Monday, July 2, 2012

Tales from the Trenches: Teaching financial responsibility to an 8 year old.

My daughter is a spender.  She gets it from her father.  Hubs is a spender.  He has said that if he was in charge of the finances, we would not have the savings that we have.

You know, I believe him.

When cleaning K-'s room (for and with her), I found that while she had the bills in the money jar, I found change everywhere.  After we were done cleaning and all the change had been found (I think), we dumped the jar out, K- counted all of it and found that she had $30.00.   I told her that I would allow her to spend $5.00, but that we were going to go to the bank to open an account and that she would put her $25.00 in there. 

We went to the bank, she went to the counter with me and I asked her to tell the gentleman what she wanted to do.  "May I please open a bank account?"  :insert grin of bank teller:  "Of course!"  She told him about the money that she had and that $10.00 came from Grandpa when he won $20.00 on the scratch-off's.  She said that he took his $10.00 and bought more lottery tickets.  :insert laughing from the bank teller:  We talked about the ability to direct deposit her allowance into her account just like Dad gets his pay check direct deposited.  "Absolutely!  What jobs do you do?"  "Well, I do a lot of work."  :insert Mom shaking head:  "I take out the garbage!"  "You do!"  "Yup!"  "Well, that doesn't sound like fun."  "Oh, it is!  I get to take the cans to the street!"  He looked at me and laughed.  "Just wait until she sees how much fun it is to haul a city can in the snow!"  He laughed some more.  We got the account opened, her money deposited and I now have her allowance deposit scheduled for deposit each "payday."  That would be Friday.  ;)  I can cancel the deposit of the week if the jobs weren't done.  I think that after K- sees the dollars add up in her account, she'll know that working for a few bucks isn't such a bad thing.  I did tell her that no work or if we have to pester her = no pay or not as much pay.  I told her that her dad and I wouldn't get paid if our bosses had to beg us, too.

Later, we went to the store to find a treasure for K- to buy with her money.  We found that a local craft store had some Webkinz, but sadly, people had stolen the codes from many of them.  That made her mad when she realized that someone stole the codes.  She decided that she wanted to go to Toys R Us to check out their goods.  You and I both know that $5.00 hardly purchases anything in the Land o' the Giraffe, but it took K- a hard lesson to learn that.  She left teary, saying that everything was just "too spendy."  We had a discussion before we went in that she could only spend what she had and that I would not add money to hers for her to purchase something out of her price range.  She did do one bit of pleading about, "You can buy me this one and give me extra for that one."  It wasn't obnoxious and I didn't cave.  (Hubs is the caver.)  Turns out that we tried a store down the road from TRU that she was fairly determined that she didn't want to go to, but then she found them-- a stash of beautifully kept Webkinz, all codes intact AND! for $3.25 each.  She even had extra money to purchase fake hair braids stuck onto bobbie pins.  (I make them sound glamorous, don't I?)  You should have seen the look on the face of the cashier when she pulled out her change purse and it was all in change.  She would have counted it, but in the interest of NOT having the people behind us throw things at us, I counted it out for her.  You know what?  She still had change remaining.  Her frown did turn upside down and she decided that store wasn't such a bad thing at all. 

Later, I sat her down and told her that if I went into the store to buy something, only had a certain amount of cash in my hand, the store wouldn't let me get more just because I wanted it.  (We'll skip credit cards and lines of credit for now.)  I told her that sometimes you can't buy what you want because you don't have the money or it is too expensive.  I also told her that it can pay to shop around.  (The three stores we went to were on the same road and in about a 1 mile strip.)  We didn't tour the county for a deal, but we went within a reasonable distance. 

I'm trying to teach her to save and to be responsible with money.  If you have any ideas, do share!

Smiles in my day:
-  Listening to my people giggling and laughing about some misadventures that happened in their good day of fishing, despite the 92 degree heat, battery dying for the boat motor, the loss and regain of an oar, the near loss of K-'s new fishing pole, the hassock falling out of the truck and gaining speed as it rolled down the boat ramp.  It had been, er, used (lightly and not soiled), so I have to admit that I'd rather have it roll out of my truck than to tip over in it.  That part had them laughing the hardest!
-  We had a busy day and the time went by quickly. 
-  Despite the moderate drought we are suffering through, I'm keeping the plants going.  I do have a flower basket that is in the medical care unit of the backyard as the intense heat finally got to it in a big way, but everything else seems to be holding on.  I would love a break from watering.  That and the rain barrel needs a filling.  We have squash blossoms, collards growing like crazy, tomatoes happily hanging, peppers peppering, ground cherries ripening, corn moving upwards, green beans sprawling onwards and potatoes holding their own.  The butterfly bushes are blooming, despite the weather abuse that they've suffered from this year.  Eeek!

Have a great day!

1 comment:

ChupieandJ'smama (Janeen) said...

Good Lessons! We opened accounts for the boys when they were babies. But a couple of times a year we gather up their money and take them to make a deposit. They know they aren't allowed to spend their money unless it's something agreed upon ahead of time and they've saved for it. Or if Grandma gives them money for good grades. J is my spender. Money burns a hole in his pocket. If he has a nickle to spend he will find a way to spend it. M is different. He'll save until he gets enough to buy what he really wants. J spent his report card money in 10 minutes at the Lego store. M wanted to spend his and was kind of sad that he didn't have enough to buy what he really wanted so instead of just buying to buy, he saved it.
Glad your plants are surviving this drought. I have one that semi died but it's starting to show signs of life again. We just keep watering and hoping for some rain.
Due to the drought, we'll have to postpone the fireworks this year too. We're afraid that one spark might take out the wetlands (which are barely wet anymore) behind our house.