Monday, April 27, 2009

Money Monday 5th Edition

This weeks edition is about kids again.
I don't know about yours... but mine lose stuff ALL THE TIME! Especially my 15 year old.
Cell phones, shoes, clothing, watches, Ipods, calculators, you name it.. if it has value... it gets misplaced for a very long time.
All that stuff costs money.
Show of hands... how many of you run right out and buy a replacement whateveritis, so Junior will be happy? Come on... no ones looking... how many of you?
Can I just say this?
Let Junior pay for the replacement. Please?
I know... some of you are saying... "But Junior is only 5... he can't possibly pay for anything."
Oh... yes he can...
There are THOUSANDS of ways to make money.
You need three basic things...
1. Need.
2. Ambition
3. Time.
Most kids think they NEED an Ipod to survive. Fine. The first one may have been on you... but the others should be on them... always.
A child learns about money and how to respect it faster when it comes out of their own pocket.
It is SO easy for them to spend your money... they run up to the toy aisle, or the computer game aisle or the DS aisle and pick out two or three things they NEED you to buy them.
But make a child earn and use their own money to purchase something and suddenly... they become miserly... weighing options, checking the label and price tag and mentally doing
the math in their heads.
The first time you explain what tax is on an item... they are ready to hold up signs in Washington to repeal all taxation. Ahhh youth... it is so wasted on the young... don't you agree?
So... what can Junior do at the age of 5-12 to earn money?
1.Collect bottles and cans. My kids scour the trash cans and bleachers for bottles and cans after every baseball game. I arm them with gloves, and trash picker upper... and they will probably earn $300 by June, and save our environment a little bit. It's like a treasure hunt for my 10 year old. He knows those cans are money. And no... I don't worry that my kids look like they are scavengers looking for used things. It's recycling, it's humanitarian, and we don't have the time to be uppity and worry about what the Jones' are thinking. ~~
2. Car Wash business... go door to door to the neighbors and ask to wash cars.
3. Pulling weeds or cutting grass of neighbors... okay maybe not for the kids under 10, but the little ones can offer to water gardens or plants for people.
4. Older kids 12-17 can take referee classes and umpire classes and precide at local games and make great money!
5. Snack Bars... although... ya gotta find a Snack Shack Czar less controlling than me... but if the kid is chosen... there is about 100 bucks a week in it for the kid!
6. Offer to tutor kids in their specialty.
7. Walk dogs
8. Wash dogs
9. Have a kid stuff yard sale... and include homemade pastries/lemonade for the customers to buy.
10. I know I would love it if a group of great kids came over and offered to
clear out my side yards and dispose of the debris for me. I would gladly pay $200 for it.
Help your children see how many jobs/days/tasks it will take to reach and achieve their goals for repurchasing the lost item.
Teaching kids to work for what they want reaps rewards for the child down the road.
One reward is not having fear of good, honest hard work.
They will always feel like they can take care of themselves... no matter what happens.
It's a gift you are giving your child that is bigger and better than any gift in a box you could ever give.
When you let them earn what they want... they are getting so much more than the item.
They are getting self esteem, pride, accomplishment, goal setting skills, ownership, and best of all, self sufficiency.
I have never met a person that earned their own things as a child, that wasn't a success in their adult lives. The people that were handed things without work, have an air of entitlement that is a real detriment to their lives, and to their families lives.
William bought his own replacement phone this week, and he is going to pay the $5.00 per month insurance fee I made him get on it. His new phone is exactly what he wanted... and he is treating it very differently than he did the other phones I purchased in the past.
He is working very part time as an umpire at our local little league, and it will cover the fee, and help him to purchase the coveted Itunes credits he so desperately needs, but the music can only be purchased after I have heard a snippet and see that it isn't 'explicit' in nature.
So... in short (okay long... who am I kidding...) all kids from 5 on up can learn the value of money and it's uses. It will only harbor good, ethical, respectful use of it in the future.
Roots and wings.
That's our job as parents... right?
Roots... and wings.


  1. I made my daughter buy herself a new prepaid phone after she got hers taken...she should never have had it out at school!!! Trust me, she takes care of the one she got.

  2. You are amazing. So down to earth and real. Your kids are going to grow up into great adults. My daughter was independent from a young age, worked part-time from 14 on and is great with money now. I think that best of all she worked for Italians and Greeks and they had a great work ethic and loved her like family. I totally agree with you on this subject. Another great chapter for a BOOK! Yeah if I say it enough it will happen Saundra.

  3. This whole post rings my "it's so true" bell.

    My middle son had his wallet stolen a week ago. He called asking if I could "reimburse" the 35 bucks that was in it, pay for replacing his license, and pay for the replacement student ID he HAD to have.

    Had he been mugged, I would have helped....but it was his own laziness that got the wallet stolen (he left it in a "cubby" out in the open at a college rec center-duh) so I told him he was out of luck, have a great day, bye honey.

    My boys have always "worked" whether it is for me (really horrid crappy jobs) but mostly for neighbors, dog sitting, vacation plant watering etc. When it is THEIR money they are much more selective about what they NEED RIGHT NOW :)

  4. awesome mom you are! though i have no kids yet i was totally raised like this... and i swear now being married and we supporting ourselves... this has totally helped in the long run!

  5. My first job was making chocolate brownies for the truckers at my dad's work; he would leave them in the lounge and they'd sell out in one day! I got up to making two batches a day, three times a week. It was awesome having my own money for make-up and clothes. Nowadays, there are probably "food rules" for stuff like that, but any enterprising young person would surely find a way! I set up an Ebay store for my teenager . . . she has yet to use it, but it's ready when she is.

  6. I agree. My 6 year old doesn't have an i-pod or anything of that nature, but she does not "lose" stuff either.She knows I will not replace stuff,lol. We are in the middle of cleaning out her room of her "out grown" items. She is making three piles, "for her cousins" (they are younger), for freecycle,
    "to sell".We also put an item or two that we can't part with in a chest for her. ;-)
    She can use a third of the money raised in selling her items however (within reason) she sees fit, the other third is saved for her education, the other gets put away towards special outings or items she has requested.

  7. LOve that-Roots and true.
    What great ideas...seriously!!! You need to write a book on practical advice for moms-
    Just your weekly reminder about that....

  8. You are the bomb! My kids can work for money in addition to their allowance. When they get their allowance, they put 10% in savings and 10% in a separate bag for church then they're allowed to do whatever they want with their money. I have to bite my tongue when sometimes they spend the full amount on candy BUT I also get to say, "you should have saved your dollars if you wanted to buy that. Do better next time."

  9. Awesome post and I agree 100%!!!!!! You really need to write a book. Common sense and great humor - you have what it takes woman!

  10. I live in a community where kid's get cell phones at 10 and younger. Drives my son nuts. He's an old man (12) and still doesn't have one. Out of necessity my son has to buy his own electronic gadgets (those things are expensive!) But he's always proud of the things he has and definitely takes better care of the stuff he pays for.

    Great post Saundra!


Comment! Comments! I just loooooove comments!
If you have a blog, I will come visit and comment on yours!!! I promise! No Anonymous comments though... if you can't play nice.. you can't play at all.