The first one came from Soldier last fall, and they have been collecting them ever since.
A month ago, they placed their order. The girls got what they ordered, but when we opened Little Mister's package, it was not a Beandog at all, but a little coin purse.
He cried. I almost cried too.
Of all my children, Mister is the most detail oriented and the least patient with things not going as planned. I can relate. It's a weakness of mine that I've struggled hard to overcome. I saw this as an opportunity for him to grow, but I also knew that to leave it unfixed would communicate a cold unfeeling attitude that would push him away from me. While I don't want to spoil him or make him think he's entitled, I do want to show him that I care about the things he cares about.
He and I had a long talk about choosing to be cheerful when things go wrong. He listened, and I didn't hear another word of complaint.
I called customer service at goHastings, and as expected, got the runaround. Nobody (older than seven) cares about a $6 toy.
We decided to order another one from a different seller. I offered to add another one, called Chili Bean, onto the order of Black Bean to reward his patience and good attitude for waiting.
When they came, there was a Black Bean and a TIGER BEAN. No Chili.
He did not cry, but the look in his eyes broke my heart.
To me, this was a $6 toy. To him, it was a future pet. A child.
The look reminded me of the way I felt when we were due to bring Abi home and she was very nearly sent to another family instead.
I called customer service with Mom's Toy Attic. To my surprise, they graciously apologized, and offered to send a Chili Bean to us with no extra charge. Tiger we could keep.
Mister gave Tiger to Curly, and to his delight, Chili came in a few days.
I wrote a nice review on their seller's page.
One of my privileges as a mom is to care that the $6 toy that came in the mail is red instead of yellow. I can tell Little Mister that I love him over and over, but helping him learn to be patient when mistakes are made, but still caring to find the one he chose, made a deeper impression.
One of the times I felt the most loved by my dad was when I lost a toy, a bean bag frog that I loved, on a trip. He had fallen out of the car beside the road on a quick stop, and I was devastated. My dad drove back along the road late at night and actually found the frog. I remember thinking, even as a young child, that he could so easily have told me to quit crying; it was just a silly toy. But he didn't.
Small? Yes. Huge? Yes. :)