidays is to minimize stress...not create it!