"All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth."

Little Una fox has lost one of her front teeth and the other is a little shaky so this may be the song of her festive season.  However, Una is now 6 and the sentiment of the song is becoming a little lost on her.  “All” Una wants for Christmas is whatever the brightest ad playing on “M-M-M-M,  M-M-M-M More Milkshake” this week.  This includes; various Barbies and Disney Princess Dolls, Sky High Tinkerbell, oh and a DS! 

In an attempt to teach Una, and her brother Louis, that Christmas is not all about consuming, we have begun our countdown to the big day with what I hope becomes a new tradition.  We are going to clear out some toys and books that the little foxes don’t use.  

Now, I really don’t need to tell you my ulterior motive for this do I?  I mean, I’m sure I am not the only parent that started out with a beautifully organised toy basket that she assumed was big enough for all her little angel’s toys.  And a plan to keep their toys limited to their bedrooms and maybe just one of the downstairs rooms in the house.  Only to find herself 6 years later drowning under a sea of plastic crap, and some very nicely designed toys too.  I need to make room for the new toys that Father Christmas will be supplying.

Invariably my favourite toys are not their favourite toys and what with things given by members of the family, or with specific emotional significance there are a limited number of toys I can just bin without a second thought.  In fact I never bin, unless something is broken,  the toys will be heading to the charity shop.  This year we are taking part in the Rotary Club’s Shoebox Scheme.  Each of my little foxes, has a shoebox supplied by the Rotary Club for them to fill with toys for a child of their age in Eastern Europe who might not otherwise receive a Christmas gift.  The size of the toy is obviously limited by the size of the box and there are a few other limitations like no sweeties and no “warlike” toys.  

I like this scheme as the children also get to decorate their boxes and have made a Christmas card for the child they are sending the box to.  Louis has been made a card based on his new obsession, fireworks and Una first drew a Christmas tree then went for the firework theme too. we've included a picture of each of the little foxes in their card and a little note.  The children also have a small budget to buy a couple of things to go into the box too.  

I’ve also spotted that Argos are running a toy exchange this festive season.  You can take your unwanted toys into your local Argos and they will pass them on to Barnardo’s to sell and raise funds.  So, get into an Argos by 27th November and in return for your donation you’ll receive a £5 Argos voucher to spend on toy purchases over £35 in-store.

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