If you misbehave, will you still get Christmas presents?

Dec 2008

Usually my kids know exactly what they want for Christmas. This year they’re getting older and we’re having a tough time trying to decide what to get them! I know that when my kids were smaller, they would do just about anything to make sure Santa brought them everything on their list, instead of the dreaded coal or toilet paper they thought they would get if they misbehaved.

Would we have been able to follow through with giving the kids only coal? Nah! Maybe they’re spoiled but our kids have petty much always received what they wanted under the tree. It turns out ours aren’t the only ones! 

In a recent survey, Walmart asked over 1,000 kids ages 3-11 and their parents about how far they were willing to go, to get what they want! The results are surprising. 68% of kids said they would clean their rooms every day for a year while only 23% said they would eat spinach daily for a year! Here are a few more interesting results from Walmart’s Talking Holiday Toys Survey.


Naughty or nice? Kids who’ve had a few time outs this year are in luck. While the majority of kids think their behavior impacts the amount of holiday toys they get, 78 percent of parents plan to buy the same amount of toys for their children regardless of how naughty or nice they’ve been throughout the year.

Wish list toys – parents and kids disagree: The top toy gifts parents want to give their kids this Christmas are “toys that teach;” however, the top toys on kids’ wish lists are dolls and action figures.

Those sneaky kids: Parents are in the dark when it comes to knowing whether or not their kids find their gifts ahead of ChristmasNearly twice as many kids as their parents say they found their gifts before the big morning (23 percent vs. 14 percent). The top hiding place? The closet.

Nagging works.  Asked about the most persuasive technique their child uses to get the toy he/she wants for Christmas, the top response for parents is their child asking them repeatedly for the gift. Similarly, when kids are asked what they think is the best way to ensure that they get the toy they want for Christmas, the most popular response was to keep telling Mom or Dad over and over and over again.  

I conducted my own little Facebook poll to see what my readers had to say. Like our family, many of you said that you still buy your kids the same amount of gifts, whether they’re good or bad, even though 62% of kids think thee opposite is true! It doesn’t surprise me that my mom was the only one who said she would buy me fewer gifts if I misbehaved… I DID get coal one year, I still have it!

fb poll

Some readers even admitted to sneaking a peak at gifts when you were a kid but only a few of you have actually caught your own children sneaking a peak! What do you think your kid would dot to make sure they got what was on their list?

This is a partnered conversation. Thoughts and opinions are all mine.
About the Author

Henrietta Newman is a self-loving empty-nester into smudging, nature, yoga, fitness, healthy living, hunting, camping, hiking, tech, video games, gadgets, recipes, reviews and more.
With a love for the outdoors and visiting local attractions in and around NW PA and Lake Erie, you never know what you'll find in my nest! Subscribe to A Hen's Nest so you don't miss the fun!



  1. 1

    Sigh….my kids will get exactly the same things whether they are naughty or nice. I just can’t NOT get them any less – it’s in my nature to spoil them.

  2. 2

    I could have gotten the kids to eat spinach??? ;)

    I used to try and find out what my gifts were. I’m quite sure my little ones would never do the same (hah!). ;)

    Actually two are too old to care much about gift lists these days. Not sure if i like that or not. They’re both out of the house and both have said they don’t want anything, lol. Bet they like what they’re getting anyway. :D

  3. 3

    I’m definitely in the majority, they get the same presents regardless of behavior. Budget is our biggest factor in what goes under the tree.

  4. 4

    My kids always get what they ask for. Gav just found out the truth so I hope he is still as excited! We lock ours in the attic!

  5. 6

    Our kids just tell us what they want for Christmas and that’s it.I don’t like being constantly reminded and they know it. They also know they’d get what they want.

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