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Forgot Christmas/birthday gifts for my daughter's siblings

 
 
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 09:28 am
My daughter, Cassidy, (age 12) has two half siblings on her moms side. A sister, Maxine (approx. age 13) and a brother, Nate (approx. age 7). Her two siblings lived with their mom and Nate’s dad (Maxine has a different dad who isn’t around). Meanwhile I have had full custody of a Cassidy since she was 6 and I would take her to visit them periodically. Pretty much just for holidays and birthdays as we lived quite far away. We would always pick out a present for them on these occasions

last year the kids mom passed away. Her husband ran off after that and no one has heard from him. So both Maxine and Nate were taken into the foster system.

Recently Cassidy realized that we had forgotten Nates birthday (it was in January) as well as getting both her siblings Christmas gifts entirely and Maxines birthday is coming up next week. I’m usually good at remembering, but me, my wife, and Cassidy had a big move in December so everything was very hectic and it must have slipped our minds.

So now I’m trying to think of presents to give them. Cassidy and I both are having a hard time coming up with anything. Obviously they are in not so great situations right now and probably feel bad that we forgot about them. Does anyone have any ideas on gifts we can get them. I’m not sure what would be the most appropriate in this situation or what they are allowed to have. I'm not that experienced with the foster system. Our budget is around $100 each.
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Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 482 • Replies: 15
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Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:02 am
@maverick139,
Why not give them a gift card so they can get what they want/need? It's difficult to know as kids age so quickly - what they need, what they want, what they like. You can take them out for lunch and gift them a Visa card that they can use anywhere (as opposed to HMV or ToysrUs).

Probably contact with them will be very much appreciated. I can't even imagine how those poor kids are doing - their mom dying and then being abandoned. Invite them over, take them out, phone calls... will mean more than a gift, surely.
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:18 am
@Mame,
Gift cards just always seems so impersonal to me, but you're right its better than getting them something they don't want or need.

Unfortunately after the move we live in so far away that visiting often and inviting them over isn't possible. My daughter does have all their contact info and vice versa, but in all honesty they don't contact each other much. They didn't actually talk that much before either. I guess I can try to figure out some ways to gently encourage my daughter to keep in touch more.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:24 am
@maverick139,
You know, my son says the same thing about gift cards (ha) but we both agree that when you don't see someone regularly (like my grandchildren/his nieces), how do you know what size they are, what colour they like, what toys/etc they're into - they change so quickly! A lovely note in a card to explain you want them to treat themselves offsets the impersonality of it all.

Maybe zoom calls? Notes or cards once in a while? Just keeping in touch may mean more than you know. I just really feel for those poor kids. Are they together, do you know? That may help.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:24 am
@maverick139,
Maybe your daughter could feel them out. I'm not familiar with the foster care system or how the kids are getting along with their foster parents. I would try to see if there is a lack somewhere, clothing, school supplies, etc where you could make a difference. Another option would be to plan a day trip and just take them shopping.
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:34 am
@Mame,
I’ll see about the zoom calls and take my daughter out shopping for some cards and stationary.

They’re not together. Her sister is in a group home and her brother is in a foster family.
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neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:37 am
@maverick139,
You could choose give them the gift to foster them instead of being with strangers. That would be a life time of gifts.
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:39 am
@engineer,
Well right now my daughter feels very nervous about the whole situation and is afraid to call them. I can try calling them myself, but I’m pretty much a stranger to them.

Unfortunately we cannot take them shopping as we live too far away.
0 Replies
 
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 10:51 am
@neptuneblue,
With everything we have going on right now that would just be far too much for us to take on.
0 Replies
 
jcboy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 12:23 pm
@neptuneblue,
neptuneblue wrote:

You could choose give them the gift to foster them instead of being with strangers. That would be a life time of gifts.


If it were my daughter and her siblings I would do everything I could to foster them. They need a home and family more than material possessions.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 12:38 pm
@jcboy,
Yes, but if his daughter feels nervous just to call, imagine how she'd feel about fostering!

I thought of that, but not everyone is set up to do this and they really don't know these kids. These kids are not related to him, but half are to his daughter. This is a single (perhaps) dad with a child. They'd need 2 more bedrooms. They live in another town. We don't know the dad's work situation or anything.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 01:17 pm
@jcboy,
It could be more than material..hard to know their personal situation.

Two things .... Can you contact the foster parents and get their opinion? Otherwise I agree a gift card like a visa but you could include something small that is personal...maybe like a picture of your daughter in a frame or something with their name on it that they could use....
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 02:26 pm
Just to understand the situation correctly, the woman who died, that is your daughter's mother?
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 03:03 pm
@engineer,
Yes
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 03:15 pm
@maverick139,
How is your daughter handling that? All this with her siblings must be mixed up with how she feels about losing her mother.
maverick139
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Mar, 2022 03:33 pm
@engineer,
Well, she does have a therapist that she sees. She did private sessions for a couple months after and would see her once a week. We also had a couple family counseling sessions. During one of them she did share with us one of the things that troubled her the most was that she felt bad about not feeling bad about her mom. They had a lot of issues in the past and that’s why I have full custody of her.

Then when she was doing good her therapist suggested decreasing appointments. Now she checks in with her therapist about once a month. My wife and I also try to make sure she feels comfortable talking to us too and she’s seemed like a pretty normal happy kid overall nowadays. The exception being about how earlier today she felt bad about forgetting about her siblings, but she did seem pretty happy laughing with her friends when I picked her of from school just a little while ago.
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