Do you recall in certain movies watched how someone will be so tired that they fall asleep in their food at the dinner table?  That would perfectly describe me and my life right about now.

We are finishing up the school year, I am one super proud mama of all the hard work my children have put into their education. It is not enough for me to have them know the right answers but to actually have learned the curriculum.  My 7-year old daughter this past month started making and trying to sell these little paper clips with decor on them, my 6-year-old son asked her why she was so intent on earning money and her quick response was, “I want to go to college.”  Now, the fact that she wanted to go to college did not prick the heart as much as the fact that she was trying to work hard and save now for it.  It was that moment of knowing that all my worries about teaching them finances and how to be honest and work hard are not so much in my hands, but in God shaping their little hearts.  He gave me the manual, I am giving her (and the rest of them) the tools, it is up to them to create something. I am so glad she is realizing this now.

On that note, because I get asked this a lot, in terms of finances, this is how we have decided to deal with money when it comes to our children.  They do not get an allowance.  They can work for money.  My daughter has made blankets to sell.  My son is about to do yard work. My husband and I don’t really have a lot they can do but when they have shown a great decision on something we tell them how proud we are and use the Bible verse that says “the labor is worthy of his/her rewards” (Found in the book of Timothy.)  and we will present them with a dollar or two.  We do not consistently do this because part of being responsible is doing something without expecting pay but we do encourage them in this way.   For example, last week my son surprised me by not just clearing the meal dishes from the table but also rinsing and then washing them and sweeping the kitchen floor without me saying a single word about it.  I gave him a dollar.  My daughter decided the car really needed to be cleaned out and she picked up all the trash in it and put the toys away.  She also earned a $1.

We then say that whatever they earn, they get to keep 1/2 and the other half will go into their piggy bank.  Now we are stepping it up with 10% tithe first, 1/2 piggy bank and 1/2 for them to spend.    The goal is to get into the habit of learning to live on less than you make, learning to save, and having a nice nest egg when you are ready for college, your first home, car, whatever.

It is not always an easy lesson. I mean, how well do we adults follow our own advice?

For more family resources on teaching children finances, I highly recommend Dave Ramesy and Rachel Cruze’s book- Smart Money Smart Kids (you can find my book review on this here.)