"Our life is frittered away by detail...simplify, simplify." - Henry David Thoreau

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Thursday, February 4, 2010


We have begun yet another attempt at allowances around our house. In the past we have tried the dollar per grade but that seemed so unfair to Number Three Son who was in Grade One last year. We did okay with doling out the cash but then of course they promptly lost it. So we tried putting it in little jars labelled with their names on the kitchen window sill. That worked until I had pilfered too much change from the jars to pay for pizza lunches and Scholastic orders. They were not as unobservant as I hoped.

So the latest is a scheme, I mean plan, is to give them a much more substantial amount so that they can actually buy at least some of the things they are always begging for as well as save some in their bank accounts. So as of January 1st they each get a dollar per year on this Earth each week. Payable at the end of the month after expenses such as DS games, books and trips to the convenience store have been deducted. And the money left goes straight into their bank accounts. How is that for forced savings? So far one it seems to be working. They are not directly tied to chores but we did discuss when we announced the plan what needs to be done around the house as a matter of course. We're still working on that part.

True to form Number One Son had the full $48 dollars deposited, Number Two had $16 of $36 and Number Three, well he was left with $6 from $28. The idea is that it is a significant enough amount of money that they can buy the bigger things they always want like video games and books but also have money for little treats and there still (in theory) will be some left over. The friend who told us about it says her daughters saved enough for iPods and can pay for their cell phone plans. I'll let you know how it goes this month and if anyone has any other ideas for teaching kids some fiscal responsibility I'm all ears.


  1. Excellent plan but stand firm when they run out of money - it will happen!
    Funny how one of the kids is always the big saver - your eldest, my youngest.

    (I still pilfer from all the change jars around here - that's the beauty of having boys - they don't keep change in their wallets!)

  2. nice. we do $1 a week and they each have 3 things to do to get it. (they are 5 & 7). they save it until they hav enough and then we go out together to celebrate reaching their goal to get the toy or book they want.

  3. Love the direct-to-the bank plan. My sons, however, have pointed out that once it's in the bank I am reluctant to help them draw it out. So true!

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  5. Geez! I had trouble scrounging a Big Mac out of my parents! LOL

  6. What a great idea! We've been struggling with the whole allowance thing for years, but this might actually work. Thank you!


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