I braved the cold today and took all 3 kids to Wal-Mart with me. I normally avoid this at all costs, but we needed stuff and I had coupons that were going to expire, so I went for it. First I got lucky and found a cart with the 2 seats for the girls, so I could put Archer in the buggy (or shopping cart, I know, depending on where you live, buggy has a whole different meaning).
Then the first wonder happened. I was standing in the back of the make-up section, trying not to block half the aisle, and this woman walks up to me. As a mom, I am used to this. Old ladies come up and ooh and ahh over the baby and "such pretty little girls". This woman, however, was not one of those ladies. She came up and asked me, with a rather haughy tone, if all three of "those kids" were mine. I said "yes ma'am they are" and...here's the kicker...she said "and you're pregnant again, good lord". Here's where the Wonder comes in. I actually said "no ma'am, we're not having anymore" instead of what I really wanted to say, and you can use your imaginations on that one.
The second Wonder is one of a different sort. Over the last few years I have experienced this a few times. At first I found it rather awkward, but now, I just go with it.
As I was walking towards the cleaning section, this woman came up behind me and asked me to stop. She said she had been trying to catch me since I left the medicine section. I thought maybe she was going to say something about what had just happened. Instead, she pulled out 3 gold dollars. She apologized that they weren't the new shiny ones. Then she gave me the gold dollars and told me, and the kids, that they were for their piggy bank, and that they needed to save their money. She then told me how she had grown up in the depression and how her mother had lost everything by putting her money in the bank. I have heard this story almost every time this has happened. Other times it was just that whoever it was grew up poor. They know the value of saving, and they want to teach to the younger generation.
I think it is great when knowledge and traditions are passed down. I, and my children especially, are very grateful for this generosity. These people, out of nowhere, for no reason other than their own will, have trusted their hard earned money into the hands of children. This puts into the hearts of the parents the will to teach their children well, in hopes of doing the deed justice. That's my theory anyway. And that's what I plan to do with it. In the past, I have let the kids get candy or whatever with their gift. But from this day forward, those dollars (or quarters, or whatever) will go straight into a piggy bank, so when it gets full the kids can decide what to do with it (with a little help from mom and dad).