A Washington mother's sly trick to stop her children from asking her to buy them toys ahead of Christmas has gone viral.
Last month, Kristina Watts, a self-described entrepreneur from Belfair, took to Facebook to share that her camera roll was full of photos of her daughter's wish list items — but for good reason.
"Once again my camera roll is FULL of pictures of Emerson with every single thing she wants for Christmas," Watts wrote. "Why...because it’s the most amazing parenting hack ever and has stopped MANY meltdowns! If you aren’t using this hack...listen up friends."
The mother went on to describe how her children, like many their age, want every single toy they come across at a store.
"Obviously I would love to have sweet, well mannered, non-greedy, chill kids, that don’t ask for all the things...but I don’t," Watts lamented. "So drop your judgement Karen, and stop reading if you have kids like that. Now...if you have kids like mine...that want the shiny amazing things that fill Target, the grocery store, Office Depot, the gas station, and pretty much everywhere you go this time of year, this is for you."
To avoid having to answer to her daughter's demands, Watts came up with a clever idea.
"Take a picture," she told her family and friends. "It’s that simple. Pause for a second, comment on the thing they’re pointing out, and say, 'Let’s take a picture with it and send it to Santa so he knows you want it!' Note: you can send it to Santa, grandma, TeeTee Stephanie or whoever it is you can pawn it off on. Totally up to you and can be different every time."
And, naturally, every time Watts pulls the stunt, her innocent girl falls for it, she said.
"Magically, Emmie smiles, says cheese, asks to see the picture, then PUTS THE TOY DOWN AND WALKS AWAY," Watts proudly wrote. "It’s magical. No tears. No tantrums (by either of us). And she forgets about all of them within minutes."
The mother's ingenious strategy has since gone viral. As of Monday morning, it has received over 15,000 comments.
"I think that's a great idea," one person wrote in response. "I always got my kids what they want and they have never been greedy or asked for hundreds of stuff......yea that's right Karen......mine are older now so the whole Santa thing is off the table.....I miss that terribly. Great tip lovely!!"
"This is awesome!" another wrote. "Will try it next time. problem is the kid in me wants the toy too!"
Other parents shared their own tips on getting children to stop begging for toys.
"I mean, call me Karen, but you have to TEACH kids how to not be greedy, how to work for what they want, and how to effectively process their feelings so that they don’t need to throw tantrums," one mother wrote. "They aren’t just born that way. So, I don’t just have children like that, I raised children like that. You too can raise children like that, just talk to your kids about their feelings. It’s possible, I promise."