MVES students buy presents at Santa Shop

ALABASTER – Students at Meadow View Elementary School learned about gift giving at the school’s annual Santa Shop, which took place from Monday, Dec. 4 through Thursday, Dec. 7. MVES PTO President Erika Zoebelein said Santa Shop gave students in kindergarten through the third grade the chance to guy Christmas presents for loved ones while also using basic math and budgeting skills.

“It’s a whole week where the kids get to come shop,” Zoebelein said. “They’re experiencing shopping and budgeting without their parents.”

According to Zoebelein, most items at Santa Shop were five dollars or less, and volunteers were onsite to help kids figure out what gifts to buy within their price range.

“We try to accommodate everyone,” Zoebelein said. “One child came in with two dollars and we were able to help him get something for four people.”

Grandparent volunteer Carol Landrum said Santa Shop also taught the kids about putting others first.

“We try to push for them to buy things for others first and for themselves last,” Landrum said.

“They’re very generous with their families and friends,” Zoebelein added.

Kindergartener Lilly Ezelle said she bought earmuffs, a hat, a necklace, a toy truck, glasses and slime, among other things, for members of her family.

“I care about them,” Lilly said. “Mason’s my cousin. He’s 12, and I got him a notebook because he draws lots of stuff.”

Kindergartener Timy’lon Kirkland said he was especially excited about buying presents for his siblings and his mom.

“I got toys and a bow for my mom. She likes bows. It’s an Alabama one, because she’s an Alabama fan,” Timy’lon said.

Kindergartener Lorelei Hutchinson said she also stuffed her bag with presents for her family, and bought stuffed animals for her siblings.

“I have a brother and two sisters,” Lorelei said. “My mom is about to have another baby boy. We’re going to name the new baby Marcus.”

Unfortunately, Lorelei said she wasn’t able to get anything for her new baby brother because he is due after Christmas.

While the kids had a good time, Zoebelein said she and the other volunteers were amused by their enthusiasm for gift giving.

“The kids get excited. It’s a fun environment,” Zoebelein said. “We get a kick out of the kids because they’re proud of what they’re doing.”