When the kids act like little stinkers, it is easy to say "no" to whatever they want. And when money is super tight I may not want to say "no," but our hands are tied: the answer is "no" whether a heart string is pulled or not. But sometimes they are good, and sometimes we do have a couple of dimes to rub together.
So I am in search of wisdom: how to walk that middle-class line, where you could afford this or that, but are just not sure how often to say yes and when to draw the line.
But you know where this is headed, don't you? If I decide to teach my kids about how to be a good steward of money (theirs and dad's), I might have to evaluate MY OWN spending wish list long before I take a gander at my kids'.
Authenticity. Oh ick. I have to live out something difficult in order to teach them something. I can't exactly tell them "no" to that train table they have drooled over for half their lives and then leaf through that Pottery Barn catalog and order up a new couch.
Here is what I am thinking the steps are to get this whole notion moving.
- Think through what kind of consumers I want them to grow up to be
- Think through what kind of consumer I am modeling
- Compare that to God's standard
- Modify modify modify. (Me.)
- Read up on the "wiser-older's" ideas
- Come up with a way to show the kids what Daddy and Mommy think about when we spend money
- Involve them in it - so opportunities to talk about money come up in new ways
- Let the kids earn money/receive an allowance so they begin to learn to manage their money in light of everything new they are absorbing.
Well, I have the child labor/dime-a-chore part going on already, but I see I have some work ahead of me. I am off to start on my list. If you have any thoughts or resources, pass them on!