This just got me thinking. Having experiences and time together with each other is a a far more valuable gift. Especially as grandparents/aunts/uncles age. You can HAVE that present that grandma gave you OR you can have the memory of that weekend spent with grandma. The latter is more prized.
My kids (at least my older ones) have got it. For One's 16th birthday, Miley Cyrus tickets (don't judge me!) She got to see her "Queen," and I got pictures of her crying as she came out. For Two's 15th birthday-tickets to Wicked. (It was completely amazing, FYI.) She will always remember getting to do that with me. And I will always remember getting to see her face as that curtain parted. For One's upcoming birthday, she has requested a weekend just she, her sister, her bestie and I (and maybe The Bestie...since she happens to be One's besties mom...but I have to clear it with her) at the beach. Experiences. Not things.
I didn't have a lot of either growing up. We weren't rich by any stretch, and my family didn't really "do" much together either. BUT...my favorite gift that I ever received? A doll my grandmother MADE for me. It was made from panty-hose, and stuffing and to be honest at the time I hated it. I wanted a baby like everyone else had. But the truth was we most likely couldn't afford that. Now, as I look back....I know how badly they wanted to give me a baby doll. And how long and hard my grandmother must have worked to make that baby for me. And it is a treasure.
This year? I'm hoping to take my kids, and my mom back to the city my mom was born in. She went with her sister (and met her other sisters) and some of their kids but I (nor my sister and her kids) were able to go. I want to make that happen this year. I'd love my sister to be able to go with us, but I want to go either way. We also plan to "slide the city," which is a 1000 ft water slide down the streets of our state's capital! In addition, One has requested to attend a music festival (hippie-child that she is) and I'm hoping to make that happen too.
That will be a lot of experiences for them and I can't wait!