Battling The "Gimmies" When Shopping

I read in a parenting magazine that a helpful thing to cure "the gimmies" is to carry a small notebook in your bag and when you are going through a store, whether it's a toy store, book store or grocery store, and your child starts nagging for a certain item, instead of buying that item when you don't really want to or arguing with the child, you ask them to tell you what they want. You tell them that you can't buy it for them now, but you'll write it down and when a special occasion arrives, you'll have a reference sheet to look back to and get some ideas for gifts. 

This is sort of a "wish list" that I carry around for each of my children and record the things that they really want when I'm out shopping. Some things are just a fleeting interest and they forget about them as time goes by, so I take these things off the list.

The nice part about this list, besides the fact that it works, it lets the child know that you're really listening to them. That you're not just saying, "No, not now" or "That's too expensive". It lets the child know that their feelings are being validated when you write the item on the list. It lets children start to get the idea for delayed gratification. They may not be able to get what they want now, but they have a good feeling that they will see that object in the future.