It absolutely squeezed my heart when he insisted I have the bands, they were from his first packet. I had to wear them then and there in the ASDA car park.
On our trip to Yorkshire, Boy One spent an inordinate amount of time browsing and deciding in a one of those not-very-precious-rocks-and-crystals shops. I lost track of the number of times he lapped the tiny store’s display tables and racks of shiny stones on leather thongs with a £5 crumpled in his fist.
Through the window, I saw him fingering a flowery gift box. “Perhaps it’s for his grandmother,” fingers crossed. But no. Over ice cream in Halifax’s Piece Hall he presented me with the trinket box and it’s contents – two stones. He only kept a one of his treasures for himself.
Then there was the badly painted scarab beetle from the British Museum and the small leaping dolphin from some other gift-shop-disguised-as-route-back-to-the-car. Handed over with absolute solemnity, they insist I keep the offerings close.
Their jewellery choices are, for me, the very definition of mixed feelings. I am so proud that they think of me when they’re near a till with their few coins in their pockets. It would be so much better if they went for this Berganza antique jewellery.
However their taste is the absolute pits. They pick glittery things with the paste stones barely glued down, they like earrings so heavy with stuff Pat Butcher would baulk. Colour is good, but they opt for so much in one place.
I found a copy of the Argos catalogue that Boy Two had gone through with a red pen. The things he’d earmarked for me included a ‘mum’ pendent spelt out in two shades of gold and fake stones, a sovereign ring, Hello Kitty themed sets and charms in the shape of phones, shoes, bags and teddy bears.
How can I persuade them to keep their money to spend on sweeties and their own treasures? Or, at the very least have them improve their choices… ?
UPDATE: Reading this back, I realise it makes me sound like an ungrateful cow, but you try going to a meeting in earrings that lacerate your neck and make your lobes go green or try to work with a desk so cluttered with love tokens there’s barely room for the mouse.
UPDATE SOME TIME LATER: Their taste has improved. This year Boy Two gave me some delicious chocolate for Christmas and Boy One a copy of Paradise Lost!