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Old 11-24-2012, 08:48 AM   #11
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Do they know not to do it? I would make them donate (or you return the ones they opened) if they know better. I would allow them to have other gifts, but not the ones they opened.
This is where I an getting hung up. They DO know better but I feel like they are only 4 ya know. DH suggested we just put them in different boxes and maybe they will not really remember but I don't know if that would work.

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Old 11-24-2012, 08:49 AM   #12
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Re: My kids opened their presents

LOL my son did this around the same age

He is almost 8 now, and recently diagnosed w/ADHD. I didn't punish him for the gift-opening, just told him that it wasn't okay and put the rest of the gifts away. Not seeing gifts under the tree made him sad enough, and punishments have generally been ineffective with him.

I love the suggestion of putting the gifts up high where the boys can see them but not play with them.

Another idea is to just totally take down all the Christmas stuff and tell them that since they opened their gifts Christmas celebration at your house is over, and they will get their presents on Christmas Day. Then I would put it all away and put the gifts away until Christmas Day.

I must be soft-hearted, I think it would be *very* hard to look at all those presents for a month and not be curious...at least they peeked rather than completely tear open the wrapping (that's what my son did).
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:49 AM   #13
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IMHO, it is unrealistic to expect a 4 year old to have the impulse control to leave wrapped presents within their reach alone. I would have a chat with them about spoiling their own surprise on Christmas morning and leave it at that.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:53 AM   #14
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Re: My kids opened their presents

If they only opened the corners and kept it from you, they know better. I would take the gifts away. If they know the consequence is not getting the item they won't do it again. If they know the can be sneaky and disobey, still getting what they want, then why should they listen to/respect you?
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:56 AM   #15
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IMHO, it is unrealistic to expect a 4 year old to have the impulse control to leave wrapped presents within their reach alone. I would have a chat with them about spoiling their own surprise on Christmas morning and leave it at that.
This. There is no way my 4 year old would make it through 2 days much less an entire month. We always put gifts out after they go to bed Christmas Eve.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:57 AM   #16
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If they only opened the corners and kept it from you, they know better. I would take the gifts away. If they know the consequence is not getting the item they won't do it again. If they know the can be sneaky and disobey, still getting what they want, then why should they listen to/respect you?
This it's why I am torn... I totally agree with you as well
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:57 AM   #17
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Re: My kids opened their presents

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IMHO, it is unrealistic to expect a 4 year old to have the impulse control to leave wrapped presents within their reach alone. I would have a chat with them about spoiling their own surprise on Christmas morning and leave it at that.
I like this idea. I wouldn't bother re-wrapping or anything, either. It's exciting to see gifts, they were probably just burning w/curiosity to know what was inside. I remember feeling like that when I was little.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:59 AM   #18
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Re: My kids opened their presents

FWIW, we put gifts under the tree and my kids don't touch them. And they are younger, but they know to listen and they'll be rewarded with those gifts later on. I would definitely wait until Christmas Eve next year since this has already been a problem, but that doesn't mean they won't look for them. What would bother me the most is that they didn't blatantly open the gifts in full view, they only opened corners and were sneaky about it.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:00 AM   #19
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Re: My kids opened their presents

that sucks... my sister is a snooper, and when she was about that age, she opened a gift, and she didnt get it.... shes always been a snooper though, found santa presents in the garage when we were older, lol.

its hard, because its all the presents. if they opened one or two, i'd say make the kids take them to a toy drop somewhere and donate them. but all of them makes a difference. makes more work for you, and i dont know about your budget, but if i had to give away all the gifts, i wouldnt have money to buy more


eta-i think its entirely possible for a 4yo to make it. i never unwrapped a gift. ds is 5 this year, and hes never done it. i think it depends on the kid though. my ex-h was never able to wait until christmas, lol
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:00 AM   #20
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LOL my son did this around the same age

He is almost 8 now, and recently diagnosed w/ADHD. I didn't punish him for the gift-opening, just told him that it wasn't okay and put the rest of the gifts away. Not seeing gifts under the tree made him sad enough, and punishments have generally been ineffective with him.

I love the suggestion of putting the gifts up high where the boys can see them but not play with them.

Another idea is to just totally take down all the Christmas stuff and tell them that since they opened their gifts Christmas celebration at your house is over, and they will get their presents on Christmas Day. Then I would put it all away and put the gifts away until Christmas Day.

I must be soft-hearted, I think it would be *very* hard to look at all those presents for a month and not be curious...at least they peeked rather than completely tear open the wrapping (that's what my son did).
I would just put the gifts away until Christmas. What they did was wrong but I don't see punishing 4yos to any large degree over it. Put all the presents away somewhere and explain that you cannot trust them not to snoop. It's a good opportunity for a discussion on trust.

My older kids are 2yo and 5yo. They've both been known to try opening gifts so all presents stay at my office until Christmas Eve. I was a bad kid, LOL, and would snoop for gifts or receipts, so I remove all evidence!
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