On this special day, the school cafeteria is converted into a shopping mall where the PTA sells Dollar Store merchandise for a 200% profit. Every student gets 20 minutes to spend an envelope full of money that their parents give them on presents for specific family members... unless, of course, their parents don't give them any money, in which case, they spend their 20 minutes trying to talk their classmates into sharing the wealth.
When I saw that Camber was among the throngs of moochers, I gave her $8 and told her to buy gifts for me, Tim, and Tim's parents. Once my daughter disappeared into the sea of pint-sized shoppers, I turned my attention to the two kindergartners whom I was assigned to assist.
Jason didn't need any help from me. He made really good selections all on his own. His purchases included a $3 flying angel porcelain figurine with sparkly wings for his mom, a tube of hot pink lipstick for his Dad, and a pair of plaid-checked oven mitts imprinted with the phrase "World's Best Cook" for his baby sister.
After Jason cashed out, I told him to sit against the cafeteria wall and wait for his classmates to finish up. When I went to check on him five minutes later, he was wearing the oven mitts...and the lipstick.
By the time I got to Kylie, she was mostly done. Her shopping bag was overflowing with high-quality loot including 3 Phillies pennants, a "bleeding eye" bouncy ball, and a small arsenal of personalized office supplies.
"That's a lot of stuff," I observed when the bag became so heavy that Kylie began dragging it across the floor. "I wish that I had that many presents."
Kylie looked at me like I was missing some marbles.
"You can, silly," she said as she grabbed a ruler off of the table that read "Grandma keeps me in line!" and put it in her bag.
That's when I realized that all of Kylie's gifts were stolen.
I was in the midst of trying to console the hysterical kindergartner when another kindergartner approached, carrying a $7 purple lava lamp.
"You and grandma and Dad can all share this," Camber said. "But we'll keep it in my room, so you don't fight over it."
Ahhhhh, money well spent.
In case you're wondering, Camber's last dollar was spent on a gift for Tim's Dad. It's a magnet that says, appropriately, #1 Uncle.