This post was underwritten by BMO Harris Bank, which offers a matching $25 on a new savings account opened for your child through their Helpful Steps for Parents program. Learn more at bmoharris.com/parents.
I breathe in Sunday mornings.
Windows open, children pajamaed, and husband cooking.
Jason and I sip coffee amidst the chaos that is three kids playing. Our eyes meet, “Is it time? Do we do it now? Should we pay our kids?”
Sunday is allowance payout day and has been for a year now.
It started with the Halloween Costume Debacle of 2009.
That year Kayi fell in love with a “Snow Princess” costume. It was intricate, sweet and expensive.
She and Jason had a “serious talk” about the pretty, spendy costume and decided that she could have it- if she wore it for two years. He was proud, she was thrilled, and all was well in our world.
But last Fall, Kayli saw things differently. Snow Princess was so 2009 and she wanted something so first grade.
I will admit to wavering, but Jason stayed strong.
He knew that we’d be setting a terrible precedent and example about how we treat money if we gave in.
He also knew that this was a perfect chance to teach Kayli about choices and priorities and being responsible with money.
Friends taught us about “Share Save Spend” and we loved the model.
We started allowances Share Save Spend style with just enough time for Kayli to use her Save and Spend money to buy the coveted witch costume with her own money.
On the table was, of course, the previous year’s costume if she decided that she’d rather use her money in a different way.
But she did end up buying the witch costume, and was so very proud of herself. And I’ll admit that we were so very proud of her, too.
Although imperfect, for now that’s how allowances work at our house.
And as for Sunday mornings? They’re golden. We eat waffles, talk football, clean, and dole out money. And coffee.