"I am ashamed of what I spend on Sint gifts"

12 Apr 2021Updated: 4 hours ago | 52 people are reading

In our popular section Opgebiecht you can share your secret anonymously. This week: a reader who pulls the wallet around Sinterklaas days ...

© Offered by De Telegraaf

"It started so well. We had set a budget for Sinterklaas gifts. Fifty euros per child, we think that's reasonable - although that is quite a lot of money. We would therefore keep ourselves tidy on the fifty euros, despite the fact that our eldest son (4) has many wishes and has been fanatically ticking almost everything since last month in the piles of toy folders that flop on the mat every day.

Excitedly, I started compiling a 'shopping list' this week. After all, it's better to have everything in house well before December 5, in case you have to trade something. It was very easy for the youngest of two and a half: he does nothing but play with his train, so I had some accessories in mind for this. They had to be Thomas de Trein's, because that fits with the stuff he has already received from grandparents. Booklet with it and Klaas is ready!

As said, the oldest had a lot of notes on his vocals: except for, he wanted a Minion as big as daddy peels me bananas and takes me to school ' (eeeh…) also a racing car with remote control and a dino.

I am a busy, working mother, so I prefer saving myself the hassle of a time-consuming gift hunt. That is why I happily started ordering from an online department store. What turned out to be? For 50 euros the toddler you really do not buy that much. You are shocked when you see Thomas the Train junk! If I were to keep to the budget, the man had to make do with two small wooden carriages and a railroad crossing with a bell.

But I also wanted - in view of some intellectual challenge - a Barbapapa book and a puzzle for him. Pling! You have 4 items in your shopping cart, do you want to pay or continue shopping? Continue shopping, well over budget now. A racing car for my oldest was easily found. And wouldn't it be nice to buy a Playmobil dragon castle for him?

Clicking through the separate Playmobil shop of the online department store, the cheapest version of it turned out to cost more than 89 euros. 89 euros! There was even one of 189 euros! Even if I opted for the cheapest variant, I would be well over 200 euros. For some Sinterklaas gifts!

So in the end it was, next to the racing car with remote control, a fire-breathing Playmobil dragon of around 35 euros. Plus a book about astronomy, because he wants to know everything about the moon and planets.

I hardly dared to look at the amount of all the items collected in my online shopping basket. More than 150 euros, was the verdict. And then I actually cheated, because earlier in the year I had already collected booklets, sticker sheets, craft supplies and a dino egg. And for the sake of convenience, I do not include those costs. And I know that both grandfathers and grandmothers from both sides are bringing some presents, so on Sinterklaas evening an irresponsible pile of presents awaits us.

Yesterday the postman already brought a huge box - part 2 will follow later this week. When a child was so happy I started to unpack. What great things! That dragon is really fantastic. But immediately the shame overwhelmed me. Why so much and so expensive? Do I fall into the trap of working mothers (I work four days myself), who buy off their guilt with expensive presents in shiny wrapping paper? My children get so much, while there are poor children whose parents cannot afford a simple gift.

I remember how I recently read in the newspaper that a Syrian lady would be in a Lebanese refugee camp die because she could not afford to have a tumor removed. It would have to contribute 50 euros to that operation. Exactly the amount that I have gone over budget. Weird actually. I know what to do: what are the giro numbers of Stichting Sinterklaas Bestaat and Stichting Vluchteling again? ”