This is a Facebook post that I wrote a few years ago. It is still true, if not more true today.
As I look around our room full of toys and think about how much my boys actually play with them, it brings something from my childhood to mind. Kids didn't have rooms for toys back then. We had toy boxes. Grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins didn't buy us toys at Christmas or birthdays most times. We just spent time together. Grandparents usually gave us lame clothes and a few dollars to buy something we liked. If they did buy gifts, they were very special; like when my grandpa bought me my first camera. I'm sure it was used and it was old but I didn't care. It was thoughtful. This is also the grandpa that made a point to stop by our house every day after work just to say "hi". I'm glad he did that because he died when I was 10. Yet, I still have many fond memories of him in that short time. My grandmas would play school with me, colour or write poetry, take me for walks, let me help in their gardens or attend my softball or ringette games. A treat at our grandparents' houses were a mint from the mint jar or a chiclet. 30 years ago people seemed to have a lot more time and a little less stuff. So when we got "stuff" it was rare and special. Thinking to that and looking at our room full of toys brought me to this :
Grandparents, in a time where people have so many "things" but not a lot of time, why not give your grandkids what is rare? Honestly, those toys you spend your hard earned money on often are forgotten. However, your time, the memories that you could create by playing with them or telling them stories of your childhood while making mud pies would be treasured in their hearts forever. You don't need to buy them a lot of candy or spoil them with "stuff" every time you see them. These days, even the doctors and dentists are giving them something. Did you know that they even get candy and toys with their Valentine's now? It's not as special anymore. Kids take "stuff" for granted. Mine do anyway. They don't take time together for granted though. Less stuff more time. Would you agree, parents?