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Deciding how much to spend on a child's toys...

(9 Posts)
lljkk Wed 30-Mar-05 20:01:55

I have recurring dilemnas when DS sees a toy (usually at a friend's house) that he'd really like, and I know that he really would play with it a lot. Do I buy it? I hate always saying "Sorry, but that's too expensive", especially when really we could spare the money for the much coveted toy. I think DS has fewer "nice" toys than many of the other children we see, and we have about as much money as the parents. But I can't decide if we "should" just buy him nice toys to keep up (he and his friends spend a lot of time talking about what toys are in their houses!), or because he'd enjoy them very much.

Both DH & are frugal by nature & don't buy many toys for ourselves, either!! Should we make DS wait for his birthday (8 months away)? Even at his birthday I wouldn't usually think to spend as much as the toy today cost (in excess of £250, I think). But we could afford it if we wanted to.

If we buy this toy for him, now, should we buy as nice a toy for DD at the same time? I never know how to figure out how much is "enough" and how much is "too much" to spend on toys for the children, esp. for toys inbetween birthdays. Is there a way to figure that one out?

purplelumpy Wed 30-Mar-05 20:04:21

I think it depends on the toy in question - if it's say something for the garden or educational then yes i'd get it - but if it's say a game console then i'd wait till birthday / xmas i class these as luxury presents.

kama Wed 30-Mar-05 20:06:58

Message withdrawn

WestCountryLass Wed 30-Mar-05 22:03:51

How old is your son?

My son is 3.5 and has no idea whether something costs 50p or £50 so I buy him things hen he wants/needs them so long as we can afford it and do sometimes use the said item as a reward.

starlover Wed 30-Mar-05 23:05:08

I personally would wait until his birthday.
And yes, I would get something for your dd as well.
£250 IS an awful lot of money to spend on one toy... and when your kids have an idea of what things cost (if they don't already) then I would imagine your DD would be a bit upset that you spent that much on him and nothing on her

lljkk Thu 31-Mar-05 08:26:12

DS is 5yo. It's a big train set, Playmobil, includes at least the top 2 sets on this page , plus extra track, a level crossing ....he likes them because they're big, because he can almost imagine riding on it, I suppose! I think I have decided he won't get enough play out of it before he's bored with it, am trying to persuade him of that, now, LOL.

But thinking about it I have decided to get him a nice pirate ship (for a mere £20-£30) because he's been asking for that for ages & I think he will play with it for years to come.

Metrobaby Thu 31-Mar-05 08:41:58

I don't spend anywhere near the £250 for dd's xmas and birthday presents . I do buy her occassional toys but only when completing her star chart. She then gets to choose a toy which is between £5 -£20. She is 4yrs. As she has lots of toys already, much of which she only plays with occassionally, I don't want to inundate her with even more toys.

clary Thu 31-Mar-05 08:50:36

wow lljkk that's a lot of money imho.
I guess it depends on yr financial circs/how much room in yr house etc.
I have to say that we buy toys as a rule only at b/day and christmas (se have 2 summer and one april b/day so that spreads otu quite well).
would buy something small (colouring book, lego model for £5) as a special treat for a good achievement (eg if dd ever stops sucking her thumb!!!) and get books fairly often too.
I think a 5yo can have some idea of the value of things. If I were buying my 5yo a £250 toy I would want there to be a really good reason.
The pirate ship sounds like a better option!

Bozza Thu 31-Mar-05 08:52:34

Couldn't you have bought part of the set and then if he liked it added to it for his birthday? We did this with DS - bought the playmobil aeroplane for Christmas and then added the airport for his birthday - still only £80 altogether mind you.

Also am wary about this toys that they love at other people's houses. Often does not hold the same appeal at home.

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