Why I Refused To Search (Let Alone Pay) For The 'It' Christmas Toy This Year

Sick and tired of the crooks reselling kids toys of the season at inflated prices, Leslie Kennedy thinks it's about time we all said no to the insanity.

With just five shopping days left until the big day, your newsfeed is likely filled with pleas from parents looking for Hatchimals, the ‘It’ toy of 2016. Parent groups on Facebook are filled with both sightings and increasingly desperate requests for them, with everyone trying to make sure their child has one to open this holiday season.

Last year it was the Paw Patroller, the year before that, Elsa. Every holiday there is a prized toy that everyone NEEDS to get their children. It's become such a commodity that some people are now snatching them up, then selling them on Kijiji for blackmail style prices that desperate parents are willing to pay. It’s extortion of the highest order, over a toy—preying on a parents desire to fulfill their child’s biggest holiday wish.

Kudos to parents who go out of their way to try to get the perfect present. But we need to stop even considering paying insane prices to people looking to make a buck off our love for our kids. We need to take a stand against this increasingly common and horrible practice.

We would be better off finding another amazing gift and explaining to our kids that sometimes Santa runs out of Hatchimals, that we will find the present at a later date when it’s not the busiest time of the year for toy purchase. The gift can come at birthday time instead.

The people who sell these prized toys at an insane price are Scrooges. If we pay their crazy prices, we are saying that their disgusting behaviour is worth putting up with to get the ‘It’ toy. Would we tell our children that's what we chose to do? Give into a bully preying on our holiday spirit at gift-giving time? Because that’s what these people are. They’re bullies. “You want what I have. You can have it, for 10x the price. If you love your kid, that’s what you’ll pay.”

We can give our kids the perfect holiday morning, even without the ‘It’ toy. We don’t need to sell our souls to the devil to make that happen. Some of us make sure we are first in line at the Disney store on toy delivery day to get our hands on the first Elsa doll, while others post that the local store has 10 Hatchimals left on the shelf. Going above and beyond to give our kids the perfect holiday is something we all try to do.

Personally, I’ve never even tried to hunt down the ‘It’ toy. The stress is too darn much for this mom and there are enough awesome toys out there that my kids would be more than happy to have. If they want the toy of the season that badly, they can wait until I don’t have to be up at 7.30 am in line at a mall, praying I can get my hands on one of the elusive toys recently spotted there. 

I’ve heard from those who managed to nab a Hatchimal, that it’s not even worth the fuss. By all accounts, it’s kind of annoying and the novelty wears off within hours, not days. I have seen that review time and time again and yet, I have no less than six posts in my newsfeed today alone looking for it. 

There is more to the holiday than getting the PERFECT gift. Yes, kids love presents, but I’d rather my child be grateful for what they do get than have a whole holiday ruined by what they didn’t. And that doesn’t mean I’d kill myself to get the one and only thing they insist on having, the thing that will make or break their holiday. It means that if it’s too hard to get, they will get another great gift and appreciate that someone bought them a present with care and love. Because if we’re all willing to do that, these people who sell a $70 toy for hundreds and hundreds of dollars will have no buyers. These people are the Grinches who are trying to steal Christmas.

It might be cheesy to say, but that’s not what the holidays are about. It’s not supposed to be about scoring the ‘It’ toy. If a holiday is destroyed by not getting a Hatchimal, then maybe that’s precisely the reason you shouldn’t bust your butt to get one. 

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