Friday, July 2, 2010

Decisions, Decisions: Teaching Children to Live Within a Budget

I heard this cute little poem many years ago that I use for buying my children gifts:

Something they want
Something they need
Something to wear
Something to read

Lately I've let the kiddos choose the "wear" gift themselves within a certain budget.  I recently took one of my kiddos shopping for their wear gift and the child wanted over three times the budgeted amount.  She decided to spend almost the same amount of her own money, but still couldn't afford all the items she loved.  Being one of the younger kids, she gets mostly hand-me-downs - so I can understand the desire for new things.  And her love for clothes and shoes continues to grow.  I could have a real clothes horse on my hands ;)  

It was so tempting to spend a little more, but she(and many people nowadays) needs to learn to live within their budgets.  She needs to learn to choose what's most important.  If she doesn't have to learn it at this level, when will the lesson be learned?  At one point, she was getting disappointed with the shopping trip because she was focusing on the things she couldn't buy, instead of the cool things she was adding to her wardrobe. It's important as mothers that we teach our children to be grateful for what they have and what they can afford.  The lesson comes easier for some children than others, but it needs to be taught consistently regardless.  

By the time she got home, she was excited to show her treasures to the rest of the family. Hopefully she's one step closer to understanding!


monica. said...

She needs to go yard selling with me and learn how to make things just a little cuter on the sewing machine :)

Raejean said...

Yard selling and sewing would both be good skills to teach her!


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