Experiences Not Toys

Today I am taking Eden (our oldest) on her first trip to New York City. She wants to see The Lion King. During our short visit, we will also take a carriage ride in Central Park, visit several toy stores (no purchases), and enjoy several meals together – including one at a famous Peanut Butter and Jelly restaurant.
She is four.
Because she is four, I know some folks think she is too young for such a trip. I understand the sentiment, but two things have impacted this type of decision thus far in my parenting philosophy.
First – In recent years, two pastor friends of mine died unexpectedly and suddenly. Both have children and their time to influence their children and make lasting memories with their children was tragically cut short. I don’t know how long the Lord will have me live on this earth, thus I don’t want to wait on things I desire to experience with my kids.
Second – A pastor I served under once told me, “If you are going to splurge on your kids splurge on experiences, not items, because experiences make memories and ‘stuff’ is quickly forgotten.”
Most experiences don’t need to be as expensive as The Lion King tickets. According to her father’s day card, her best memories include: donut shop dates, Chuck E. Cheese dates, reading books, playing Barbies, and throwing rocks in the creek. But someone is going to take her to her first Broadway show, and I want it to be me.