Showing posts with label child training. Show all posts
Showing posts with label child training. Show all posts

Monday, December 30, 2013

{A Better 2014} Teaching My Kids About Money.

I was lucky enough to be raised by extremely thrifty parents. I'm pretty sure I never said thank you to them for that.

Oh, it didn't feel fortunate at the time, when I was the last one of my friends to get Kaepa shoes and real Jams, and my dad was dropping me off at Moore Middle School in a 1973 {paid for, immaculate, with only a handful of miles on it} 42-foot-long Oldsmobile Delta 88 land yacht {it had been my grandmother's, who only drove it four miles a week...}. Talk about MORTIFYING... And then I got to high school and he traded the Oldsmobile for a 1980 Ford truck (sort of like this, but uglier) that was even worse {I still remember the rattle sound it made when he pulled up to the high school in it to pick me up}...  No, I never said thank you for that.

It wasn't until middle school that I realized my parents' penchant for driving really embarrassing cars; all through elementary school it never occurred to me to compare cars or shoes or logos on a shirt with anyone else, but had I known, I would have realized the family principle: we don't have car payments in our family.  

Yes, I HATED their thriftiness many, many times, especially living in this wealthy, sometimes-sort-of-snooty town where a huge percentage of kids get brand new cars for their 16th birthday {some of them BMWs and Corvettes... }. *I got a 1983 Cutlass Supreme {paid for, with cash} when I was 16, and I knew I was darn lucky to get it.

And then I got to college and suddenly I felt like the rich kid. I had a 3-year-old 1988 Cutlass Calais {WITH a huge bag phone, ahem} by then; many of my friends didn't even HAVE a car. And I was able, thanks to my parents' thriftiness, to go to college debt-free, loan-free, job-free... lots of my friends had to work; I did not. I started being a little more grateful that my parents had been so thrifty when I was younger so that they could afford to send me to college, and let me live so comfortably while doing so.

Then I graduated and got my first apartment, and I remember stern lectures from my dad about avoiding ALL debt, saving money, and tithing... I had been taught since childhood to do ALL of those things. I remember my dad telling me that I was about to learn some hard lessons about how every time I turned on a curling iron, it would cost me .25, and every time I left a light on, it would cost me $1, then getting some smug satisfaction out of me sweating in the dark in my apartment, which would be 104* because I was scared to turn on the a/c for fear of high electric bills. See? I had learned... 

ALL that to say... my friends and I are 40 now, and some of them (most, I daresay...) are STILL paying on those 20-year-old student loans. I never had a student loan. 

Most of my generation is deep in debt. 

Most people don't tithe.

Most people think they can't live without a car payment. 

Most people have way more house than they need or can afford.

I don't have it all together by ANY means, but I HAVE tried to make a lifelong habit out of following my parents' money principles: tithe, give, save, and avoid debt at all costs. 

And these are all habits that I want to teach my OWN kids.

One of whom is in middle school, and thinks she NEEDS Ugg boots and a North Face Jacket, and may be just a little mortified to be dropped off at the middle school in my eight-year-old {paid for, immaculate, hand-me-down from her grandmother} vehicle. I don't know; I haven't asked her. Not that it will matter; it will be a great opportunity to build character, and give her something to blog about when she's trying to teach her OWN kids about money.

So since I've never said it before, THANK YOU, mom and dad, for teaching me that I could survive without the latest pricey status symbols, and we won't die if we drive older paid-for vehicles, and to tithe, and to avoid debt. 

You have made my life SO much easier because of it. 

And I want to pass along these good money habits to my OWN kids. I don't WANT them saddled with debt right out of college; I don't want them struggling with more mortgage than they need; I don't want them burdened with ginormous car payments for a stupid vehicle that depreciates by 40% the minute you drive it off the lot. I don't want ANY of that for them. 

And beyond basic financial stability and security, I want them to be grateful and not materialistic, and to be joyful givers.

So where do we start, teaching our kids good money habits? 

I just read this post and this post and was inspired, and promptly ordered this book from Amazon

I'm a huge fan of Mary Hunt and have read many of her books; also, Dave Ramsey is the bomb. And Larry Burkett

All of those people offer sound, Biblically-based money advice. (I have several good 'money' books listed here). 

I'm not sure what it means for my kids, but I've added this to my list of Things I Want to do Better in 2014 and will be digging into Mary Hunt's good financial advice soon.

Wanna join me?

If you liked this post PLEASE share it with your friends! ~ Melissa Beene Taylor *Oh, and several of those links above are affiliate links. You don't have to order through my links, and it doesn't cost you anything, but does benefit me if and when you do. Thanks! :)
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Friday, September 18, 2009

Boot Camp.

We've had just a wee amount of trouble in the Blue House Academy this week with a rebellious attitude.

Someone has been making things very difficult for the rookie teacher.

Its not that she can't do the work; she just thinks that if she throws enough wrenches into the cogs, I'll say, "Oh, forget it.... just go play."

We don't often have moments like these: my oldest child is very sweet and kind and obedient most of the time ~ the whole first-born child stereotype ~ and has this perfect child illusion going on..... I know this because a couple of my friends have said, "She's the perfect child!"


However, though these moments are few and far between, she is in fact human and childish and like all human children she wants to be in charge and needs to be reminded from time to time who the Alpha Dog is around here. Not often, mind you, but it does come in spurts.

We're in a spurt at the moment.

So my best solution for a rebellious, not-wanting-to-obey attitude, is Obedience Boot Camp.

Where momma is the Drill Sergeant and we practice obedience drills all. day. long.

I give them the most tedious orders all day, one after the other with only a quick potty break here and there, and they obey. Period. We keep on until they are so weak and exhausted they can hardly lift a cleaning rag, until their knuckles and kneecaps are bleeding from all the grueling slave labor, or until I break their stubborn, rebellious little wills.... whichever comes first.

OK, put down the phone.....Before you go calling the CPS hot line on me, I was exaggerating, OK?

Not that I ever exaggerate. This was, like, the first time ever.

I make things just unpleasant enough that tomorrow, they'll decide its just more convenient to happily do their schoolwork.

Here they are showing off their meticulous folding and reorganizing job!

Don't let their smiles fool you.....they're suffering, I tell you.

I bet they'll think twice before they sass their poor frazzled teacher again.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Where's Waldo, Watch Me Momma, and Wordless Wednesday (On Thursday).

Tuesday at the pool, *someone* was very upset that her *very mean mother* made her wear floaties.

Yes, *very mean mother* totally forgot that age 3 is the age where one become an independent, self-directed adult who is capable of making intelligent choices in life.

So she ran and hid and taught the *very mean mother* a lesson.

And the *very mean mother* weeped and wailed and gnashed her teeth for the heartache she had caused her child.

Or not.

Big Sister KB has finally decided, at age 7 1/2, to not fear the pool. She learned that jumping in is FUN, and sometimes not fatal.

And she is quite proud of her new-found confidence (and so am I!). I heard "Watch me momma! Watch me momma! Watch me momma!" 172,000 times that morning as she jumped in,

Jumped in again... (note the floaties in the background...*I always win*)

Swam with her face in the water,

And attempted handstands.

I love the pool for the simple fact that children sleep really well after a day at the pool.

They love each other.....I don't care what they say.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Pray for the Hurricane Victims.

HOW is it that two little girls, left semi-unsupervised for a couple of hours while mom and dad are on the other side of those big windows cleaning out the can two little girls do THIS????

A few thoughts come to mind.
* My kids are spoiled.
* My kids have too much stuff.
* My kids lack training.
* My kids should not be left semi-unsupervised while their parents clean out the garage 10 feet away.
* My kids need more 'real' work to do.

And I'm too despondent, crestfallen, lugubrious and disconsolate* to say anything more. Right now, I need to sit down and drink some vodka a cup of hot tea.

* You didn't think that was all me, did you?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


The other day I posted a little story about Big Sis and all the gut-wrenching, heart-tugging drama that went along with a little outfit I made her wear.

Fast forward a couple of weeks, when, as we speak, Baby Sis is upstairs screaming her lungs bloody, because I dared zip her into some fleecy, footy pajamas. SIDE NOTE: A COLD FRONT is coming in tonight, and its supposed to get down to 47 degrees. My house is a drafty old relic built in 1928. When its 47 outside, its 46 degrees inside. Those are the Laws of the Old House that Changeth Not, and if you've ever lived in a drafty old relic of a house, you KNOW its the truth. So, those fleecy, footy pajamas.....its just that time of year when those things are a necessity when you're a TWO YEAR OLD WHO KICKS THE COVERS OFF.

So, Baby A screams. I've envisioned my neighbors on both sides hearing the screams and teaming up to alert Child Protective Services. Probably taking turns dialing up that 1-800 number, because my two-year-old is upstairs screaming, "I WANT IT OFF!!!! I WANT IT OFF!!!!!!!!!."

And I'm just sitting here wondering, is this a girl thing??? Do moms of boys have all this drama over their wardrobe????? I'm a little envious of those moms who can throw on a Lightening McQueen t-shirt from Wal Mart and a pair of denim shorts on their kid, and never hear a peep about it. Is this a 'girl' thing.......a 'sinful nature', rebellion thing........

(...Or is this my fault?)

Don't be too honest now. ;)

Because I'm sort of having a ever-so-brief, fleeting moment.....of insanity.....when I'm sort of wishing I could experience what its like to have a boy.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

DReSSiNG a SiX-YeaR-oLD DiVa, iDLe THReaTS, and THe TooTH FaiRY

I can SO totally relate to THIS POST on the Audrey Caroline blog about trying to find clothing for six year olds!! For those of you who haven't experienced this dilemma, in the clothing manufacturing world, size 4T officially ends the 'toddler' line of clothing, and BIG GIRL sizes start at size 4. So for a couple of years now, I've had quite a challenge trying to find cute and appropriate clothing for a small girl, when all the stores in the mall want to sell you leather hot-pants and sequined tube tops for your pre-schooler. And don't even get me started on the SWIMSUITS with the sexy little triangle tops. It all gets EVEN WORSE at size six.

I've resorted to shopping at Gymboree......which I had long avoided because, well, you know I'm frugal and Gymboree prices sort of hurt my heart sometimes, especially when up til now I've been able to swap hairbows for clothes at a couple of boutiques (read: FREE CLOTHES. Sort of). But, she's outgrowing the whole 'boutique' look, and I've learned the whole 'Gymbucks' system and discovered their 'clearance' button on their website. I just love Gymboree ~ their clothes are CUTE, modest, and yet still 'hip' enough for the discerning 6 year old. For now, until she realizes that Gymboree is for LITTLE KIDS.

So about this morning.

I had bought (aka paid ACTUAL CASH MONEY for) this adorable outfit for KB, from the boutique brand Mis-tee-v-us, and she has *ReFuSeD* to wear it. Until today, when I *MADE* her. You would think I was trying to dress her in high-water plaid pants with rainbow suspenders!!! Oh, the tears....the wailing....the whining. Because I made her wear a little tunic-top with apples and pears.

I mean, come on. Would Hannah Montana wear this, or the Cheetah Girls???? And you know those are our style icons.

No- "thanks, mom, for spending your hard-earned money on this cute outfit for me." No- "thanks, mom, for buying ME an outfit instead of spending money on YOURSELF." And still, no- "thanks, mom, for buying me GOOD clothes instead of stained up garage-sale items or hand-me-downs." Can I have a little gratitude, please??

So today, I resorted to the Idle Mom Threats. You know, the 'don't make me pull this car over' kind of threats. I told her that she BETTER get happy, because if she complained ONE MORE TIME I would make her wear this outfit again TOMORROW. And if she complained tomorrow, she would have to wear it EVERY DAY THIS WEEK. And if she complained again after that, she would have to wear this little tunic top with the apples and pears EVERY DAY FOR THE REST OF THIS SCHOOL YEAR.

Like this outfit? Get used to seeing it. That is, until I can shorten a pair of plaid pants. Anyone know where I can find some rainbow suspenders?

And on an unrelated note, we had a visit from the Tooth Fairy this weekend. When she isn't whining about her outfit, I just *LOVE* seeing her smile.

We did have some drama Saturday, the day her tooth fell out. Lots of gushing blood...... I had no idea so much blood could pour out of somebody's mouth. It was sort of horrifying.

After she calmed down, the first thing she said was, "Can we sthtill go to Jothua'th thoccer game?"

Hee hee.

The joys of having a six-year-old.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Want Happy Children?

No Greater Joy Ministries has blessed our family so much!! We read their child training books, and have since Big Sis was a tiny baby. I was a little hesitant to post this, because if you KNOW my children you know they aren't perfect, BUT I do know that if I ever need help and advice, the answer is usually found in NGJ books/articles/magazine/website. I love them, and if you could use help in this area click here!
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