Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Gift of Guilt

Here's one for you Boy Scouts. Find the square knots. Find the overhand knot.

This one's simple enough to make with your preschoolers, or, as has happened at our house several times, to make FOR a preschooler. It seems that this was the "gift of choice" from teachers to class when the boys were in preschool and we had several different versions ... hard candies, candy canes and once a series of chocolate kisses hot-glued to a poster board background. I don't recommend this option.

Quite a few years ago in a fit of holiday goodwill, I conspired with my mother to make a similar candy chain for my younger brother. It would be slipped in his Christmas stocking and I would be "helping Santa". I was probably 7 and Andrew, just over 2. I chose my very favorite candy for the project (butterscotch kisses!) and felt the spirit of Christmas in my very being as I knotted the candies together in a golden chain.

On Christmas morning, Andrew's eyes danced as he held the rope of candies, and I urged him to "Taste one! They're good!"

He popped one into his mouth and immediately choked on it. Hard candy discs and 2-year-olds aren't really the wisest combination. Of course he was fine 10 seconds later, but the candy chain was taken away "for later", and of course, HE never saw it again. It was offered to me; after all, butterscotch kisses were my favorite candies, but I couldn't bring myself to eat them.

There was enough guilt to carry me right on into Lent...

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